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26/04/2016

CalMac's Small Isles ferry becomes the latest in the fleet to achieve Taste Our Best status

A ferry serving Scotland's Small Isles has become the 11th in Caledonian MacBrayne's fleet to achieve the national Taste Our Best status.

taste our best award for mv lochnevisAll 10 of CalMac's major vessels gained the accreditation last year and the smaller MV Lochnevis, which plies the route to the Isles of Rum, Eigg, Muck and Canna, is the latest to gain the thumbs up for her culinary prowess.

The accreditation programme is run by VisitScotland and allows customers to easily identify and trust establishments which meet the criteria of serving a minimum of 40 per cent Scottish provenance ingredients within their menus.

Of CalMac's 62 Scottish on board suppliers, more than 40 of them are from across the ferry company's west coast network. Together it is a spend of £5.2million per annum. All 11 of CalMac's vessels which hold the award are serving more than 50 per cent Scottish produce on their menus.

Passengers on board can tuck in to the likes of Barra-landed haddock or cod, Argyll Smokery salmon salad, Stornoway black pudding, Ardgay venison burger or Lockerbie macaroni cheese.

The award sees the Mariners cafes join such illustrious company as Gleneagles in Perthshire, Martin Wishart at both Edinburgh and Loch Lomond, and The Ubiquitous Chip in Glasgow, which are also Taste Our Best accredited.

When CalMac's 10 major vessels picked up the award last year, it became the first ferry company to take Visit Scotland's 'Taste Our Best' seal of approval to the high seas.

By using or stocking these ingredients and products, Caledonian MacBrayne has made a commitment to both these premier food businesses and to introducing Scotland's fresh larder to customers.

"It is really important for us to serve and promote good home-grown food, drink, products, talent and opportunities on board our ships when we can," said CalMac's Retail Development Manager Gordon Smith. "We have worked hard to put together a menu which not only satisfies our hungry customers, but which is value for money."

Visit Scotland's Taste Our Best accreditation ensures that the customer will eat quality ingredients of Scottish provenance and the freshest seasonal produce.

It guarantees that at least 40% of the Scottish produce will be highlighted on the menu and staff will be well informed about the origins of each meal on your plate.

Taste Our Best, which replaced the EatScotland scheme, also helps to raise the profile of Scottish food as an important part of tourism, giving credit to those who are achieving high standards and encouraging others to aspire to them.

For more information, visit www.visitscotland.com/tasteourbest

Picture shows steward Joan MacLeod and cook Paul McCurdy on board MV Lochnevis proudly displaying their certificate

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