This was a wonderful event, well done to the organisers and all those who have entered pies. There were hundreds of entries across different categories ranging from speciality pie, football pie, dessert pies and traditional pies.
It was interesting and enjoyable to judge some really excellent pies alongside my judging companion, acclaimed food critic Charles Campion.
I am not a food expert but I am an enthusiast and supporter of our local food heritage and production. We have a very special food culture and heritage in the East Midlands. When asked about the region's identity and what distinguishes the East Midlands I often talk about the area's food industry and heritage.
Across all parts of the region we have great food producers from industrial scale to small, artisan producers. I will always be a supporter of our region's food movement, it is important economically but it's also part of who we are and is an integral part of the identity of communities up and down the region. This includes those foods produced here historically but also the produce we now enjoy in our region from all parts of the world.
The range of produce and its history in our region should be celebrated. Think about the Melton Mowbray pork pie, traditional Red Leicester, Stilton and Lincolnshire Poacher cheeses, Bakewell pudding, the Lincolnshire sausage, meats from Northfield Farm, strawberries grown in North Nottinghamshire or the fresh produce from farms across all our counties, and we should not overlook the excellent breweries across the region as well, including a growing number of microbreweries.
I will always champion and support our local food industry and producers.
We should be proud and celebrate the East Midlands food industry and heritage.
|Judging at the British Pie Awards in |