Belfast Telegraph

Foodies urged to get creative and write an Ode to Food for Northern Ireland Year of Food and Drink

Food lovers are being encouraged to write about local products to celebrate the Northern Ireland year of Food and Drink in 2016.

The #odetofood competition has been inspired by the great produce that Northern Ireland has to offer as well as one of the world’s best-known poets from Northern Ireland, Seamus Heaney, who wrote about food in poems like Digging and Blackberry Picking.

Rachel Quigg, Communications and Destination PR Officer for Tourism Northern Ireland, said: “We want people to have a bit of rhyming fun. We have so many tremendous local brands in Northern Ireland like Bushmills, Tayto, Abernethey Butter, Armagh Cider, I could go on, that people can use as inspiration for their poems.

“Not only that, some of the world’s best-known writers are from Northern Ireland, like CS Lewis and John Hewitt, so what better way of celebrating our food and literary history than combining the two in a poetry competition.”

Tourism Northern Ireland has supplied a number of different ways for you to upload your creative and fun poems – via social media using hashtag #OdetoFood, email to or post on Facebook tagging @discovernorthernireland by Monday 29 February.

The best poem will win one night’s bed and breakfast in stunning, Laurel Villa boutique guest house in Magherafelt for two people and entry for two on the Seamus Heaney Tour.

Rachel continued: “You might write a poem in four lines or a couple of paragraphs – as long as it’s inspired by our local food and drinks it’s a contender. We would like to encourage entries from children, as well as adults, and remember everyone to please keep them clean.”

To get things started, Tourism Northern Ireland have got into the spirit of things by coming up with their very own food-themed rhyme –

There was a young man from Newtownabreda,

Who was partial to a piece of toasted Veda,

He loved honey and cheese,

And a big feed of peas,

Potato bread, sausages and soda!

For more information on Year of Food & Drink 2016 visit

Belfast Telegraph Digital


From Belfast Telegraph