Minister Poots serves up 100 years of food history

Date published: 15 October 2021

Armagh apples, Comber earlies and Cookstown sausages are just three reasons why Agriculture and Environment Minister Edwin Poots says it’s time to serve up a celebration of our world- class, award-winning food.

DAERA Minister Edwin Poots pictured showing Secretary of State for DEFRA George Eustice around the NI centenary stand at this year’s Balmoral Show.

Launching a series of historical food videos to mark both World Food Day and the Northern Ireland Centenary, the Minister said one of our greatest success stories in our 100 year history is the agri-food sector.

“Much has changed over the last 100 years and changed rapidly, from milking cows by hand and leaving the milk in cans at the end of the lane to robotic milking machines,” explained Minister Poots.

“We have embraced advancements in technology and science, improved our animal welfare standards and learnt how to be use our natural resources.

“All of this has allowed NI to become one of the best suppliers of food anywhere in the world for its scale. We feed around 10 million people when our own population is only 1.8 million.

“But there is so much more to do. There are many opportunities over the next number of years to become self-sufficient in energy produced on our farms which will ensure not only great food produced on our farmers but also green energy.

“Our reputation as a world-class food region will grow so people know we provide safe, healthy and environmentally friendly food for the future,” he added.

Food historian and grower Lady Dunleath has helped us produce the series of food videos which cover 100 Years of NI food.

You can see the first video here on our Northern Ireland centenary hub.

Notes to editors: 

  1. World Food Day is celebrated every year around the world on the 16th October - the date that the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FOA) was founded in 1945.
  2. Food historian Lady Dunleath lives at Ballywalter Park – a 1200 acre estate which is also home to one of Northern Ireland’s largest dairy herds and it also includes significant acreages of arable crops and mixed woodland.
  3. Follow DAERA on Twitter and Facebook 
  4. All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office:
  5. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours’ service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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