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Mayor’s Blog – Food And Water

Mayor’s Blog – Food and Water

Food and Water

On Saturday I had the pleasure of officially declaring open the Bridport Food Fair and the new water fountain in Bucky Doo Square. At both events I was joined by our wonderful Town Crier John Collingwood who as always wowed the onlookers with his powerful voice and witty messages.

Bridport Food Festival 2021

As someone who grew up on a farm and has had an allotment for more years than I can remember I am very aware of the work that goes into the production of the raw materials we consumers expect to appear in our shops and markets as if by magic.

But the production of the raw materials is only the first age of the process. Without the work of dedicated and creative chefs and cooks those beautiful raw materials would not be transformed into the wonderful produce and products that were available at the Bridport Food Festival.

I am very pleased to see that the provenance of the food we eat is something that has become increasingly important to more and more people. Whether it is meat or vegetables, the way in which it is grown and how it is processed matters greatly. The use of artificial fertilisers, chemicals, pesticides and drugs is something that can no longer be tolerated and thank goodness organic farming is increasingly becoming the norm. Intensively produced and highly processed food is now recognised as impacting on our health and wellbeing, and this is as true for products produced from vegetable matter as it is for meat based products.

The stalls were examples of what is best about food production and processing. It was locally grown and locally processed to the highest organic and welfare standards, and represents the best quality food you can buy.

The Bridport Food Festival was a great opportunity to sample some very tasty produce and more importantly purchase as much as you could carry to enjoy later at home.

I was particularly interested in a new local App featuring the best food and drink companies from across the Jurassic Coast region. Click on the following link to find out how you can support local producers, and get discounts and rewards at the finest food & drink retailers, eateries and experiences: https://jurassicfeast.com/

 

Remember Grow local, Process local and Shop local for your own health and wellbeing and for that of the planet.

The first set of images illustrates the range of food stalls at the Bridport Food Market this year.

 

The second set of images illustrates the food related community project stalls at the Bridport Food Festival this year.

Apart from providing the bar, Bridport Round Table members were raising funds for the Bridport Skate Park redevelopment and the Cycling Without Age scheme by attempting to cycle 500 miles on static bikes. You can add your donation by scanning the QR code included in the images above.

The final set of images captures the crowd enjoying the event and the excellent local musicians who kept us entertained throughout the day.

We were even joined by a lovely young couple who had just got married in the Marriage Room at Mountfield.

All of the people I spoke to at the event were full of praise for how well it all went. Everyone including the stallholders I spoke to towards the end preferred the atmosphere of the Mountfield site. The fact that we were able to hold the Food Festival this year is down to a number of hard working people but I would like to single out our Town Surveyor, Daryl Chambers and his team for making it all happen on the day.

Bucky Doo Square Water Fountain

Water is a magical thing. It exists in all three states on our planet, as a gas, as a solid and as a liquid.
I am sure you all know that that around 60% of the human body is water. In fact according to H.H. Mitchell’s Journal of Biological Chemistry the brain and heart are composed of 73% water, and the lungs are about 83% water. The skin contains 64% water, muscles and kidneys are 79%, and even our bones are a watery 31%.

“Water is the driving force of all nature.”
“Nothing is softer or more flexible than water, yet nothing can resist it.”
“Millions have lived without love, but no-one can live without water.”

The Bucky Doo Square water fountain represents a major contribution towards reducing the amount of damage we are doing to our planet.

We are fortunate in this country to have clean and safe drinking water supplied to our homes. We do not have to walk to fill up jerry cans from rivers or if you are fortunate from a standpipe that supplies multiple dwellings. Apart from the labour involved in sourcing water its purity and safety more often than not cannot be guaranteed.

And yet for some reason people in this country buy water in plastic bottles. Water that has been transported across the country and even across the world from as away as Fiji. If you stop and think about the environmental impact caused by the delivery of bottled water to your local shop you realise how crazy it is.

But the environmental impact does not stop there, once the water has been drunk the plastic bottles are more often than not simply discarded.

Here are some frightening statistics that illustrate how big the plastic bottle problem is:

 

A million plastic bottles are purchased across the world every minute of the day, and the worrying fact is that this number will grow by a further 20% by the end of 2021. Worse still, 90% of plastic bottles used aren’t even recycled and end up in landfills across our planet, sitting there and taking around 1,000 years to biodegrade.

Plastic bottles that don’t end up in landfills end up polluting our oceans, killing our environment, injuring, and killing marine animals. It’s believed the Great Pacific Garbage patch, much of which is made up of plastic bottles, covers a surface area of 1.6 million square kilometres which is roughly three times the size of France.

There are more reasons for us to recycle plastic bottles or better still use refillable alternatives, because it takes around 1.5 million barrels of oil every single year to manufacture the bottles. To add to this even more oil is burned transporting the bottles around the globe.

The next time you think you’ll buy a drink that comes in a plastic bottle, think again. Just maybe, if you stop and think you can do your bit to help reduce the 20,000 bottles that are bought every second around the world.
The best way you can help to tackle this huge problem is by carrying a refillable water bottle and using this fountain and hopefully soon others like it in other parts of the town.

If you don’t have a refillable bottle they are readily available from a number of shops in the town and the refillable Bridport bottle and hot drinks mug can be purchased from the Tourist Information Centre. Refil is the way ro go.

If only everyone got into the habit of carrying a refillable water bottle or hot drinks mug the era of single use plastic water bottles and cups would become history overnight.

It was with great pride that I filled my own refillable water bottle and drank a toast to the water fountain.

Long may it flow.

And Finally

There are a few tickets remaining for my charity fundraising event Barking Mad this coming Sunday at Bridport Arts Centre so contact the Tourist Information Centre in order to avoid being disappointed.

The images used throughout this Blog were taken by Tim Russ who has captured both events beautifully. Thank you, Tim.

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