Food champions plan on menu to promote produce

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TOURISM businesses in the Lothians are to be signed up as Scottish Food Champions.

The initiative, unveiled by Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead, will recognise businesses which offer quality, fresh seasonal produce as well as promoting where their food comes from. The Scottish Government and VisitScotland venture will cover hotels, B&Bs, food outlets and visitor attractions and will assess 2500 businesses over the next three years, with the aim of getting at least 1000 signed up by 2015.

In a speech at last night’s Scotland Food and Drink Excellence Awards, Mr Lochhead said the accreditation scheme would celebrate achievements, drive up standards and increase awareness of the provenance of food.

He said: “Scotland is home to some of the world’s finest food and it’s vital that we showcase the best of what we have to offer.”