Carol Trewin was by all accounts a food writer who made a difference. She made a difference to the farmers, producers, chefs, rural businesses and communities she wrote about, because she wasn’t afraid to give an honest account.
As Food Editor of West Country regional paper the Western Morning News, she was in a position to influence, criticise and champion. I find the trajectory of her career inspiring – this was a woman who produced BBC radio programmes Woman’s Hour, the Food Programme and On Your Farm. She had her own milk round in Yorkshire for a decade, she headed up BBC Radio 4’s Rural Affairs Department and helped run the Farming Today team that covered BSE.
Carol died of leukemia in October 2009, the same year I qualified on my City journalism course. I wish we could have met. She ended her career in the West Country, where she’d covered the dark days of foot and mouth as Farming Editor for the Western Morning News. She’d also told many a positive story about the fantastic food coming out of the region.
Last Saturday, thanks to The Carol Trewin Young Food Writers Award, I had my own opportunity to write something in the Western Morning News that I hope Carol would have been interested to read. I wrote about the sustainable role that one of our native breeds, the Red Ruby, can play in modern food production. It was inspired by my own native Red Ruby cow, Flirt, and the work of farmers, butchers and chefs who all care about what Carol called ‘good, clean, fair food’. It’s been a real highlight of my year.
All images of me in this post are copyright photographer Emily Whitfield-Wicks.