Winners of the Slow Food Awards revealed

Slow-grown or slow-made, Slow Food is the antithesis of fast food.

The Scottish Slow Food Awards were held at L’Escargot Blanc in Edinburgh on Tuesday, 5 November.

Bryce Cunningham of Mossgiel Farm, winner of the Agriculture category at the Scottish Rural Awards 2019, won Person of the Year at the Slow Food Awards for his sustainable practices.

Mossgiel was the first diary in Scotland to eliminate single use plastic.

‘We’ve managed to create food products in a slow, natural and organic way to bring our passion for food to the cities of Scotland,’ Cunningham said. ‘I believe in low processed foods and foods that are natural, foods we would have eaten 500 years ago. Supermarkets are chasing profits, not health benefits.’

Slow Food is a global food movement that was started in the 1980s by Carlo Petrini.

‘When McDonald’s burgers were about to invade the Spanish Steps in Rome that was just a step too far for an Italian,’ explained Wendy Barrie who was at the awards to collect the Champion Slow Food Product Award on behalf of North Ronaldsay Mutton.

North Ronaldsay Mutton is Slow Food Scotland’s first Presidium product, which recognises the uniqueness of the sheep and the quality of the mutton, as well as the impact it has on the local community.

‘Slow Food is about being good, clean and fair,’ Barrie said. ‘Good meaning good quality food, clean meaning produced environmentally and fair meaning a fair price to the farmer as well as a fair price that you’re paying for it.’

Riverside Bakery in Stirling won Best Bakery. ‘We make sourdough bread and deliver it by bike. We only work by hand, we don’t use any machinery, so in that sense it’s very slow. We use natural fermentation, not industrial yeast. We like to take our time and infuse love and care into the product that we make,’ said Théo Laffargue.

‘We use heritage grains, this is not a nostalgic thing; they’re a type of grain that’s proven to be more nutritious, more digestible. Heritage grains reflect the places they come from, they taste like the landscape,’ said Laffargue.

‘Slow Food is for everyone who eats food,’ said Fred Berkmiller, Chef Proprietor of L’Escargot Blue which won Best Restaurant.

‘I consider slow food to be my grandmother’s thinking,’ he said. ‘People have the right to know where their food is coming from, what it’s been fed with. They want to know what they’re putting inside their body.’

The full list of winners is:

  • Best Butcher: Peelham Farm, Borders
  • Best Baker: Riverside Bakery, Stirling
  • Best Greengrocer: East Coast Organics, Edinburgh
  • Best Fishmonger: Eddie’s, Edinburgh
  • Best Deli or Grocer: Edinburgh Larder, Edinburgh
  • Best Cheesemonger: Iain Mellis, various Scotland
  • Best Market: Edinburgh Farmer’s Market
  • Best Restaurant/Food Eatery: L’Escargot Bleu, Edinburgh
  • Champion Slow Food Product: North Ronaldsay Mutton, North Ronaldsay (available UK wide)
  • Person of the Year: Bryce Cunningham of Mossgeil Farm and Dairy – the UK’s first single-use plastic-free dairy. “Fabulous milk & cream and brilliant environmental credentials.” Bryce was nominated by Director for Slow Food Scotland, Walter Mowat