Wednesday 24 Sep 2014
A farmer on the Isle of Man whose one-man campaign saved a breed of sheep from extinction; an old-fashioned smokehouse on Brighton beach; a Somerset apple grower who makes a French inspired brandy; and a family-run farm business in Wales making salamis and chorizos, are just a few of the talented finalists in this year's BBC Radio 4 Food & Farming Awards.
This is the 10th anniversary of Radio 4's Food & Farming Awards which celebrate the people and organisations behind the best of British food.
To mark a decade of the awards, this year's finalists will be joined at the ceremony by two very special guests who will be announced shortly before the event.
The awards – nominated by BBC audiences – set out to find the Best Food Market, Best Local Food Retailer, Best Dinner Lady or Man, Best Food Producer, Best Retail Initiative, Best Take-Away and Farmer of The Year. The event also features the BBC Food Personality of the Year, awarded in previous years to Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Gordon Ramsay, Jamie Oliver, James Martin and Rick Stein.
This year, chef and restaurateur Raymond Blanc chairs the panel of judges which include farmer, cheese maker and Blur bassist Alex James, school dinners champion Jeanette Orrey and chef and food writer Mark Hix.
Chair of judges Raymond Blanc said: "The finalists on this list are food producers, cooks, farmers and retailers who are all, in their own way, truly inspirational people.
"In every category you will find people who are not only passionate about food and farming but are also helping people in Britain to re-connect with their food.
"These awards are important because they offer a rare chance to recognise the hard work and dedication involved in producing incredible food."
The awards will take place on the afternoon of Wednesday 25 November at the Radio Theatre, BBC Broadcasting House, London, and will be hosted by Sheila Dillon, presenter of The Food Programme.
The finalists for this year's awards are as follows:
BEST FOOD MARKET
Eye Country Market, Eye, near Diss, Suffolk
Riverside & Roathside weekly markets, Cardiff
The Goods Shed, Daily Market, Canterbury, Kent
BEST LOCAL FOOD RETAILER
A Ryan Butchers, Much Wenlock, Shropshire
M&M Richardson, Fishmongers, Dungeness, Kent
Donaldsons Shop, Stanhope, Co Durham
BEST DINNER LADY OR MAN
Sarah Allen, The Vine Primary School, Cambourne, Cambs.
John Rankin, Penair Secondary School, Truro, Cornwall
Peter Anderson, Donaldson's School for the Deaf, Edinburgh
BEST FOOD PRODUCER
The Somerset Cider Brandy Company, Martock, Somerset
Trealy Farm Charcuterie, Mitchel Troy, Monmouth
The Exmouth Mussel Company, Exmouth, Devon
BEST RETAIL INITIATIVE
Growfair: Pride of Cornwall
The Co-operative Food
The Rare Tea Company
The Thali Cafe, Bristol
Chang Noi, Chester
Traditional Fish Smokery, Brighton
Patricks' Kitchen, The Goods Shed, Canterbury
FARMER OF THE YEAR
Andrew Dennis, Woodlands Organic Farm, Lincolnshire
George Steriopulos, Isle of Mann
Rosemary Brown and Geoff Brown, Bluebell Woods Dairy, Derby
DEREK COOPER AWARD
The Food Ethics Council
The Food For Life Partnership
Ian Piggott – Open Farm Sunday
The Food & Farming Awards will be broadcast on Friday 27 November at 9.00am with special awards editions of The Food Programme on Sunday 29 November at 12.30pm and Monday 30 November at 4.00pm.
The Food Programme is on Radio 4 every Sunday at 12.30pm and repeated on Mondays at 4.00pm. Farming Today is on Radio 4 every weekday morning at 5.45am and on Saturdays at 6.35am. You can listen again online at bbc.co.uk/radio4.
The finalists in the Farmer of the Year category will be featured on Farming Today in the week of the awards ceremony.
This year's judging panel is chaired by Raymond Blanc – chef, restaurateur and broadcaster – and features: Mark Hix – chef, restaurateur and food writer; Alex James – writer, farmer and broadcaster; Kath Dalmeny – Policy Director, Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming; Jeanette Orrey – former primary school dinner lady, BBC Food & Farming Award winner and now Food for Life Partnership School Meals Policy Advisor; Dr Helen Crawley – public health nutritionist and Director of the Caroline Walker Trust; Rose Prince – journalist, food and cookery writer; Lord Haskins – farmer and former chairman of Northern Foods; Robert Clark, Retail Analyst; Simon Parkes, food journalist, broadcaster and former Michelin inspector; and Sheila Dillon, food journalist and presenter of Radio 4's The Food Programme.
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