Princess finds some food for thought in Midlothian

The Princess Royal enjoys a tour of the laboratories at the M oredun Research Institute
The Princess Royal enjoys a tour of the laboratories at the M oredun Research Institute

The Princess Royal backed the collaboration between research organisations and businesses at an event to mark Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink.

The event held at Pentlands Science Park, the headquarters of the Moredun Foundation and Moredun Research Institute, highlighted the ties across different sectors of the food industry and the importance of bringing together researchers with industry representatives to help grow Scotland’s reputation as a Good Food Nation.

Seventy-five per cent of the land in Scotland is used for agriculture and Scotland is renowned worldwide for the quality and diversity of its natural larder.

The country boasts several Michelin starred restaurants but many people in Scotland suffer from poor diet and 
nutrition.

The Princess Royal was joined by more than 100 representatives from the food, agricultural government and research to showcase the work being carried out to ensure the delivery of high-quality nutritious and sustainable food supplies and to encourage local food production and consumption.

The speakers at the event included professor Julie Fitzpatrick from the Moredun Research Institute, professor Peter Morgan of the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, and Mrs Shirley Spear, chairman of the new Scottish Food Commission and owner of the Michelin starred Three Chimneys restaurant on the Isle of Skye.

The presentations highlighted how new research and technologies were being applied to help in primary food production on farms, improving the nutritional quality of food and diet.

Moredun Foundation chairman Ian Duncan Millar said: “Moredun is delighted to host this event celebrating Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink, highlighting the importance of collaboration and connectivity between new research and those working across the food industry to help ensure the production of high quality, nutritious and healthy food.”

During her visit,the princess met guests including a group of post-graduate students and early career scientists along with those representing some of the research organisations involved, the farming industry, the Scottish Food Commission and the Equine Grass Sickness charity.