Food for thought: BBC win­ner wants to be­come the coun­try’s first na­tional chef

The Herald - - NEWS -

THE UK’s new­est MasterChef now wants to be­come Scot­land’s first na­tional chef.

Gary Maclean, who won the lat­est MasterChef se­ries on BBC, has said he would like to be con­sid­ered for the new role which aims to make Scots eat bet­ter.

The post, the first of its type in the world, was a key pledge in the SNP Gov­ern­ment’s man­i­festo last May and an ap­point­ment is ex­pected in the near fu­ture.

If ap­pointed Maclean, 45, a se­nior chef lec­turer at the City of Glasgow Col­lege and a fa­ther of five, would act as am­bas­sador, cham­pi­oning good food and en­cour­ag­ing higher con­sump­tion of fresh lo­cal pro­duce.

The role chimes with the SNP’s pledge to in­tro­duce a Good Food Na­tion bill, a new £5 mil­lion fund to pro­mote is­land and re­gional food and drink brands, a re­newed drive to in­crease de­mand for the sup­ply and de­mand of or­ganic food in Scot­land and to en­cour­age lo­cal au­thor­i­ties to pro­cure more Scot­tish pro­duce.

Maclean, who teaches on the col­lege’s ac­claimed HND Pro­fes­sional Cook­ery course, said: “I’d love to be Scot­land’s na­tional chef.

“I’m pas­sion­ate about Scot­tish pro­duce and I don’t think there’s enough ed­u­ca­tion about it gen­er­ally.

“There’s a mas­sive gap be­tween what we grow and what we ac­tu­ally eat.

“We some­how have to bridge that gap. The gen­eral pub­lic don’t get how good our pro­duce is. I think this lack of knowl­edge comes from the par­ents. There’s a lot of work to be done.”

A spokesman for the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment said: “We are cur­rently con­sid­er­ing op­tions to de­liver the com­mit­ment to ap­point a na­tional chef in con­sul­ta­tion with stake­hold­ers.” At home with Gary Maclean and his fam­ily in The Her­ald Mag­a­zine to­day.

GARY MACLEAN: The lec­turer says he would like to be an am­bas­sador cham­pi­oning good food and lo­cal pro­duce.

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