Event: IFWG Cookbook Sale

With more than 60 members ranging from cookery authors to broadcasters and journalists, food stylists and recipe developers to magazine editors, the Irish Food Writers’ Guild are a diverse bunch. But if there’s one things that we have in common, it’s got to be a pretty mean collection of cookbooks built up over the years.


We’ve decided to do a collective declutter and a bit of fund-raising for the IFWG while we’re at it. Of course there are books within those personal collections that we’ll never tire of or part with. But for many of us, we’re in possession of some fantastic cookbooks that we know deserve a better home: because we ended up with duplicate copies, or because we’re moving house, or just to make space for new publications.


There’s authoritative tomes like The Roux Brother’s French Country Cooking, Leiths How to Cook or Raymond Blanc’s Recipes from Le Manoir Aux Quat' Saisons alongside cookbooks on everything from tapas or cupcakes to potatoes or salads. There’s well-loved publications from local favourites like Neven Maguire and Catherine Fulvio alongside tasters of Dean & Deluca's New York, Bill Granger’s Sydney, Keith Floyd’s India, Nouha Taouk’s Lebanese kitchen or Claudia Roden’s Middle Eastern Cooking. There’s cookbooks for hungry students and cookbooks for the perfect Christmas dinner, and of course several from Guild members too: Rachel Allen, Aoife Carrigy, Brenda Costigan, Domini Kemp and Donal Skehan to name a few.


We’re selling hundreds of these at just €5 each, on Sunday 30th October, 11am–5pm at the Dublin Flea Market in Newmarket Square (look for us inside in the Dublin Food Co-op building). Some of these are well-thumbed classics but many are good as new. Either way, there’s some serious treasures to be unearthed so get there early for the pick of the crop and get your Christmas shopping started – and a few treats for yourself too of course.






20 Oct, 2016

urgent concerns on food sovereignty

The Irish Senate has passed a motion calling on the Irish government to reject the provisional application of the CETA (Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement ) with Canada at the Council of Ministers meeting on October 18 2016.


The Irish Food Writers’ Guild welcomes the Senate’s vote and congratulates independent Senator Alice Mary Higgins on the success of the motion. The Guild supports the view that the CETA treaty will have detrimental effect on our food sovereignty; our agricultural sector; and on the future nutritional health of the nation.


The Irish Food Writers’ Guild are particularly concerned about the following issues:


  • The new negative listing system of the treaty means everything is in the treaty unless otherwise stated. Many of our European neighbours have inserted hundreds of foods and other activities as being excluded from CETA, Ireland has only listed six economic activates to be protected. Except aquaculture, no other Irish food or agricultural activity will be protected.


  • New international courts called the Investment Court System (ICS) will hinder our Government from creating positive legislation to support local food and agriculture sector as arbitrators view these as a barrier to market for trans-national food businesses.


The Guild supports the view that the Government should not authorise provisional application of the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA). Ireland’s food sovereignty should be protected by upholding Article 29.5.2 of the Irish Constitution which states: ‘The State shall not be bound by any international agreement involving a charge upon public funds unless the terms of the agreement shall have been approved by Dáil Éireann’.

13 Oct, 2016

Awards: National awards for community food projects announced

10 Oct, 2016

An organisation that embodies and protects the richness of Ireland’s agricultural legacy has today been announced as the winner of the 2016 Irish Food Writers’ Guild Community Food Awards.



The Irish Seed Savers Association, which this year celebrates its 25th anniversary, conserves and distributes rare and heritage seed varieties and encourages the skills of saving your own seeds. The Association plays an active and crucial role in helping keep Irish agricultural biodiversity alive and well at a time when sustainability is on both political and social agendas, not only in Ireland but at a global level.


The Irish Food Writers’ Guild (IFWG) Community Food Awards recognise and celebrate the contributions made by organisations, enterprises and individuals to furthering social responsibility and reward stellar community efforts in the food arena.  This is the second year of these annual awards and the IFWG is committed to recognising people who make a real difference to food and food practices in Ireland, primarily at a community level. This year’s awards were made possible with the support of Slow Food Ireland.


Entries to the awards can include food education, environmental or sustainability projects, food charity programmes, community initiatives or social entrepreneurialism. The awards are open to national, local and community programmes that contribute to the promotion of sustainable food and food practices in Ireland.


According to the judges, without the work of the Irish Seed Savers Association we would have already lost much of our food heritage. Its Education Project on Agricultural Biodiversity will have lifelong benefits for the young citizens with whom it engages and its long-term impact on Ireland’s policies as a food-producing nation could be immense.


Four other enterprises were recognised at the awards:

  • Highly Commended: The Organic Centre in Leitrim, which has been a pioneer in providing training and education, information and demonstrations of organic gardening, growing and sustainable living since 1995.
  • Commended: Loaf Catering, a catering company in Belfast that works with people with learning difficulties or autism and whose profits go to helping support those with difficulties join the workforce.
  • Commended: OURganic Gardens, which, from its Donegal base, helps new and existing gardeners embrace organic methods to cultivate their gardening practices.
  • Commended: Cork Food Policy Council’s Edible Greening Initiative, which was initiated to teach people how to grow food in up-cycled containers and to highlight the health, environmental and aesthetic benefits of growing food.



Aoife Carrigy, chairperson of the IFWG said, “These awards are very special as they recognise the broader significance of food within our communities and society: as a source of nourishment and enjoyment, and as a connector between people, but also as a birthright of citizens in terms of the need for equal access to good food produced in a sustainable manner.


“We have a shared responsibility to protect the future of our food. These Community Food Awards celebrateprojects we believe have made positive impacts, with an emphasis on inclusivity and a commitment to people and passion before profit. The awards aim to highlight some of the excellent work being done on both large and small scales within our communities, and to say thank you to those who carry out this often thankless work.


“This year’s winner is a national treasure that we feel must be nurtured and supported. At a time when international pressure is building around trade agreements such as CETA and TTIP, the passing of which could have serious detrimental effects on many aspects of our lives including our food production system, the existence of organisations such as the Irish Seed Savers is more important than ever.”


The winners were presented with their 2016 IFWG Community Food Award at an event hosted at The Cliff Townhouse in Dublin and supported by Slow Food Ireland and Poacher’s Tonic, with thanks to Blackwater Gin and Gunpowder Gin.





For more information on each of the five organisations recognised at this year's Community Food Awards, click here.


Pictured is winner Tansy Watson of Irish Seed Savers with Gaby and Hans Wieland of The Organic Centre in Leitrim (Highly Commended).

Pictured (clockwise from top of stairs): Joanne Butler, OURganic Gardens, Donegal; Gaby + Hans Wieland of the Organic Centre in Leitrim; Alice Doyle of Cork, Cork Food Policy Council; Tansy Watson, Irish Seed Savers Association, Clare; and Maeve Monaghan, Loaf Catering, Belfast.

Pictured is Irish Food Writers' Guild chairperson Aoife Carrigy and Tansy Watson of Irish Seed Savers.

Pictured (from left to right): Blackwater Gin & Gunpowder Irish Gin, both served with Poacher's Tonic.


Photos: A round-up from the Community Food Awards 2016

10 Oct, 2016

Photos: Paul Sherwood Photography


Quick links

Links of Interest

Not the full Irish - Katy McGuinness explores the true origins of 'Irish' foods.

The Irish Food Writers’ Guild is grateful to the Herbert Park Hotel for their ongoing generosity in hosting our regular meetings in their excellent facilities.


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