300 episodes

Investigating every aspect of the food we eat

The Food Programme BBC

    • Food

Investigating every aspect of the food we eat

    Eating After Cancer: Can rebuilding relationships with food help cancer patients with their recovery?

    Eating After Cancer: Can rebuilding relationships with food help cancer patients with their recovery?

    One of the unexpected side-effects of dealing with cancer can be how it impacts relationships with food and eating.

    The various treatments can take away both appetite, and the ability to eat and enjoy food - which has a knock-on effect on the patient's health, social life and wider wellbeing...

    Sheila Dillon knows this better than most: eight years ago, she was diagnosed with a type of blood cancer called multiple myeloma, and has experienced firsthand what it's like to lose the ability to enjoy a good meal, because of illness.

    This is an issue that hasn’t always been given due attention, by medics or patients – but a shift is underway: there’s growing recognition that people with cancer not only need nutritious food, but also that the pleasure of eating can actually aid their wellbeing and recovery.

    Under self-isolation in the coronavirus outbreak because of her 'immuno-compromised’ status from being on maintenance chemo, Sheila delves into the stories of people recovering from or living with cancer, who have been forced to readdress their relationship with what and how they eat; as well as the researchers and cooks pioneering new, food-based solutions.

    Presented by Sheila Dillon and produced in Bristol by Lucy Taylor.

    • 28 min
    Coronavirus and Food: Your Questions Answered

    Coronavirus and Food: Your Questions Answered

    As the government updates its plans for coronavirus, Dan Saladino answers your food questions.

    • 28 min
    Covid-19: The Food Dimension.

    Covid-19: The Food Dimension.

    Dan Saladino tracks the origins and impact of coronavirus within the global food supply chain. Where are pressures being felt and who's making decisions about feeding Britain? The spead of Covid-19 around the world isn't just proving to be a challenge for public health and economies, it is also proving to be one of the biggest tests faced by the global food system.

    With around fifty per cent of the UK's food supplies coming from overseas and our dependence on a complex and interconnected food system Dan investigates where the pressures are being exerted and how the government and retailers are responding. Concerns are growing for food banks, charities dependent on surplus food and the most vulnerable in society.

    Dan also hears from people who have had to feed themselves during the lockdowns in China and Italy. He also speaks to Professor Andrew Cunningham, an expert in zoonotic diseases, about the origins of coronavirus within the food supply chain.

    Produced and presented by Dan Saladino.

    • 28 min
    Is the Pasty Really Cornish?

    Is the Pasty Really Cornish?

    In the week that Cornish people celebrated their Patron Saint St Piran, Dr Polly Russell & Sheila Dillon ask why the pasty remains an emblem of Cornishness for people around the world.

    There would have been a time when pasties were eaten all over the UK, but the PGI protected Cornish pasty has persevered in Cornwall. Today the Cornish Pasty Association estimate that on it's own, production of Cornish pasties is worth around 20 per cent of the value of the county's food and drink industry.

    In this programme we hear what the pasty means to people in Cornwall, and all over the world; Because when Cornish miners emigrated away from the UK in the 19th century, they took their pasties with them.

    At 2020's World Pasty Championships, we meet pasty makers from as far as the USA, Argentina, Jamaica, and closer, from Kent, Sheffield and Bristol. We hear from Bridget Galsworthy de Estavillo, who has helped to reconnect Mexican paste (pasty) makers with their Cornish heritage in the mountain communities of Hidalgo. And we ask what the Cornish pasty says about a new generation's sense of regional/national identity.

    Presented by Sheila Dillon.
    Produced in Bristol by Clare Salisbury.

    • 28 min
    Lights, Camera, Reaction: Life after Great British Bake Off with David Atherton

    Lights, Camera, Reaction: Life after Great British Bake Off with David Atherton

    What's it like becoming a celebrity overnight? Bake Off Winner David Atherton talks fame, food and post-GBBO freak outs with presenter Leyla Kazim and shares stories and gets some advice from Masterchef winner and Wahaca co-founder Thomasina Miers.

    • 28 min
    A Tale of Two Fish: Salmon, the wild and farmed

    A Tale of Two Fish: Salmon, the wild and farmed

    Dan Saladino investigates the possible extinction of wild Atlantic salmon within 20 years. Dan travels from the River Spey on Scotland's east coast to fish farms in the west in order to plot the decline of one species, the wild salmon, and the rise of another, farmed salmon.

    From a population that was close to ten million, wild Atlantic Salmon numbers are now down to below two million. It's cousins further south, the wild Pacific Salmon hasn't seen declines of anything close to this.

    The author of the ground breaking food books on Salt and Cod, Mark Kurlansky has now turned his attention to the decline of the wild salmon and tells Dan some of the factors that are causing the crisis, from the pollution and dam building in the 19th century, to overfishing on the 20th and the effects of climate change on the oceans in the 21st century. Because the fish goes from being a freshwater fish to becoming an ocean going one, salmon provides, Kurlansky argues, the perfect barometer for how we how humans are treating our our planet, both the land and the oceans.

    Mark Bilsby of the Atlantic Salmon Trust adds his concerns about the impact the salmon farming industry is having on the wild fish population, from the huge numbers of sea lice that can radiate out from farm pens, containing thousands of fish, out the sea, infecting wild salmon. Escaped fish are also a problem he says. Earlier this year, more than seventy thousand farmed salmon escaped from one pen because of storm damage, Bilsby says events such as these are resulting in a weakening of the salmon's gene pool as the domesticated (and genetically different) farmed fish is now breeding with the wild species.

    Rory Campbell and Ian Roberts of Mowi, the world's biggest producer of farmed salmon explain the changes they are making in order to make their industry more sustainable and how schemes such as the Aquaculture Stewardship Council are helping to bring lice levels down and improve welfare standards.

    Produced and presented by Dan Saladino.

    • 28 min

Customer Reviews

A lady who listens and lunches ,

Brain food

The content varies and is always interesting: from chefs to ( unknown to me) countries and cultures, to the problems of feeding Syrian refugees with a strong food culture. I love them all! Great commentary and insightful interviews

Billy6268 ,

glorioius food

thoughtful and insightful

Jozijude ,

Always worth a listen

I really enjoy the variety of topics, the thoughtfulness of content and the articulate, interesting and knowledgeable presenters

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