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Seven Irish Food Producers celebrated at the 2015 Irish Food Writers' Guild Awards

Seven Irish Food Producers were celebrated this afternoon, at the 2015 Irish Food Writers' Guild Awards and Lunch which were hosted at l'Ecrivain in Dublin by top chef and avid Irish food promoter Derry Clarke.

The Irish Food Writers' Guild (IFWG) was formed in 1990 to promote high professional standards of knowledge and practice among writers about food, nutrition, food history and other allied matters and to assist in the forging of links and networks between professionals in the food industry.

The IFWG Food Awards are considered one of the most prestigious of their type in Ireland. They are also unique in that the members of the Guild are the sole nominating and decision-making body and no company or individual can enter themselves for these awards.


Each year they present awards that celebrate homegrown producers, organisations or individuals, whilst also celebrating the heroes who have devoted and are continuing to devote their lives to supporting and promoting Irish food. Now in its 21st year, the annual Irish Food Writers’ Guild (IFWG) Food Awards is a firm favourite on the Irish culinary calendar. 

Food provenance and authenticity were top of the agenda at this year’s Irish Food Writers’ Guild Awards, as seven food producers were awarded and honoured for the high standard and impeccable quality of their products, as well as for their unwavering dedication, devotion and commitment to Irish food. At the event in Dublin today, special mention was also given to producers who embraced sustainable practices and techniques.

Chairperson of the Irish Food Writers Guild, Lizzie Gore-Grimes - Picture courtesy Aoife Carrigy

Lizzie Gore-Grimes, Chairperson of the IFWG said, “The origin of food and drink products is becoming an increasingly important and influential factor for consumers; more and more we are seeing ‘local’ and ‘homemade’ as key factors in their decision-making process. What’s more, as the consumers’ knowledge and interest in food provenance grows, so too does the need for complete transparency on the part of the producer. The stronger the story behind the brand and the more that is known about its origin, the greater the connection between the consumer and the product.

“All of our winners are flying the flag for food provenance this year. They come to the market with products that are real, authentic and bursting with honest-to-goodness quality. The quiet success of these seven winners is in no small part due to the richness of their produce, the strength of their story and the passion of the people behind them." said Lizzie. "What may initially have started as a labour of love for our award winners is now reaping the rewards today. All of our winners are wonderful ambassadors for Irish food, and I am certain that they will remain key players in maintaining Ireland’s enviable reputation on an international stage.”


The 2015 awards were held  at Derry Clarke's much-celebrated l'Ecrivain Restaurant and the Guild presented seven awards at an event which was attended by some of the biggest names in Irish food!

The winners at the 2015 Irish Food Writers' Guild Award are:


On the Pig’s Back  www.onthepigsback.ie
Home Made Pates & Terrines. Farmhouse cheeses, Charcuterie. Stall in the English Market in Cork, and Cafe-Deli in Douglas, Co Cork.
(@PigsBackCork on Twitter)



Skeaghanore West Cork Duck www.skeaghanoreduck.ie
Fresh farm ducks, hand reared and fed a 100% natural cereal-based diet by Helena & Eugene Hickey in Ballydehob, West Cork.
(@SkeaghanoreDuck on Twitter)



Wild About Foods www.wildabout.ie
Artisan chutneys, preserves, syrups, seasoning rubs, cocktail bases and wild pesto made fresh from ingredients sourced locally, foraged in the wild or grown in Malcolm and Fiona Falconer's permaculture gardens in Co. Wexford. (@WildAboutFoods on Twitter)




A special Irish Drink Award was presented to 
Richmount Elderflower Cordial www.richmountcordials.ie
Husband and wife team, David and Martina Burns,make Elderflower Cordial from pure, natural ingredients without any concentrate or artificial sweeteners, flavourings, additives, colourings, or sulphites in Co Longford (@ElderflowerLfd on Twitter)



The Guild’s Environmental Award, where the Guild recognises the integrity of the production methods went to Foods of Athenry www.foodsofathenry.ie
Family Bakers of Gluten Free products and wheat & spelt in their second and separate bakery, all containing no preservatives , additives or hydrogenated fats.
(@FoodsOfAthenry on Twitter)



Birgitta Curtin of the Burren Smokehouse www.burrensmokehouse.ie
was honoured for her notable contribution to Irish food. Originally from Sweden, Birgitta origionally studied marine biology and started up Burren Smokehouse in Lisdoonvarna in 1989. It produces award winning smoked organic Salmon, Trout, Eel and Mackerel.
She is Chairperson of Slow Food Clare, Chairperson of IASC and a member of Good Food Ireland. They opened their Visitor Centre in 1995 to showcase their own products and other local gourmet products and crafts. It has become a popular tourist attraction in the North County Clare area and welcomes over 30,000 visitors from all over the world each year.
Brigitta is at the forefront of promoting Irish Food and is very involved with Failte Ireland's drive to make Food Tourism an major component of the future of modern Irish Tourism.
(@BurrenSalmon on Twitter)





Veronica Molloy of Crossogue Preserves www.crossoguepreserves.com
won the Lifetime Achievement Award for her dedication to growing on the home farm and the consistent innovation of her range of artisan Irish preserves over 20 years.
Veronica was taught how to make preserves by her mother-in-law Nancy and many of the recipes used today are family recipes passed down through the generations.
All her preserves are made using traditional cooking methods using the highest quality ingredients and produced in small batches by hand to maximise control procedures and taste; no artificial colourings, flavourings or preservatives are used. Although this means that production is labour intensive it results in a unique and distinctive flavour.
This continuing dedication aimed at producing a superior product has brought success in the shape of national and international Gold, Silver and Bronze Awards over the last ten years.
Crossogue Preserves remains a family owned operation with an experienced and dedicated team. Veronica's aim has always been to produce quality products with efficiency and to offer excellent customer service.
(@CrossogueP on Twitter)


The Awards are supported by Bord Bia which was commended by the Irish Food Writers' Guild for its tireless support of the Irish food industry both in Ireland and abroad.

Zack

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The Irish Food Guide Blog www.IrishFoodGuide.ie includes news, foodie chat, recipes, award results, links and other general information on the Food & Tourism Industry in Ireland.

It is written & curated by Zack Gallagher, Donegal Town, Co Donegal, Ireland.

“My Blog is a slice of the Irish Food ‘Network’. I’m a Chef with over 27 years experience and also have a background in media. I’m passionate about Irish Food Tourism and I believe that a rising tide really can lift all boats!”

Supporting Irish Food created by passionate producers and encouraging the Irish food & hospitality industry to use modern social media methods to increase their business.

Zack is building an all-Ireland Food Tourism network to assist Tour Operators bringing guests into Ireland to connect easily with artisan Irish food producers, so as they can experience the provenance and personality behind our Irish food Visit www.IrishFoodTours.ie

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