Updated: Aug 6
This year’s Royal Highland Showcase, which was live-streamed over a period of seven days, hailed a success as it bridges the gap between the show’s absence last year and the 180th show in 2022
The Royal Highland Showcase has drawn to a close, and with it, a new set of Scottish producers have been crowned champions of their craft.
At the Scottish Bread Championships, the Wild Hearth Bakery led the pack with two of its products; their Seriously Fruit and Sesame and Scotland the Bread Wholemeal, being declared joint supreme champions with the bakery also taking home six gold awards over multiple categories. The Company Bakery was honoured as reserve champion with their baguettes which also earned a gold award in the classic sourdough category.
Meanwhile, St Andrews Farmhouse Cheese Co was crowned the best overall of the Scottish Cheese Championships with their Traditional Farmhouse Cheddar. The runner-up spot was given to the Strathearn Cheese Company’s soft and creamy cheese with a bloomy rind, flavoured with pieces of truffle, which was also declared the best specialty cheese. Other notable winners were the Wee Dalry Dairy who were awarded the Best Small Producer and were also cultured champions with their Crème Fraiche.
For Butter, Graham’s Family Dairy walked home with first and second place with their Butter with Isle of Skye Sea Salt and Graham’s slightly salted Scottish Butter, respectively. Finally, Alanda’s was declared the winner of the Ice Cream Championships with Perfect Scoop rounding things off as reserve champion after receiving a gold award for their vanilla ice cream.
The Royal Highland Showcase, held at the Royal Highland Centre, was designed to help bridge the gap between a dormant year in 2020 and the 180th Show which is set to take place in June 2022. The event, which was live-streamed, also included the judging of over 3000 cattle, goats, sheep and horses, and has been heralded by the organisers as a resounding success.
In partnership with Royal Bank of Scotland, with funding of up to £750,00 from the Scottish Government, this year’s event featured 252 hours of live content and a further 30 hours of on-demand programming. The event was watched by 270,000 people from across 87 countries – including Norway, Finland, Australia, New Zealand, America, Argentina, the Philippines and beyond.
With over two million engagements on social media, the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland (RHASS) are celebrating the outcome of a ‘monumental effort’ which resulted in the hybrid concept being formulated, funded, and delivered in less than 12 weeks.
RHASS Chairman Bill Gray said: “When we reimagined a hybrid Royal Highland Show we couldn’t have believed it would have had such a monumental impact on so many people from right across the globe. Our aim was to connect and entertain our communities and, in the process, shine a light on our food producers, farmers and our way of life. We have achieved this with people from almost 90 countries across the globe tuning in, and with the content online for a further three months, there is even more of an opportunity to reach a wider audience.”
Speaking about how this year’s event will impact the future of the Royal Highland Show, Bill added: “There is no doubt that we will take this hybrid concept forward for future years and in doing so we will achieve greater exposure for our sector, our sponsors and our members. I couldn’t be prouder of our team of Directors, staff, contractors and volunteers who have left no stone unturned to make this Royal Highland Showcase dream a reality.”
Commenting on the success of the event, Rural Affairs Secretary Mairi Gougoen said: “The Royal Highland Showcase marks a step change for the Royal Highland Show and Scottish agriculture. Through the new website and online videos, people, farms and businesses across the world were able to experience Scottish agriculture and food & drink.
“I’m so pleased to have been able to see some of the Royal Highland Showcase in person and see the hard work that went into preparing this event and opening it up to a global audience. I look forward to seeing the long-term benefits from the £750,000 of the Scottish Government funding and seeing how we can continue showing people the best of Scotland’s animals and produce.”
Find out more about next year’s event at royalhighlandshowcase.org.