Anybody who visited Crail on the weekend of the 17th-19th of June this year will no doubt know that the Crail Food Festival was a massive success. Organising something of this scale doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, commitment and enthusiasm, all of which Finlay Kerr of the Caiplie Guest House has by the bucket load. I had a chat with him after the festival madness had died down.
What made you come up with the idea to start a food festival?
It was really a combination of things, a love of food, a love of events such as The Big Tent Festival and a desire to bring new and old visitors to our lovely town of Crail.
What challenges did you face in organising the Crail Food Festival?
We had big dreams and high standards so to achieve these from a standing start was hard. Our event at Crail Harbour on Sunday was particularly challenging to manage, but we did it. Sunday was so popular that we actually completely sold out of food. A victory for the Crail Food Festival and all of its wonderful producers!
What message do you think the Crail Food Festival sent out to the local community?
We’ve been successful in creating a strong brand in the name of local produce. We live in a great place that people love to visit, and where community values lie at the heart of what we do. With this sort of support in place, anything is possible.
Why do you think people should shop more locally?
There are so many reasons why people should shop locally. Not only is it better for your health, whilst supporting the local community, it’s also better for the planet. Local shops are so well resourced, but unfortunately if we don’t use them we run the risk of them disappearing.
What do you think made the festival so successful?
Lots of hard work and perseverance brought the festival to life. Our vision of people enjoying themselves at Crail Harbour in the presence of freshly caught lobster and hog roasting was realised. Seeing people fascinated as fish was smoked in front of their eyes, and smoothies were made by peddling on a bike was truly something to behold. We were also lucky to have such a number of skilled people work with us and bring their expertise to the event. And as if by magic the sun was shining!
What makes Fife produce so special?
It has to be the sheer variety of produce available in Fife. There tends to be a bit more of a focus on shellfish, but our fruit, vegetables, meat and baked goods are just as good.