Nato Summit, Newport, Wales

05 Sep

I have just received a bulletin /new release from Clarence House saying: The Prince of Wales hosted a cultural evening showcasing Welsh food, music and people for world leaders on the first day of the NATO UK summit this evening. On the menu at the drinks and canapés event were classic dishes such as Welsh rarebit, cured Welsh salmon and goat’s cheese tartlet, and on hand to wash them down were local beers and wines from France and Chile.

Someone needs to give me strength this week before I scream.

Firstly I’ve not been told by wag food, not that that news will surprise any regular welshfoodbites readers, which Welsh producers had been selected to supply the Nato summit. Ian’s asked questions, but been told this event is being run by Nato. However good of Clarence House to give me some food news.

Now of course I’m delighted guests were served Welsh rarebit, but who’s cheese was used? Welsh salmon, but who supplied the salmon? Goat’s cheese tartlet which goat’s cheese producer was this? Now the reason I want these questions answered is that if the producers are with us on Best Of Welsh & Borders listing, then we can use social media to give them additional promotion, an extra service we offer, but is it worth it when it takes so much effort to get nowhere? Actually shouldn’t it be wag food’s responsibility to be doing just that?

But the crunch of course is wines from France and Chile. Don’t we produce wine in Wales? Silly me, I thought we had some superb wines here in Wales. Haven’t we got Drinks Wales that could easily have sorted this for Nato? Just how can Wales lose an opportunity to promote their own local food. Haven’t we known for years that this Summit was coming to Wales?

On behalf of Welsh food and drink producers, all I can say wag food is I feel you’ve let Wales down.



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  1. honey man

    September 5, 2014 at 1:42 pm

    Cheers for once more sticking up for Welsh producers.
    Why it continues to be your job to keep backing us makes no sense.
    But then you get pilloried for it.
    Plus Abergavenny now too. It’s your fault they were cheating wag and the tax payer? Not sure how that works.
    Cowards and bullies

  2. Jo

    September 5, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    Kath and ian
    I don’t know how you keep going I really don’t. If I were in your position my head would explode.

    No mention from anyone that this was happening as we would have gladly supplied NATO with proper ice cream!
    And I cannot imagine what the Abergavenny Food Festival thinks it’s getting up to except pulling the wool over Welsh producer’s eyes.
    I just wanted to say that I really applaud and appreciate your continued support of Welsh food producers – where would we be without you fighting our corner. Please keep up the good work xxx

  3. Parrot

    September 5, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    Well Jo the simple answer is our Best Of Welsh & Border producers deserve a better deal than they are getting. Plus we promise them that if they have issues they can’t/wont/daren’t take to wag then we will do so on their behalf. Sadly I thought that would be quite a simple procedure, how wrong I was! Stupidly I didn’t realise that a government department didn’t wish to hear any constructive criticism. It really doesn’t have an impact on my business if a food festival or a market isn’t working – but it does matter to our producers. I thought I was dealing with grown-ups that could understand that but ten years later we are seriously no further forward.
    It’s not a case of my head exploding more a case of a severe, on going headache after knocking my head constantly against the wag food wall. Communicate, work together was vital to us when we were doing PR & Marketing but something dreadfully lacking in wag food.
    Don’t understand wag food and Nato, what a lost opportunity.
    As for Abergavenny well think we are back as I’ve said before like overseeing a playgroup, except for our producers it’s their livelihood.
    After a hard week your kind words are a real boost to the team here.
    Someone has to fight for producers, until they have the confidence to fight for themselves, but with this department there’s no chance of that. I just wish there was an unbiased referee in the boxing ring with us. ‘Unbiased’ I’m being funny again, but thanks for your support.

  4. trader

    September 8, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    Wasted chance to make much of Welsh food producers
    can’t understand it

  5. producer

    September 9, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    How can it be that wag lose another chance to push Welsh produce down the Nato throats and give us all in this industry a big boost.
    We produce Welsh wine so why wasn’t that served?
    You feel like kicking this department into touch
    back Welsh producers for goodness sake it is not that difficult and it is your role.

  6. John Savage-Onstwedder

    October 1, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    Dear K,

    You are absolutely right and deserve praise for bringing this to our attention. After all the money that has been spent over the years on Wales The True Taste and the various food festivals, it is inexplicable that those responsible for promoting Welsh produce (both food and drink) get it so
    badly wrong. Whenever there is Welsh produce on the menu it should be explicilty named. For instance if Caws Cenarth or Caws Teifi Cheese is part of the menu it should name the cheese.
    The same applies to all other products. We must keep on trying to get through to them.
    However, they are not the only culprits. Too many of our top hotels and restaurants still do not stock top quality Welsh produce. At the various food festivals, they pay it lip service, but often its just ‘talk’ and they do not as yet ‘walk-the-walk’!