A few weeks ago, after plucking up the confidence and realising what I wanted to do in life, I left my job. In terms of handing in my notice it was an easy decision to make, but in terms of leaving the friends I had made, it was a very tough one. Up until last Monday I honestly thought I had made a disastrous decision and that I should have stayed and planned my next step more thoroughly.
It was walking around Earls Court One that all these fears were alleviated. Here I got to meet fellow minded foodies who had travelled from all over the country to sell their bottled, preserved, smoked, tinned, home grown ambitions and dreams. It was great just to stop and talk to those who, like me, had grown tired of their non-descript jobs and decided to move into food. Of those I really enjoyed meeting it was the lovely people of British Fine Foods and Scratch Meals that stuck out most prominently. Both are definitely worth a peak on your next tea break from that awful spreadsheet you are working on.
Obviously the cogs were turning and I spent much of the afternoon trying to figure out what it is I wanted to do. Do I want to be chef? Do I want to work in food PR or Marketing? Do I want to make my own product of some sort? Do I want to make clothes out of cheese? Can you bottle hugs? A lot of questions and answers that needed to be whittled down into one, obviously I am still looking.
The best thing I thought was to make as many contacts and ask for as much work experience as possible. Which is why I found myself at the Real Food Festival in the first place, not only was I kicking calories in the face I was also volunteering for the Find Food Guild as a judging coordinator at their Great Taste Awards. My role was basically to taste food and record the comments made by three other judges on to a computer and scoring database. As a team we decided on a score and if an entrant was to be awarded a 1, 2 or 3 star grade. Needless to say I had immense fun tasting a variety of chocolates, chutneys, cordials, crisps, ginger beers, truffles and more. As a plus, I am going to get to do it all again tomorrow, Thursday and Friday. Yay!
Below are only a few of the things I got see, smell, taste and be inspired by;