Nick Nairn serves up new-look Landward
Acclaimed chef and ambassador of Scottish food Nick Nairn will be the new face of BBC Scotland's rural affairs magazine Landward when it returns to BBC Two Scotland on Friday 1 June in a new day and timeslot.
Moving to Friday evenings at 7pm, the new series of Landward welcomes the celebrated Stirlingshire-born chef who will present alongside Landward stalwarts Ken Rundle, Euan MacIlwraith as well as new addition Sarah Mack.
Famed for his staunch support of top quality Scottish produce and a passionate advocate for healthy eating, each week Nick will climb the farm gate to showcase the best of the Scottish countryside.
The Landward team will also meet farmers, crofters and rural businesses, exploring the environmental, political and technical issues which impact on Scotland's countryside.
Nick is looking forward to becoming part of the Landward line-up: "I'm very excited to be joining the team on such a popular and long-running BBC series. As a country boy through and through, rural issues have always been close to my heart. These issues have never been more relevant, so it's great to be involved in bringing them to a wider audience.
"This will be my first show where I'm not cooking for the cameras, and I'll admit to finding that a bit daunting. But I'm up for the challenge, and although we'll still be looking at the odd-foodie issue – how could we not with all the fabulous produce that Scotland has to offer? – I'm looking forward to getting my teeth into all sorts of other meaty stories and, of course, enjoying the stunningly beautiful scenery along the way."
Simon Cousins, Landward producer, says: "I'm delighted Nick is the new face of Landward, his energy and enthusiasm is infectious. Nick's a passionate advocate of all that is best about Scotland, but where he sees room for improvement, or the need for change, he'll shout it from the rootftops.
"Landward aims to harness Nick's energy and expertise to examine a whole range of issues affecting those who live, work and play in the Scottish countryside.
"This is Nick as he's never been seen before, he'll be in the great outdoors investigating food issues and in the thick of rural affairs."
From food dumping to wind turbines, supermarket food influences to Scottish beef exports, the red deer population to global warming, Landward will continue to be at the cutting edge of rural affairs, exploring the major issues which affect rural Scotland.
A detailed weather forecast will continue to be a key component of the new look Landward.
Strengthening its commitment to rural affairs coverage, the new series of Landward is part of BBC Scotland's bigger outdoors picture which also includes the launch of a new portal designed specifically for people who live, work and enjoy the Scottish countryside.
The portal will be a place where the audience can get involved in discussing and debating rural issues as well as accessing weather reports, maps and events information. Detailed local forecasts will also be available online.
In addition, the new portal will connect all of BBC Scotland's rural affairs output including TV programmes Landward and The Adventure Show alongside BBC Radio Scotland's GrassRoots and Out Of Doors, amongst many others. More details on the portal to follow in due course.
NFU Scotland President Jim McLaren said: "We are delighted that Scotland's rural communities and economy are being brought to the fore in Landward. The new day and time slot will bring the programme to a much wider audience which will be welcomed by the many Scots who are increasingly interested in rural issues.
"We fervently believe that Scotland produces among the best food in the world and we are delighted that Nick Nairn, such a well-respected and popular Scottish gastronomic figurehead, is leading the charge for Scotland's food industry, from the farm to the plate.
"It is crucial that a programme such as Landward exists to explore the big issues relating to rural life and businesses, the environment and the political landscape, and I am looking forward to our continued involvement in this programme with great enthusiasm."
Essential viewing for rural dwellers, foodies and anyone who enjoys the Scottish countryside, Landward will, as ever, lead on strong editorial stories, characters and awe-inspiring Scottish landscapes.
Nick, who was brought up in Port of Menteith near Stirling, has had a long and pioneering career in the UK food industry.
In 1991, he became the youngest chef in Scotland to win a Michelin star and he has become a familiar face to many on TV shows including Ready Steady Cook, Wild Harvest, Island Harvest and the Great British Menu.
Outside his business interests, Nick is a keen mountain-biker, hill-walker and windsurfer.
Landward, Friday 1 June 2007, 7pm, BBC Two Scotland