FARMERS and food producers across Staffordshire will take part in a film project to promote regional produce ahead of the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Short video profiles will be created by Staffordshire University film students to demonstrate the quality of locally sourced food and where it is from.
It is hoped the Farmer’s on Film project will help boost the region’s profile during the Olympic Games, when the world’s attention will be focussed on the UK.
The films will be made available online. It is planned to link them with a smart phone project that will allow consumers to easily find out where their product’s ingredients have come from.
Sarah Gayton, a baker from Staffordshire Moorlands and Staffordshire Olympic Coordinator for the Women in Food & Farming Union, is the mastermind and coordinator behind the Farmers on Film project.
She said: “The whole idea is to promote Staffordshire and get food from the area eaten and publicised at London 2012. The films can also be used to influence the British Olympic Committee to promote the British Farmers who will be feeding thousands of athletes, media and visitors coming to the UK during the Games.
“So we would love to hear from any farmers – young, old and in between – who would like to come forward to be filmed for this project.
“The Olympics is an iconic event and we need to show the world what wonderful food we produce in Staffordshire and why people should want to come and taste it. Please do not be shy and get in contact.”
Jon Fairburn, of Staffordshire University’s Business School, led the bid for a Research Informed Teaching Grant to fund the project, which forms part of the BSc(Hons) Film Technology degree at Staffordshire University.
He said: “This is a very innovative project with the Business School and Film Technology combining to market Staffordshire. Rural areas in Staffordshire have traditionally lost out when it comes to support from rural enterprises so we are very happy to make our contribution to supporting the rural economy.”
There are 120 first year students taking part in the project, in 18 groups. Each group has creative freedom and will profile a different farmer or food producer from Staffordshire.
The films will be completed by Christmas, when a panel of judges will select their favourite and award £250 to the winning team.
James Fair, Film Technology lecturer at Staffordshire University, said: “The plan is to make an online viral campaign. So the students need to think about how to promote the food producers in three minutes.
“There is also a plan to introduce QR codes – which are basically bar codes on food products – that consumers can scan with a smart phone and be taken directly to these online videos to see where their food has come from.”
He added: “The project forms part of a module of assessed work for the students, so it’s part of their course as well as being great industry experience.
“This is their first project; to work to a real world brief. It demonstrates the sort of practical, hands-on teaching that we promote here, at Staffordshire University.”
Any farmers or food producers based in Staffordshire who would like to take part in the Farmers on Film project – or would simply like more information – should contact Sarah Gayton on 07903 155858 or email email@example.com.
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