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Community / Food and drink festival set to return to Clickimin in October

The event will also be broadcast online

Last year's event was held online.

TASTE of Shetland’s annual food and drink festival will be staged both in person and online this autumn – if Covid-19 restrictions allow.

The Clickimin Centre is booked for Saturday 23 October for the event.

Organisers Shetland Food and Drink Limited, the promotional umbrella body representing over 90 members, are co-ordinating stallholder and broadcast contributions from local businesses and organisations for the one-day festival.

Festival goers can buy their favourite local delicacies direct from producers then sit down to enjoy live cooking demonstrations and culinary discussion with tasty treats in hand.

Online festival viewers can see the same live entertainment in the comfort of their own homes and buy Shetland food and drink online from the Taste of Shetland shop or from suppliers’ own websites.

It comes after the 2020 festival was held via a broadcast online due to coronavirus restrictions.

Shetland Food and Drink manager Claire White said the 2021 festival format has been decided by member businesses and combines the best of previous festival experiences.

“Our members love interacting directly with customers on festival market stalls, but they also enjoyed the extra profile generated by last year’s inaugural online festival,” she said.

“We’re now combining these two elements in an event which promotes Shetland’s exceptional produce both locally and worldwide.

“The Taste of Shetland Online Festival 2020 was seen by around 45,000 people in at least 53 countries. We’re thrilled to be satisfying that virtual global appetite for Shetland food and drink again, as well as showcasing the best of our sector to local audiences during the tattie holidays. Covid permitting, trading will take place between 10am and 5pm, with the live broadcast airing online from 11am to 3pm.”

Shetland Food and Drink said it was grateful to festival sponsor Scottish Sea Farms for support with staging the event.

The company’s regional manager for the Northern Isles Richard Darbyshire said the festival is a “fantastic way of promoting the range and quality of local produce available from the islands”.

Further details will be shared on Taste of Shetland digital platforms over the coming weeks, with White explaining that behind-the-scenes planning is now underway.

“We’re currently gathering stallholder interest and broadcast ideas from members,” she said. “Those keen on having a stall in Clickimin should book their slot by 13 August and broadcast content needs to be with us by 17 September.

“All expressions of festival interest can be emailed to info@tasteofshetland.com.”