Sunshine Coast, Australia: Supported by the Queensland Government, the fifth annual Sunshine Coast Real Food Festival is expecting 10,000 visitors through the gate over the Festival weekend and will have over 100 food exhibitors.
The event will host an impressive line-up of chefs celebrating the Coast produce including the force behind Brisbane’s Moda Restaurant and Moda Events Portside, Javier Codina.
Javier said he is really looking forward to showcasing his Catalan (north eastern Spain) style of cooking at the festival but said his festival highlight will be meeting the local growers, producers and makers.
“My creative inspiration always emanates from fresh ingredients. My family will be joining me on the day so it will also be fun and educational for my three boys. We need to encourage everyone to eat locally as much as possible, and support ethical small producers, preparing food simply to enjoy the natural flavours,” Javier said.
French born, Maison de Provence owner and pastry chef, Eric Pernoud, will be whipping up a dessert in front of festival-goers featuring local strawberries from Cooloola Berries.
“The Real Food Festival is a great event for the whole family, it brings people together and showcases the best produce our region has to offer, we are looking forward to enjoying the day as a family after I present,” Eric said.
But it’s not just Queensland chefs that will be celebrating Sunshine Coast produce – this year the Real Food Festival has more on offer than ever before – with more than 50 presentations across seven venues from chefs, food producers and experts.
The venues within the festival will include the Real Food Kitchen, Food for Thought, Nourishing Ideas, Food Craft, Kitchen Garden and two new venues – the Coffee Pavilion and Eat My Words venue, which will focus on food writing, food bloggers, cookbook authors and restaurant reviewers. There are also lots of great kids activities in the Little Sprouts area and more than 100 individual Sunshine Coast producers exhibiting.
“It shows just how the Sunshine Coast food industry and the festival is evolving,” Festival Director Julie Shelton, Festival Director, said.
Accredited practising dietitian, Cherie Hugo will highlight to festival goers in the Nourishing Ideas venue, the importance of older people having access to fresh food and receiving the nutrition they need to enjoy the quality of life they deserve.
“Between 50–80 per cent of aged care residents in Australia are malnourished, and the community needs to work together to find a tangible solution,” she said.
The Real Food Festival will be held at the Maleny Showgrounds, 13 Stanley River Road, Maleny on September 12-13 from 9am to 4pm daily. Entry is $20 for a daily adult pass and children under 16 are free.