Terra Madre Waterford

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  • Michael Quinn

Ok, so it was a bad weekend for Waterford GAA fans.
But, here is the good news: Waterford's hosting of Terra Madre was triumphant. Crowds were massive: 750 folks were fed on Friday night by Michael Quinn and his crew, and 200 more had to be turned away. Those sorts of numbers are unprecedented in Irish SF gatherings, so hats off to Donal Lehane and his crew who brought matters to a close with a massive farmers market on Sunday. Waterford Bridgestone parishoner Eamon Barrett said of the market: “The Market yesterday was just out of this world - I had to blink to believe I was in Waterford, so many stalls, so many customers, such a wonderful, truly Slow Food vibe. We went in at 9am to transfer stock to the Febvre van from my van and didn't come home until 5pm. Enjoyed every minute of it”.
We played a modest part in the forum on hotel food, and our crew came up with two suggestions for the Minister:

Accommodation ratings awarded by Failte Ireland should include a FORK symbol awarded to registered operators who demonstrate the proven support of local foodstuffs, growers and farmers.

Government funding in part should be channelled via organisations such as CAIS, Eurotoques and other primary producers to facilitate and remunerate their members to educate culinary students and other food related groups and organisations.

The second proposal came about because we have an extraordinary reservoir of talent in our artisans, but we have got to get it into places like WIT, and get those artisans paid at consultant's rates for their work, as they inspire students to be as brave and creative as they have been.

Finally, two vignettes: two food ministers, Michelle Gildernew and Trevor Sargent, on the same stage on the same afternoon pledging their promise that GM seeds will never be released in Ireland

Secondly, the extraordinary Carlo Petrini, in his opening speech, exulting in the fact that Michelle Gildernew had arrived and presented Darina Allen with a bouquet of flowers. “The is the first time I have ever seen this: the politician giving flowers to the cook!”