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On The Menu

In May, our regional food group co-ordinator – Sheena Horner – hosted a learning journey within Dumfries & Galloway for those involved in food, drink and tourism from Arran. 

A tourism learning journey is a fantastic opportunity for others to step outside of their businesses to visit and experience how peers operate in another location. There are numerous benefits of hosting and participating in learning journeys, including: shared knowledge, new collaborations, networking, opportunities to discuss challenges, plus much more (Scotland Food and Drink, 2022). 

With food tourism experiences, fantastic hospitality, beautiful scenery and a great range of outdoor activities to try, Dumfries and Galloway is a perfect place to host a learning experience. 

Throughout the journey, participants were asked to reflect on their adventures then produce a blog on their return home. Michelle Te Ohaere, Sales & Marketing manager at Arran Dairies & Taste of Arran won the blog contest with this beautiful menu description of her experience of Dumfries & Galloway – 

On the Menu

Dumfries & Galloway


What started as a food learning journey became so much more than just a sampling of the bounties of the region, but one where we sampled the lives behind the real people whose livelihoods are driven by their own innovation and desire to nurture sustainability in all that they do.

Yes, we tasted our way around Lockerbie venison, indulged in juicy morsals of Garlieston brown

crab. We witnessed 25,000 tiny jars of Galloway preserves being flung about by what looked like a team of mad scientists and then enjoyed the taste of their hard work; their chutney the perfect partner in crime to a Carsluith smoked chicken breast and Arran cheddar.


But what I’m taking away with me from this experience isn’t just a few pounds on my hips; it’s the connection to people and their stories. Farmers so dedicated to their cows, that due to water

pressure issues, they won’t run a bath until all the cows have been watered.

Behind mouthfuls of deliciousness, stories of fathers who escaped shady pasts, where tips from a Saudi Arabian prince enabled one father to buy a house setting them off on a journey to become one of the most successful producers in Scotland (and whose Mother was and is the backbone of their success through “a decade of hardwork”).

How depression cultivated the most beautiful smoked lamb I’ve ever tasted. Everyday people disrupting the industry with their knowledge and passion.


Luck is what happens between hard work and opportunity.

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