The Food Programme

BBC Radio 4


Investigating every aspect of the food we eat

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Women & Beer

28:20 | Jun 11th, 2017

Think beer. Think boys with beards? Think again. The last time Sheila Dillon reported on the women in British beer, in 2013, she met Sara Barton head brewer at Brewster's brewery in Lincolnshire. At the time Sara was the only woman head brewer in the...Show More

Would you let a robot cook you dinner?

28:38 | Mar 24th

Robots are building burgers, stretching dough in pizzerias and cooking up a media storm. Soon, they could deliver our groceries, invent recipes using machine learning and cook in our homes with arms dangling down either side of our stoves. But should...Show More

Delicious and Endangered: The Story of Bluefin Tuna

28:20 | Mar 17th

Dan Saladino travels from Brixham to Tokyo in search of Bluefin tuna. In recent months there have been more sightings of the endangered fish in British waters but does that mean we can eat them? The Bluefin is the rarest, most valuable and at ris...Show More

A different kind of S.W.A.T team

28:07 | Mar 10th

10 years ago, Randeep Singh and his colleagues had a moment of realisation. More than 200 people in their immediate local community were living without a home. They were hidden from normal life, living beneath bridges or in refuse collection rooms. T...Show More

Why is CBD on everyone's lips?

27:55 | Mar 4th

CBD Gummies, CBD croissants, CBD coffee, CBD pesto, CBD beer... CBD is everywhere. Presenter Charlotte Smith tells the story of how this oil from cannabis that doesn’t get you high is becoming the biggest buzzword in food and drink from its beginnin...Show More

The Secret Life of Spaghetti

28:03 | Feb 25th

Dan Saladino looks at our long and tangled relationship with spaghetti. Both carbs and meat are under scrutiny and Mintel, which monitors consumer behaviour around the world, says we're eating less pasta. With that in mind Dan explore the past, prese...Show More

Should I boycott palm oil?

28:37 | Feb 17th

You will have heard of palm oil... but do you really know why? Possibly the things that come to mind are orangutans, deforestation. Perhaps you know that most of it is grown in Malaysia and Indonesia? Maybe you were aware of the frozen food specialis...Show More

Curry house crisis... where are the women?

27:59 | Feb 10th

The British Asian restaurant sector says it's suffering the consequence of major staff shortages. Many high street takeaways and curry houses are facing closure. While restaurants search for a solution, some are questioning whether enough is being do...Show More

Who are the new generation shaking up the food system?

28:45 | Feb 3rd

Who are the new voices pushing for change in the food system? Sheila Dillon hears from Alice Thompson of Social Bite, a charity that distributes over 100,000 hot drinks and meals to Scotland’s most vulnerable people every year from its sandwich shops...Show More

What does a no-deal Brexit mean for our food?

29:03 | Jan 27th

With just over 60 days before we're set to leave the EU Dan Saladino gathers thoughts along the food supply chain, from farmers and retailers to exporters and so called "preppers", on the prospects of a no deal Brexit. The likes of the British Retai...Show More

The one where we talk about deep fried Mars Bars

27:32 | Jan 20th

Deep frying our food is a fast efficient way of cooking and it's not new.The ancient Greeks staged comedies involving frying pans. The Romans fried fish in copious amounts of oil. But these days deep frying often gets a bad press. British chip shops...Show More

Feeding the Falklands

27:47 | Jan 13th

Would you buy a pineapple for £15? The Falkland Islands provides much of the squid we eat in Europe. And they can produce more lamb and beef than they could possibly eat. But some food - like fruit - is not so easy to get hold of. Gerard Baker meets ...Show More

Dog's Dinner

28:02 | Jan 7th

Premium pet food has become big business. In the past year, loving dog owners in the UK spent 379 million pounds on posh nosh for their pooches. What's more, more and more of us are seeking out humanised doggie dining experiences as well... Accompa...Show More

Weak, small and free: How no and low alcohol is finding power without strength

28:38 | Dec 30th, 2018

As people cut down and cut out booze, no and low alcohol drinks are pouring onto the market. Brewer Jaega wise explores this show against strength that's shaking up alcohol sector. Jane Peyton from the School of Booze puts on a tasting session at Lon...Show More

Nigella Lawson: A Life Through Food

34:38 | Dec 25th, 2018

"I am not a chef. I am not even a trained or professional cook. My qualification is as an eater." So writes Nigella Lawson in the preface to her first book 'How To Eat', published 20 years ago. In this programme, Nigella shares the food memories, ...Show More

The Changing World of Chocolate

28:31 | Dec 16th, 2018

Presenter Charlotte Smith puts down her beloved Kit Kat to discover a world of rich, bitter and often rather pricey chocolate as she explores how small producers and big manufacturers are adapting to demands for less sugar and less dairy but hopefull...Show More

Sweet Chestnuts

28:31 | Dec 9th, 2018

Rachel Roddy and Sheila Dillon share their love of Sweet Chestnuts and find out how they're for so much more than just roasting over an open fire. Like a lot of people Rachel's first memories of Chestnuts is as stuffing for turkey, but when she move...Show More

Cookbooks of 2018

28:39 | Dec 2nd, 2018

Sheila Dillon is joined by cook and food-writer Chetna Makan, Tom Tivnan from The Bookseller’—the book industry’s bible, and Kate Young who won the Guild of Food Writers Blogger of the Year award in 2017 discuss the cookbooks of 2018. The list inclu...Show More

The Food and Medicine Debate

28:29 | Nov 25th, 2018

Food as part of a prescription for health and wellbeing. What has gone wrong with our diets in the UK and how are doctors and experts trying to redress the balance to get us well again. Sheila Dillon and a group of food, diet and medical experts con...Show More

The Big Carb Debate

28:23 | Nov 18th, 2018

The Food Programme invites a panel of four to discuss the merits of a low versus high carbohydrate diet. Following up on the issues raised in discussing the government's dietary advice in the Eatwell Guide a panel including Duane Mellor of the Univ...Show More

Cambodia's Forgotten Food

28:08 | Nov 12th, 2018

Food writer, chef and presenter Genevieve Taylor tells the story of how Cambodia’s cooking history was almost lost in the genocide that saw millions die in the mid-1970s. While food from its neighbours Thailand and Vietnam was spreading all over the ...Show More

How Instagram changed food

27:59 | Nov 6th, 2018

How Instagram changed food - with journalist George Reynolds and Anissa Helou, the author of Feast. Plus @pleesecakes reveals the secrets to 147k followers in just 18 months; @felicityspector on whether she's an influencer or not; top chefs at Aqua...Show More

May Contain Nuts

28:39 | Oct 28th, 2018

Following the recent high-profile cases involving food allergy deaths, Bee Wilson investigates whether labelling needs to go further to protect allergy sufferers. Bee asks if the growing number of people suffering from food allergies could be due to ...Show More

A Vintage Year for Homegrown Wine

28:23 | Oct 21st, 2018

After the summer heatwave, Master of Wine Susie Barrie meets winemakers bringing in what could be a watershed harvest for homegrown wine. On a tour of the south of England she visits Peter Hall who's been making wine for 40 years in his isolated Brea...Show More

The C Word

28:13 | Oct 14th, 2018

Foxwhelp, cat's head, sheep's nose, hen's turd, yellow willy .... did you know there are over 200 varieties of cider apple? Jaega Wise of Wild Card brewery knows her beer and hops, but not so much her apple types. With cider production in full autumn...Show More

How to Feed a Fresher

27:30 | Oct 7th, 2018

It’s fresher’s week, and all over the country students are settling in to their new digs, frantically buying kettles, figuring out the microwave settings and stocking up on beans. Or are they? We all know the stereotypes about what university studen...Show More

The Meat-Free Meat Movement

28:42 | Oct 1st, 2018

Meat-free meat is having a moment. As more and more people move to a plant-based diet the range of steaks, burgers, hams - almost any meat product you can think of is available without the meat. Usually when we think of vegan and vegetarian dishes we...Show More

Stories for a harvest moon

27:56 | Sep 25th, 2018

Stories of harvest from around the UK to celebrate the autumn equinox and the passing of the summer. Presented by Andi Oliver Produced by Siobhan Maguire and Clare Salisbury

Rowley Leigh: A Life Through Food

27:43 | Sep 16th, 2018

Rowley Leigh, to many the "godfather" of modern British cooking tells his story to Dan Saladino. Along the way he cooks the perfect omelette and shares the secrets of great pasta. After dropping out of university at the end of the 1960s, Rowley Leig...Show More

The carnivore's guide to meat and fire

28:32 | Sep 11th, 2018

Meat, drink, fire and bands - every year top chefs gather in London for a hearty celebration that has become a carnivore's delight. Tim Hayward arrived fork in hand to see if there is any substance to the Meatopia craze. Lennox Hastie, 'Lord Logs' Ma...Show More

Label This!

33:59 | Sep 2nd, 2018

Sheila Dillon investigates the world of food and drink labelling; what has to go on, what doesn't, how we got here - and where things might be going. A complex legislative framework has built up over many years in the UK - Sheila looks at the shape ...Show More

Seeds: a 400-million-year-old food story

28:40 | Aug 26th, 2018

Dan Saladino and food historian Polly Russell share stories of seeds as told at this year's Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery. From the link between amaranth and cannibalism to edible acorns. Founded in 1981 the Symposium takes a theme and invite...Show More

There's More to Mangoes

28:28 | Aug 19th, 2018

There are hundreds, maybe thousands, of varieties of mango. Some creamy and sweet, some a bit hot, some like pineapple and some that are just a bit bland. Unfortunately it's the latter that are usually peeled, chopped and potted for us on supermarket...Show More

Shetland- A Food Homecoming

27:53 | Aug 12th, 2018

Sheila Dillon visits Shetland to meet the people transforming Shetland's food culture by reinventing traditional dishes as well as creating new food initiatives. Social media is playing a huge part in promoting a vibrant, young food scene that is att...Show More

Keep It Sticky: The Extraordinary Story of Chef Marcus Samuelsson.

27:35 | Aug 5th, 2018

Harlem based chef Marcus Samuelsson was born in Ethiopia, adopted in Sweden and made his reputation in New York City. He tells Dan Saladino his extraordinary story through food. The third of The Food Programme's 2018 season of African food stories. ...Show More

Music and Food: Sounds Delicious!

28:13 | Jul 29th, 2018

Dan Saladino explores the relationship between tunes and taste with Andi Oliver on the link between Sam Cooke and roast chicken and chef Stephen Harris on food and The Buzzcocks. Produced and presented by Dan Saladino.

Richard Corrigan: A Life Through Food

28:21 | Jul 22nd, 2018

Richard Corrigan's is a story of Ireland, the story of a turning point in British food culture and the story of a deep connection to the land and its produce. But most of all it is the story of a man committed to his principles in a notoriously unfor...Show More

Birmingham's Beloved Balti

28:39 | Jul 15th, 2018

For food writer Yasmin Khan, the Balti conjures up family meals out in her childhood home of Birmingham where she would regularly tuck into deep bowls of the city's most iconic dish -- richly spiced chicken or lamb, that she scooped up with freshly m...Show More

Cycling and Food: Fuelling the Peloton

28:14 | Jul 8th, 2018

To celebrate the start of the Tour de France, cycling presenter and former racer Rebecca Charlton takes you behind the scenes at one of the world's biggest bike events to find the race is on in the kitchen to fuel riders who need to eat up to 8,000 c...Show More

Unedited: Sheila Dillon's interview with Prof. Louis Levy of Public Health England

16:50 | Jul 2nd, 2018

This week's programme about the Eatwell Guide featured an interview with Prof. Louis Levy from Public Health England. This is the unedited version of his interview with Sheila Dillon.

The Eatwell Guide

28:29 | Jul 2nd, 2018

Sheila Dillon questions whether the government's Eatwell Plate that's issued to the medical profession and used as public guidance for a balanced diet could actually be harming us. An increasing number of medics are abandoning the plate because they ...Show More

What's Eating The Restaurant Trade?

28:09 | Jun 24th, 2018

Grace Dent, restaurant critic and broadcaster asks what's going wrong in the restaurant trade. With hundreds of small and large food outlets closing their doors, some say the restaurant business is in crisis, yet many argue that as an industry its co...Show More

BBC Food and Farming Awards 2018: Second Course

27:44 | Jun 19th, 2018

Sheila Dillon presents the people and the stories behind this year's Food and Farming Awards. Hear the winner of this year's Derek Cooper Outstanding Achievement Award, join Adam Henson and Charlotte Smith as they go in search of the farmers in the r...Show More

BBC Food and Farming Awards 2018: First Course

24:20 | Jun 19th, 2018

Andi Oliver, Alex James and Matt Tebbutt join Sheila Dillon for a night once dubbed 'the Oscars of the food world'; the BBC Food and Farming Awards 2018. The night that the country's best loved chefs, cooks and food writers gather to celebrate unsung...Show More

Street Food 2018

28:15 | Jun 11th, 2018

As part of the BBC Food and Farming Awards Nigel Barden and Tom Parker Bowles met an amazing array of street food vendors. In this programme Nigel tells the finalist's stories and visits KERB market in Camden to hear how the industry is rapidly evolv...Show More

The Mothership of Brewing: Beer and the Belgians

27:54 | Jun 3rd, 2018

Dan Saladino and drinks writer Pete Brown find out why Belgium beer is so influential.

Life-changing Food

28:12 | Jun 1st, 2018

From prisons to research chefs, Sheila Dillon and chef Romy Gill hear how food is used around the country to transform lives. As judges on the 2018 BBC Food & Farming Awards, Romy Gill and writer Kathleen Kerridge visited three finalists in the UK ...Show More

Food Stories From Syria (3)

28:16 | May 20th, 2018

Europe's migrant crisis is far from over. Already in 2018, the UN's refugee agency (UNHCR) estimate that more than 24, 475 people have arrived in Europe by sea. 609 people are dead or missing since January*. The conflict in Syria is now into its 7th ...Show More

Japanese Whisky: A Beginners Guide

31:41 | May 14th, 2018

Dan Saladino goes on a journey through the history, culture and flavours of Japanese whisky. Why and how has this nation taken a drink so strongly associated with Scotland and made it their own? In 2001, the drinks world started to pay attention to ...Show More

Jollof Rice

27:34 | May 11th, 2018

Across West Africa, jollof rice is more than simply a staple food. It's the dish of home kitchens, of weddings and parties, something cooks take serious pride in. But take any notice of the newspapers, and recently it has also become one of the most ...Show More

The BBC Food & Farming Awards 2018: Finalist stories

28:22 | Apr 30th, 2018

You know their names, now Sheila Dillon helps tell the stories of the finalists in the BBC Food and Farming Awards 2018. For the last month, our judges, including Tim Hayward, Andi Oliver, Tom Parker-Bowles and Romy Gill have travelled the length and...Show More

Is There a Place for Salt?

28:40 | Apr 22nd, 2018

Salt has long been prized, but in recent years it has become, for many, something to be avoided: to reduce or even eliminate. At the same time, there are new salt making businesses popping up all over the UK, celebrating salts with - they claim - uni...Show More

The Sugar Tax: A (Short) History

28:30 | Apr 15th, 2018

Dan Saladino looks behind the headlines of the newly introduced sugar tax.

Northern Ireland: Food at a Crossroads

28:03 | Apr 15th, 2018

Sheila Dillon travels from the border to Belfast to learn why Northern Irish food has blossomed in recent years and what leaving the EU could mean for producers.

The Power of Food: Parabere Forum.

28:36 | Apr 1st, 2018

Dan Saladino reports from Parabere Forum, with five life changing food stories. At the annual gathering for women working in food Dan finds unexpected and inspirational stories. Produced and presented by Dan Saladino.

Doctor's Orders: Getting Tomorrow's Medics Cooking

28:20 | Mar 25th, 2018

The NHS is at crisis point. Despite the diet books, the fitness videos, the health bloggers, in 2016, Public Health England estimated that Illness associated with lifestyle costs the NHS £11 billion every year. But are we missing something obvious?...Show More

The Future of Bread

28:58 | Mar 19th, 2018

Dan Saladino talks to Modernist Bread author, Nathan Myhrvold, about one of the biggest bread research projects ever undertaken, which involved the baking of 36,000 loaves. Nathan Myhrvold has spent his life trying to understand how things work, he...Show More

African Food

28:20 | Mar 11th, 2018

It's a matter of course that in January, food writers, critics and chefs try to predict the food trends of the year ahead. And if you trawled the columns in 2018, no doubt you would have found 'African food' among them. For Zoe Adjonyoh, restaurate...Show More

Eat to Run, Part 3

53:33 | Mar 9th, 2018

Dan Saladino meets the runners convinced low or no carbs is the way to peak performance.

The Big Pig Roadtrip

28:05 | Mar 4th, 2018

Tim Hayward embarks on the big pig road trip to meet some of the people who devote their lives to rare breeds of British pigs. He speaks to Adam Henson, best-known as a presenter on BBC One's Countryfile, about why pigs like the Gloucester Old Spot a...Show More

Comfort food for dark days

28:17 | Feb 18th, 2018

Sheila Dillon celebrates the power of food to comfort us in hard times, especially during these dark days of the year. Dumplings, marshmallows, chicken soup, fried chicken, curried goat: all the things we long to eat when we're sad, or sick, or homes...Show More

The Vegetable Yoda: Charlie Hicks

27:34 | Feb 11th, 2018

Sheila Dillon and Dan Saladino pay tribute to greengrocer extraordinaire, the late, great and encyclopaedic Charlie Hicks with help from Jamie Oliver, Gregg Wallace and Raymond Blanc. Many radio listeners will remember Charlie Hicks as a co-present...Show More

The World Service Cookbook

27:59 | Feb 4th, 2018

When the BBC World Service's Language Services moved into New Broadcasting House in central London, different services would take it in turns to host a 'Meet-Your-Neighbour' event to introduce themselves to other parts of the BBC. People started brin...Show More

Britain's Secret Saffron Story

28:30 | Jan 28th, 2018

Saffron is one of the world's most evocative spices, shrouded in myth and mystery and conjuring up images from the ancient Silk Road. Often seen as 'expensive', 'complicated' or perhaps for a special occasion, for British food writer Yasmin Khan, the...Show More

What Delicious Future?

28:24 | Jan 21st, 2018

Dan Saladino looks at ideas that could make an impact on our food future featuring America's Impossible Burger, a Sardinian maggot infested cheese and mussels being grown in downtown Copenhagen. Most people are aware of the challenges that lie ahea...Show More

The BBC Food & Farming Awards 2018: The Search Begins...

28:12 | Jan 14th, 2018

Where are the cooks changing the lives of their communities? Which food shops or markets make shopping a more unique experience? Who is making the UK a more delicious place through food and drink? Rick Stein, Giorgio Locatelli, Angela Hartnett, Yot...Show More


28:13 | Jan 7th, 2018

The sudden proliferation of porridge is there for all to see, across the country. Café chains like Pret, Starbucks, McDonalds; instant tubs on offer in your local supermarket; on the train, even. Sheila Dillon explores the current fashion for porridg...Show More

The Champagne Underground

28:35 | Dec 31st, 2017

Champagne sceptic Dan Saladino travels to the French region in search of the mavericks of fizz. These wine producers are part of a movement that's causing many to re-evaluate the world's most celebrated bubbles. For many, including Dan, champagne i...Show More

Sheila Dillon's Christmas Dinner

28:28 | Dec 24th, 2017

Sheila Dillon invites some special guests, friends old and new, to come and share a festive meal. Before they start to arrive, Nigel Slater drops by to help Sheila prepare. Each visitor will bring a dish, or a drink, that for them captures something...Show More

The World's Most Popular Cheese: The Story of Cheddar

28:12 | Dec 18th, 2017

Dan Saladino reports on the past, present and future of what's thought to be the world's most widely produced and consumed cheese, Cheddar. Dan also meets producers who are trying to discover what cheddar might have tasted like more than a century ag...Show More


28:19 | Dec 10th, 2017

We have a national passion for crisps. Every week, on average, each person in Britain eats 4 bags of crisps - a staggering 240 million bags a week. This is a good moment to look more closely at crisps, since this year they celebrate their bicentenary...Show More

Cookbooks of 2017

35:44 | Dec 3rd, 2017

It's that time of year when Sheila Dillon and special guests take a close look at the food, cookery and drink books of 2017. Joining Sheila are the food writer Bee Wilson, and the Features Editor at the book trade magazine The Bookseller, Tom Tivnan...Show More

Food on the Edge (A Food Story Mix-Tape)

28:34 | Nov 27th, 2017

Dan Saladino is at Food On The Edge, a gathering of people with food stories to tell; from a Black Panther breakfast to a chef convinced her emotions could be detected in her food. Held in Galway, the west of Ireland each year chef JP McMahon invite...Show More

Young and Vegan

28:46 | Nov 19th, 2017

The number of young people turning vegan is rising. Grace Dent meets some of the people opening vegan eateries and finds out how creatives are using social media to further the "vegangelical" cause. Grace goes to the Hackney Downs Vegan Market to s...Show More


27:53 | Nov 13th, 2017

With Catalonia in the midst of a political crisis, Sheila Dillon travels to the region just as they self-declared independence and discovers how the spirit of the region and its people are very much reflected in their passion for food.

The Art of Fermentation - A Masterclass

28:35 | Nov 4th, 2017

Dan Saladino gets a practical masterclass with the world-renowned teacher and author of 'The Art of Fermentation' - Sandor Ellix Katz. Presenter: Dan Saladino Producer: Rich Ward.

More Problems with Poultry?

27:59 | Oct 30th, 2017

Following years of reporting on UK chicken scandals, Dan Saladino looks at investigations now underway by The Food Standards Agency and MPs into practices at supplier 2 Sisters.

How We Eat: 4. Eating as a Family

28:02 | Oct 23rd, 2017

In this final programme of the series How We Eat, Sheila Dillon explores eating as a family, the reality and the myth. As working hours increase and with both parents working, it becomes more and more difficult to sit down together with the children ...Show More

How We Eat: 3. Eating By The Rules

28:07 | Oct 16th, 2017

Increasing numbers of people in Britain seem to eat according to very clearly defined rules, from fashionable Clean Eaters to religious believers to professional sportspeople. In this third programme in the series How we Eat, Sheila Dillon talks to t...Show More

How We Eat: 2. Eating with Strangers

28:04 | Oct 9th, 2017

What happens when you share a meal with strangers? What chemistry fizzes around the table, what bonds are formed, what happens next? In this programme Sheila Dillon talks to people who believe that eating with strangers is the greatest pleasure in li...Show More

How We Eat: 1. Eating Alone

27:56 | Oct 2nd, 2017

How we eat says so much about us. Where we come from, our family background, our feelings about our bodies even - our appetite for all kinds of pleasure... There was a time when how we eat was mostly about class, but whether you called it "tea" or "d...Show More

The BBC Food & Farming Awards 2017

52:07 | Sep 26th, 2017

Sheila Dillon presents the highlights of this year's awards with Giorgio Locatelli

Future Food

24:10 | Sep 18th, 2017

Seaweed, hydroponics and seeds. Dan Saladino meets the 'Future Food' finalists in the 2017 BBC Food and Farming Awards, and asks what their stories tell us about the future of what, and how, we all eat. Presenter: Dan Saladino Producer: Rich Ward.

Zero Compromise: A (Georgian) Natural Wine Story.

36:30 | Sep 11th, 2017

Dan Saladino travels into the Caucasus in search of "zero compromise" natural wine makers. He finds them in Georgia, thought to be the birthplace of wine, and home of the qvevri.

Feast Like a Georgian: A Food Guide to the Caucasus.

28:36 | Sep 3rd, 2017

Dan Saladino travels to a Georgia, considered to be an undiscovered food and drink gem at the heart of the meeting point between Europe and Asia. Food writer Carla Capalbo, author of Tasting Georgia: A food and wine journey in the Caucasus guides D...Show More

Salt Fish

28:14 | Aug 27th, 2017

Once a cheap dish to feed workers, salted cod has been preserved by cooks around the world who serve it to celebrate: On Sundays, at Carnival, at Christmas. It's an ingredient which has played a part in the forming of empires, fuelled armies and cure...Show More

Chef Stress

28:36 | Aug 21st, 2017

Dan Saladino investigates current pressures on chefs and the darker side of the restaurant kitchen. From breakdowns to addictions, is it a profession with more problems than most? Dan hears from a range of chefs who open up about the way their chose...Show More

Dishing The Dirt on Clean Eating

28:10 | Aug 13th, 2017

Grace Dent discovers what has made Anthony Warner into the Angry Chef and unpicks the role that social media plays in spurring people towards diet plans and 'healthy-eating' regimes Anthony set up a blog last year to vent his fury at what he describ...Show More

Patience Gray: A Life Through Food

28:14 | Aug 6th, 2017

"Poverty rather than wealth gives the good things of life their true significance. Home-made bread rubbed with garlic and sprinkled with olive oil, shared - with a flask of wine - between working people, can be more convivial than any feast." So writ...Show More

Summer camping special

33:24 | Jul 30th, 2017

Sheila Dillon and The Food Programme team go camping, to discover the possibilities of food and drink in the outdoors. Joining Sheila around a Monmouthshire campfire are BBC 6Music presenter Cerys Matthews, author of 'How to Eat Outside' Genevieve T...Show More

Greece: Return to the land?

28:19 | Jul 23rd, 2017

This week, Sheila Dillon is in Greece to speak to farmers and food producers about how they are carving new lives for themselves out of the financial crisis. Greeks have now lived through seven years of austerity after the most catastrophic Europea...Show More

Sandor Katz and the Art of Fermentation

27:30 | Jul 16th, 2017

Sandor Katz has been enchanted by fermentation, the mysterious process by which microbes transform food and drink, for some two decades. Since making his first crock of sauerkraut, his fascination with fermentation has broadened, deepened, and he now...Show More

Hunting With The Hadza 2: The Microbiome.

28:15 | Jul 12th, 2017

Dan Saladino asks if hunter gatherers, the Hadza tribe, hold the key to our future health. Presented and produced by Dan Saladino.

Hunting with the Hadza

28:39 | Jul 2nd, 2017

Dan Saladino eats with one of the last remaining hunter gatherer tribes, Tanzania's Hadza.

Diet and Dementia: An Update

48:16 | Jun 25th, 2017

What can I do? That was the question posed to us by Food Programme listener Angie Roberts who cares for her mother Clara. Clara, like 850 thousand others in the UK, has dementia, and meal times were making her anxious. 9 months on from our last edit...Show More

Alastair Little: A Life through Food

28:23 | Jun 18th, 2017

As he prepares to move to Australia, leaving a lasting culinary legacy here in the UK, chef and food writer Alastair Little shares his life in food with Sheila Dillon. Born in Lancashire, from a very early age Alastair Little paid careful attention ...Show More

Cult Fiction and Food

39:26 | Jun 5th, 2017

From Confederacy of Dunces to Absolute Beginners and On The Road, Dan Saladino explores cult novels to find out how writers Jack Kerouac, Colin MacInnes and John Kenney Toole used food. Authors have always used food and drink in their narratives to ...Show More


28:25 | May 28th, 2017

Sheila Dillon takes a journey into the culinary use, history and the latest medical findings about turmeric. Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is a member of the ginger family of plants - and its rhizome, the part mainly used in cooking, has a deep orange-go...Show More

Mac 'n' Cheese

27:59 | May 21st, 2017

Sheila Dillon charts the rise of the humble mac'n'cheese: a dish that crosses culture and classes and has established itself as a popular comfort food across the world. We discover the history of the dish. Food historian Polly Russell tells us how a...Show More

The Chef Who Vanished - The Story of Jeremiah Tower

28:23 | May 15th, 2017

At the age of 30, with no formal training, Jeremiah Tower became a chef. His approach to cooking changed the food world for good, then he walked away. Dan Saladino tells the story of the man who many consider to be the first "celebrity chef". The fo...Show More

The Herbal World of Jekka McVicar

28:21 | May 8th, 2017

Culinary herb grower Jekka McVicar shares her life through food with Sheila Dillon. Taking a walk through the small herb farm where Jekka grows some 600 varieties of herb (300 of them culinary), Sheila discovers a world of ancient knowledge, vivid fl...Show More

Out Like a Lamb

28:07 | Apr 30th, 2017

Lamb. Long a staple of the UK dinner table. But one glance at the statistics and it's obvious that 'Generation Y' aren't inspired. Estimates suggest under 30s are buying just 15g of lamb a week. That's just over 10 lamb chops in a year and less than ...Show More

The Potato

28:19 | Apr 23rd, 2017

Sheila Dillon digs up the remarkable story of how potatoes changed the world, offer a whole spectrum of flavour, and might shape our food future. With Sheila are cook and food writer Anna Jones, Charles C. Mann - author of '1493 - How Europe's Disco...Show More

Food Stories from Venezuela Part 2: Maria Fernanda Di Giacobbe

28:10 | Apr 18th, 2017

Dan Saladino meets a woman who believes Venezuela's escape from crisis rests on chocolate. Maria Fernanda Di Giacobbe is on a mission to reclaim her country's former cacao bean glory.

Food Stories from Venezuela: Eating in a Failed State.

28:09 | Apr 10th, 2017

Venezuela is seeing its worst economic crisis in living memory. As some of the most basic ingredients become unavailable or unaffordable Dan Saladino tells the food story.


28:18 | Apr 4th, 2017

Blood in food is about as divisive as it comes. But Tim Hayward loves it. A rare steak, a carefully crisped slice of black pudding, a blood meringue...? In this programme Tim meets butchers, cooks and chefs determined to put blood back on the dining...Show More

Chef Dan Barber: The Third Plate

28:25 | Mar 26th, 2017

Dan Saladino profiles the influential US chef and writer Dan Barber, author of 'The Third Plate - Field Notes on the Future of Food'. Originally with plans to become a novelist, Dan Barber opened his first restaurant, Blue Hill, in Greenwich Village ...Show More

BBC Food & Farming Awards 2017: The Finalists

28:17 | Mar 20th, 2017

You've cast your nominations in the thousands. Now it's time to reveal who's in the running in the BBC Food & Farming Awards 2017. Judges including Giorgio Locatelli, Joanna Blythman, Allegra McEvedy, Stefan Gates, Romy Gill and Gill Meller help Shei...Show More

Tea: A Coffee Drinker's Guide, Part 2

28:41 | Mar 13th, 2017

Do we pay enough for tea? Dan Saladino - a long-term and deeply committed coffee drinker - continues his look at our love affair with the leaf. Dan catches up with the BBC's South Asia Correspondent Justin Rowlatt, who has reported on conditions for...Show More

Tea: A Coffee Drinker's Guide

28:17 | Mar 6th, 2017

Hardened coffee drinker Dan Saladino investigates tea's past, present and future and finds out how our preference for the leaf has changed over three centuries. He visits the location of Britain's first tea retailer, hears the adventures of legendary...Show More

Thailand: A Royal Food Legacy

28:15 | Feb 26th, 2017

Historian Dr Polly Russell and chef Ashley Palmer-Watts visit farming communities in the Northern Chang Mai province of Thailand who have given up farming opium in favour of Western vegetables and salad crops for fine dining restaurants in Thailand's...Show More

Let's Do Lunch

28:03 | Feb 19th, 2017

What did you eat for lunch today? Whatever you ate, according to our recent national survey you took less than half an hour to do it. Twenty five minutes twenty four to be precise. We're living in an era of grab-and-go. It's a sector of the food ind...Show More


28:29 | Feb 12th, 2017

Sheila Dillon goes on a citrus journey, discovering vivid flavour possibilities and hidden histories. Joining Sheila are Catherine Phipps, food writer and creator of a new book 'Citrus - Recipes that Celebrate the Sour and the Sweet' out this week, ...Show More


28:31 | Feb 6th, 2017

What can one single dish can tell you about America's history? One particular bowl of soup gives us an insight about the future of cultures that convene around it. Gumbo is eaten by nearly everyone in New Orleans, but its past speaks of the deep ineq...Show More

Leah Chase: The cook who changed America

28:12 | Jan 30th, 2017

Meet 94 four year old Leah Chase. For seventy years she has led the kitchen at New Orleans famous Dooky Chase restaurant. During her time she's hosted US Presidents, and civil rights activists, and music legends from Ray Charles to Michael Jackson. ...Show More

Lancashire: My Food Roots

28:26 | Jan 26th, 2017

Sheila Dillon returns to her food roots in Lancashire, meeting people doing and creating extraordinary things - from food producers, to cooks to campaigners. As nominations come in for the 2017 BBC Food and Farming Awards, celebrating people and busi...Show More

Introducing... The BBC Food and Farming Awards 2017

27:52 | Jan 15th, 2017

The BBC Food & Farming Awards are back. Based on public nominations, the awards celebrate the unsung heroes of UK food and farming; From school cooks to chip shops, from cider makers to supermarkets, corner shops to carrot farmers. In the awards' 1...Show More

Belfast: Creating a New Food Tradition

28:06 | Jan 8th, 2017

In this series of four programmes broadcast over Christmas and the New Year, Sheila Dillon explores the link between tradition and food. Sheila ends the series by exploring the creation of a new food culture - in Northern Ireland. It started with t...Show More

Loch Fyne: Celebrating Food Tradition

28:04 | Jan 1st, 2017

In this series of four programmes broadcast over the Christmas period, Sheila Dillon explores the link between tradition and food. Food can bind a community together, and give it new life. In this third programme of the series, Sheila travels to Lo...Show More

Wild Boar

28:04 | Dec 25th, 2016

In this series of four programmes broadcast over Christmas, Sheila Dillon explores the link between tradition and food. For Christmas Day, Sheila celebrates The Wild Boar Feast - an ancient Viking tradition which still lingers on in Britain (think ...Show More

A Passion for Cake

28:12 | Dec 20th, 2016

In this series of four programmes broadcast over Christmas, Sheila Dillon explores the link between tradition and food. First, in the run-up to Christmas, she takes an irreverent look at baking - and the connection between baking and being a "Good ...Show More

The Future of Cheese

28:07 | Dec 12th, 2016

Dan Saladino finds out what the future holds for cheese, including the role of raw milk. It's a story of microbes, mystery, discord and symphony. Dan is joined by Bronwen Percival, cheese buyer for Neal's Yard Dairy and contributor to the new Oxford...Show More

Sisters' Feast

28:18 | Dec 5th, 2016

'Pop-up' chef and food writer Olia Hercules, The Great British Bake Off contestant turned Youtube star Chetna Makan, Film academic come supper club hostess Dr Alissa Timoshkina and cafe chef / 'instagrammer' / writer Elly Curshen are among ten women ...Show More

Cookbooks of 2016

28:26 | Nov 28th, 2016

Sheila Dillon and guests discuss the year's food and cookery books - focussing on debut food books. Joining Sheila in the studio is cook, gardener and writer Jojo Tulloh, journalist and food writer Alex Renton, and the Features Editor at the trade m...Show More

Our Wild Spice Rack

28:17 | Nov 21st, 2016

Sheila Dillon heads to Galloway, Scotland, to meet forager and wild food teacher Mark Williams - who claims to be able to match anything in our spice racks with flavours found in the wild, in the UK. Can he assemble a 'native spice rack'? What might ...Show More

Cooking clubs in Basqueland

28:17 | Nov 14th, 2016

Spain's Basque region exerts a powerful influence on global cuisine, Dan Saladino finds out why. Heston Blumenthal and writer Harold Mcgee provide insights into this food culture.

Gavin and the Chinese Food Olympics

28:09 | Nov 7th, 2016

Every four years, the most established names in Chinese cuisine pitch their skills against each other in an international competition which has become known as the Olympics of Chinese food. This year the World Championship for Chinese Cuisine was hel...Show More

Pumpkins and Winter Squash

28:28 | Nov 1st, 2016

Sheila Dillon and special guests discover a delicious world of pumpkins and winter squash. It's Halloween time, and pumpkins are making their annual appearance in windows and on doorsteps. But these winter squash are part of a fascinating family of ...Show More

Terra Madre Part 2: A Global Food Gathering

28:14 | Oct 24th, 2016

From ancient Egyptian bread to Native American food, Dan Saladino reports from Terra Madre.

Terra Madre Part 1: A Global Food Gathering

27:34 | Oct 17th, 2016

Dan Saladino reports from Slow Food's global food event Terra Madre with stories from Africa. Terra Madre (aka Mother Earth) is probably one of the world's biggest gatherings around food. Thousands of farmers, cooks and producers travel from 140 co...Show More

The Apple: How British a Fruit?

31:23 | Oct 9th, 2016

As apple fairs and celebrations are held all around the country, Sheila Dillon travels to an orchard in Devon for a conversation with drinks writer Pete Brown, who has just written a book about his two-year journey into all things apple: 'The Apple O...Show More

Diet and Dementia

48:33 | Oct 3rd, 2016

For the 850 thousand families in the UK living with dementia, the simple daily practise of eating a meal can escalate into a dreaded challenge. Spurred on by a listener's personal experience, Sheila Dillon meets people living with dementia to ask how...Show More

Food Stories from Syria 2

36:36 | Sep 28th, 2016

This week, as aid convoys carrying food into Syria have been under attack, Dan Saladino revisits the conflict. A year ago, he reported on how displaced Syrians managed to eat and survive in conflict and its impact on the country's ancient food cultur...Show More

An Antarctic Chef

24:13 | Sep 18th, 2016

Charles Green. Chas to his family, 'cook' to his colleagues. A young baker whose sense of adventure drew him to a career cooking on the sea. You may never have heard of Charles, but you certainly will have heard of an expedition on which he played a ...Show More

Cooking for Poldark

27:54 | Sep 12th, 2016

As the much-anticipated new series of Poldark returns to our screens, most eyes will be on Aidan Turner but behind the scenes a raft of experts has worked to ensure each setting is as accurate to the time as possible - including the food. The Food Pr...Show More

Coffee and the God Shot. The Drinks Menu

42:06 | Sep 6th, 2016

Dan Saladino journeys into coffee's past, present and future. He discovers a world of new flavours, far from his formative espresso experiences in Sicily - and finds that things are more precarious than they may seem. Are we living in a golden age of...Show More

Whisky Britannia: The Drinks Menu

28:24 | Aug 29th, 2016

With 20 million casks lying in storage maturing, Scotch whisky looks set to hold its strong place in the world market for decades to come. It's the third biggest industry in Scotland, contributing £3.3 billion to the economy per year. But the landsca...Show More

Time for an Aperitif? The Drinks Menu

28:10 | Aug 21st, 2016

In French, 'l'aperitif', in Italian, 'l'aperitivo'. We don't of course have a translation in English, but the aperitif, the drinks and snacks which proceed a meal have long captured our imaginations. The sounds and smells of Mediterranean holidays, t...Show More

Roger Protz: A Life Through Beer

28:15 | Aug 15th, 2016

From being tucked under the pub bar stool as a baby to getting into Fleet Street pubs underage, Roger Protz's passion for beer began early. He's spent 40 years on a mission to celebrate and protect brewing traditions - writing about brewing and beers...Show More

The Surprising Strawberry

28:17 | Aug 7th, 2016

2016's strawberry solstice fell as the UK's strawberry pickers embarked on a bigger crop than ever before. Strawberries have become a supermarket staple - no longer a seasonal treat. But as our appetite for the berries has increased, production it se...Show More

Raising the Pulse

28:25 | Aug 1st, 2016

Pulses are little marvels - protein packed lentils, peas and beans are cheap, good for health and help the soil. They're central to many food cultures including Italy and France but as a nation we eat very few other than baked beans. Now the Food and...Show More

A Fat Lot of Good

28:34 | Jul 29th, 2016

The range of fats and oils available to us is growing but the advice has changed dramatically. Sheila Dillon looks to cut through the latest thinking to help gain clarity of which we should be using when. She's joined in the studio by Dr Michael Mo...Show More

Kitchens of Power

27:50 | Jul 29th, 2016

Why is cheese essential when the German Chancellor comes for dinner? Dan Saladino explains why a plate of food shouldn't be taken at face value in this special episode of the Food Programme, made in collaboration with the Food Chain on The World Se...Show More

Albania and the Cheese Road

28:13 | Jul 18th, 2016

Dan Saladino travels on a new road in Albania that leads to an undiscovered cheese world.

School food: An uncertain future

28:14 | Jul 10th, 2016

In 2013, The School Food Plan was published aiming to revolutionise food in schools across England, and to show countries around the world what providing good food in schools could look like. Out of the policy came 'universal infant free school meals...Show More

Brexit and Food: A Food Programme Special

34:39 | Jul 4th, 2016

Dan Saladino outlines the big food issues we're facing because of Brexit. From the impact of a devalued pound to longer term questions over the future of how we farm, produce, buy and sell food. Dan goes on the road in search of answers. The podcas...Show More

That Gut Feeling: Part Two

28:30 | Jun 27th, 2016

Dan Saladino returns to the world of the gut microbiota, the vast array of microbes within us all. From the Amazon Basin to East Africa to the life underneath our feet; food will never be quite the same again. Featuring Tim Spector, author of The Di...Show More

Food, Fishing and the Faroes

30:08 | Jun 20th, 2016

Dan Saladino reports on food, survival and fishing from the Faroe Islands. From fermented sheep's head to whale blubber he finds out how people eat on the remote archipelago. For many generations many of these traditonal foods were only eaten in fami...Show More

That Gut Feeling: Part One

29:24 | Jun 13th, 2016

Dan Saladino discovers the world of the gut microbiota, the vast array of microbes within us all. From East Africa to the White House, it's a story that'll change the way you eat. Dan is joined by Tim Spector, Professor of Genetic Epidemiology at Ki...Show More

An Archive for Food

29:33 | Jun 5th, 2016

In the British Library there is an archive of life story sound recordings which tells the true story of how our food has changed over the past century. Until now, this collection has been accessible only by visiting the British Library. Now, for the ...Show More

Diana Henry: A Life Through Food (Part 2)

47:38 | May 24th, 2016

Food writer Diana Henry has just collected a James Beard Award in America for her latest book 'A Bird in the Hand'. Straight from the plane she joined Sheila Dillon at the Bristol Food Connections Festival. In Part 1 of the interview she shared about...Show More

Best Food Producer: The Winner

27:58 | May 13th, 2016

Part two of a road trip which took BBC Food & Farming Awards judges Yotam Ottolenghi and Sheila Dillon from the Outer Hebrides, to Cheshire's pastures and on to South west Wales. Which is where they met the winners of this year's award. They are Char...Show More

Best Food Producer: The Finalists

27:59 | May 6th, 2016

Yotam Ottolenghi and Sheila Dillon meet BBC Food and Farming Awards's best food producers.

BBC Food and Farming Awards 2016: Special Edition

52:26 | May 5th, 2016

Sheila Dillon presents the 2016 BBC Food & Farming Awards in this extended online special. At the ceremony in Bristol, Sheila and three co-hosts - Yotam Ottolenghi, Angela Hartnett and Stefan Gates - guide us through the stories of the finalists a...Show More

Bristol - A story of a city through its food

28:23 | Apr 24th, 2016

Sheila Dillon and Genevive Taylor explore why Bristol has such a strong food scene.

Food in Extreme Places: Space (3/3)

28:10 | Apr 18th, 2016

Food in the most extreme cooking environment, space. Dan Saladino tries menus for Mars.

Food in Extreme Places: The Submarine (2/3)

28:28 | Apr 11th, 2016

Continuing our series of programmes on cooking and eating in challenging conditions in remote places: The Royal Navy's submarines make their own air and water so food is the one factor limiting how long they can remain at sea. Sheila Dillon explores ...Show More

Food in Extreme Places: Antarctica (1/3)

28:12 | Apr 3rd, 2016

Across all of the world, weather doesn't get more extreme than the Antarctic winter. The continent is plunged into 24 hour darkness from from March to October with strong polar winds and temperatures that can dip to minus 50. But for the staff of the...Show More

Food Is Mad - The Update

27:58 | Mar 24th, 2016

From the guerilla gardener Ron Finley in South Central LA fighting the law to grow vegetables to the project training children in Brazilian favelas to train as chefs, Dan Saladino has shared some inspiring and life changing food projects shared at th...Show More

The Pizza

27:49 | Mar 21st, 2016

Dan Saladino charts the rise, fall and rise of traditional Neapolitan pizza. He's joined by Daniel Young whose "Where to Eat Pizza" lists 1700 great pizzerias around the world. A common theme in the book, Daniel argues, is that after decades of com...Show More


28:11 | Mar 14th, 2016

Fermentation is one of our oldest methods for preserving food. All around the world people have been transforming food with the help of microbes for thousands of years. The problem is, this simple method has had an identity crisis. We tend either see...Show More

BBC Food and Farming Awards 2016: The Finalists

28:10 | Mar 14th, 2016

Sheila Dillon unveils the list of this year's BBC Food & Farming Awards finalists. Presenter: Sheila Dillon Producer: Rich Ward.

The Sake Revelation

28:25 | Mar 7th, 2016

If your experience of sake has been limited to simply 'a hot cup of alcohol after a meal' like Sheila Dillon it's time to listen without prejudice. With thousands of breweries each producing dozens of varieties there is more range than most of us und...Show More

Feeding India

28:13 | Feb 29th, 2016

Dan Saladino explores the fierce debate over how 1.2bn people will be fed in the future.

First Bite

28:02 | Feb 15th, 2016

In her new book, First Bite - How We Learn To Eat, Bee Wilson takes a deep and reflective look at how food choices and habits are shaped, and how they can be changed. Sheila Dillon is joined by Bee Wilson and special guests to discuss the book's sur...Show More

Eating to Run: Part 2

41:19 | Feb 11th, 2016

Ultra-marathon champ and vegan Scott Jurek tells Dan Saladino how to eat and run 100 miles. Fermented food and Paleo diets are also put to the test in Food and Running Part 2.

Newcastle: The Story of a City through Its Food

28:03 | Feb 4th, 2016

Dan Saladino meets the people working to improve the food future of Newcastle.

Cardiff: The Story of a City through Its Food

28:09 | Jan 25th, 2016

Welcome to Cardiff, Croeso i Caerdydd. The capital of Wales and the fastest growing urban population in the UK. For centuries, people have come to the city to live from Wales, and from far beyond the country's borders, attracted by the prospect of a ...Show More

Leeds: The Story of a City Through Its Food

28:12 | Jan 17th, 2016

When the Food Programme went to Leeds to cover its growing food and drink scene many areas of the city had recently been flooded. At the time community groups, including Muslims and Sikhs, were taking part in a food operation to feed those forced out...Show More

2016 Food and Farming Awards Launch

28:16 | Jan 10th, 2016

Sheila Dillon reveals this year's team of judges, and launches the 2016 BBC Food and Farming Awards. Sheila will be catching up with some of last year's winners and nominees and explaining how you can send in your all-important nominations. Presente...Show More

Eating to Run: Part 1

27:12 | Jan 4th, 2016

How important is diet to running performance? It's a question Food Programme listener and runner Nicole Marais wanted answers too and so she emailed the programme's production team. This programme explains what happened next.... When Dan Saladino we...Show More

Yotam Ottolenghi: A Life Through Food

28:14 | Dec 28th, 2015

Food writer, chef, restaurateur, philosopher...? Since 'Ottolenghi: the cookbook' was published in 2008, Yotam Ottolenghi has become one of the UK's most followed voices on food and cooking. Nearly eight years later, Ottolenghi's cookbooks total fiv...Show More

No Mere Trifle

28:30 | Dec 20th, 2015

For some, trifle is an essential part of Christmas - a star centrepiece at the dinner table. For others its a reminder of 70s food hell - soggy sponge, jelly, hundreds and thousands dissolving into custard and cream and possibly crowned with glace ch...Show More

Juliet Harbutt: A Life Through Food

28:04 | Dec 15th, 2015

As she readies herself for an imminent move back to her native New Zealand after three decades in the UK, Juliet Harbutt, cheese educator and campaigner, shares her life in food with Sheila Dillon. Born and raised in Auckland, an experience with so...Show More

Food Museums

27:56 | Dec 6th, 2015

If you were to create a museum telling the story of food and drink what would you say or put on display? What about interactivity - tastes and smells? Is it about flavour and experience or the process of creating the ingredients from the farmers to g...Show More

Cookbooks of 2015

28:19 | Dec 1st, 2015

Sheila Dillon and guests reflect on a year of cookery and food books. Sheila is joined in the studio by Bee Wilson, historian and food writer who's about to publish First Bite: How We Learn to Eat, journalist and food writer Alex Renton, and Feature...Show More


28:08 | Nov 23rd, 2015

Nearly every major city in the world has one- a district where Chinese immigrants have settled to live, work and eat. This week Dan Saladino takes you on a tour of Chinatowns around the world. From one of the oldest, in Manila, to one of the newest...Show More

Scotch Egg! Scotch Egg!

28:15 | Nov 15th, 2015

Scotch eggs may conjure memories of Summer picnics, school dinners or even Alan Partridge but the humble bar snack has been elevated to a culinary canvas on which chefs can make their own mark and feature on the menus of some of the UK's top restaura...Show More

Trish Deseine Goes Home

28:12 | Nov 8th, 2015

Trish Deseine may not be a household name in the UK. But in France, the home of gastronomy, her 12 cookbooks, all written in French, have sold hundreds and thousands of copies, and influenced a generation of chefs, food writers and home cooks. She ha...Show More

The Pear

28:28 | Oct 25th, 2015

For many of us, a disappointing experience with an unripe or tasteless pear has coloured our opinion of what was once thought of as a superior fruit: "gold to the apple's silver". Sheila Dillon travels to Kent to meet Dr Joan Morgan, who is just pub...Show More

A Milk Appreciation

28:18 | Oct 18th, 2015

When was the last time you drank a simple glass of milk? Perhaps you view it more as an ingredient for cooking or to splash in your tea rather than a product of beauty with its own strengths and qualities? When the retailers slashed milk prices to lu...Show More

How Did the Chicken Cross the World?

27:39 | Oct 12th, 2015

As a race, we humans owe a fair amount to the chicken. Throughout time it has been a religious deity, a medicine source as well as being a food. It's travelled the world alongside explorers, inspired scientific revelations and of course been the nub ...Show More


28:16 | Oct 5th, 2015

Dan Saladino hunts down that flavour we call 'bitter', and asks if bitterness is disappearing from our food and drink - and why this matters. Bitter tastes are found all over the planet; wild leaves, fruits, vegetables and more. Bitterness is also c...Show More

Food Stories from Syria 1

27:45 | Sep 27th, 2015

The continuing conflict in Syria has caused millions of people to flee the country. Images of men, women and children living in camps, walking vast distances and even risking perilous journeys by boat or stowed away on trucks have been shown around t...Show More

The Ark of Taste: The Story so Far

24:07 | Sep 23rd, 2015

This is a race against time. Earlier this year The Food Programme set out to record stories of foods around the world facing extinction, a project that has provided dramatic accounts from the depths of Anatolian caves to the heights of Indonesian rai...Show More

Jam Tomorrow... Today

27:58 | Sep 15th, 2015

Jam. Think sticky apricot and saccharine strawberry? Think again. Our British love affair with jam goes back to the sweet-toothed 17th century. But now our interest seems to be waning. Shop sales of jam are down amid concerns over the amount of sugar...Show More

Libera Terra: Sicily's Anti-Mafia Farms

27:26 | Sep 7th, 2015

Dan Saladino finds out how farms confiscated from Sicily's mafia are providing food and wine, helping to fight crime and providing a future for a new generation on the island. The project, a not for profit farming operation called "Libera Terra" (wh...Show More

My Food Hero: Ella McSweeney Meets Wendell Berry

27:28 | Sep 1st, 2015

Wendell Berry has been described as 'An American Hero' but his work and teaching have inspired and influenced leaders, writers and campaigners around the world. Ella McSweeney had no hesitation in choosing him as her 'Food Hero' and travels to meet h...Show More

My Food Hero: Dan Saladino meets Mary Taylor-Simeti

28:02 | Sep 1st, 2015

Dan Saladino retraces his Sicilian food roots and goes in search of a great expert on the island's cuisine, Mary Taylor Simeti. She left America in the early 1960's and has now lived in Sicily for 50 years. Sicily has one of the oldest, continuous, ...Show More

My Food Hero: Sheila Dillon meets writer and campaigner Susan George

28:06 | Aug 17th, 2015

In the second of a special series of food heroes, Sheila Dillon meets one of the most influential writers on international hunger and social justice in recent times. Susan George published her first book 'How the Other Half Dies: The Real Reasons f...Show More

My Food Hero: Tim Hayward meets Len Deighton

28:00 | Aug 11th, 2015

Tim Hayward meets the man who changed the whole way he approached food. Someone who inspired Tim, and many others, to look at food and the techniques of cooking in a completely new way. A surprising food figure perhaps, he is a best-selling author, ...Show More

Going Pop

28:00 | Aug 3rd, 2015

Staying sober on a night out can be a limiting experience with the soft drinks choice on offer in many places. But with an increasing number of 16-24 year olds staying teetotal, demand is increasing for more interesting, varied and healthier choices....Show More

Bread for Scotland

28:08 | Jul 27th, 2015

Scotland has a problem with food. For all the salmon, whisky and summer berries celebrated in this year of Scottish Food & Drink, the Government says its spending billions fighting an obesity crisis, and when it comes to groceries, the supermarket is...Show More

Fast Food Workers

28:21 | Jul 20th, 2015

With a new "living wage" announced Sheila Dillon explores the world of fast food workers. In the U.S. a campaign over low pay, started in 2012, has now gone global. Saying they could no longer live on the Federal minimum wage of $7.25 the workers cal...Show More

New Wine Generation

28:04 | Jul 13th, 2015

There's a revolution happening in the world of wine. While tradition once dictated the way things were done, a new generation of wine drinkers are shaking things up - in the way it's sold, consumed and written about - with the intention of shaking of...Show More

Feeding the Commons - Part II: Lunch to Lights Out

27:52 | Jul 6th, 2015

Following the food operation at the centre of British politics. Lunch to Lights out The Food Programme team go behind the scenes of one of the most historic food operations in the world. In the second part of this edition, we hear how dining in Par...Show More

Feeding the Commons - Part I: Breakfast to Brunch

28:13 | Jun 29th, 2015

Following the food operation at the centre of British politics. Breakfast to Brunch. The Food Programme team go behind the scenes of one of the most historic food operations in the world. In the first part of this edition, we discover the incredible...Show More

Fantastic Fiction and Fabulous Feasts

28:20 | Jun 22nd, 2015

Close your eyes and think for a moment about the books you read as a child and those that talked about food. A vivid description of a flavour can spark the imagination and the taste buds but a secret midnight feast at Malory Towers, the elaborate Hog...Show More

Simon Hopkinson: A Life Through Food - Part 2

28:14 | Jun 15th, 2015

Cook and writer Simon Hopkinson was at the height of his powers in the kitchen of Bibendum in London in the early 1990s, but he'd walk away from professional cooking to focus on his food writing. In the second part of this interview with Sheila Dill...Show More

Simon Hopkinson: A Life Through Food - Part 1

24:05 | Jun 15th, 2015

Cook and food writer Simon Hopkinson shares his culinary life story with Sheila Dillon. In a food career spanning four decades he's been an influential chef, television cook and author of the "most useful cookbook of all time". In this first of two ...Show More


28:23 | Jun 11th, 2015

From the 'slow and low' tradition of the American south to the village of Llantwit Major in South Wales, Dan Saladino explores the revival of one of the food world's most misunderstood words; barbecue. A world away from the burnt burgers and charre...Show More

Rick Stein - A Life Through Food (Part 2)

49:41 | Jun 8th, 2015

In this second part of a two-programme special, Rick Stein continues in conversation with Sheila Dillon talking about how he was discovered for TV by Keith Floyd's Director, David Pritchard thirty years ago. Despite being naturally introverted his st...Show More

Salt, Pepper... and Seaweed?

28:11 | May 26th, 2015

Highly regarded for its health benefits, people living by the shore have been eating seaweed for millennia. In Ireland, it was part of a prehistoric diet, and taken to ward off illness. In New Zealand, seaweed was a Maori delicacy. In Iceland, it was...Show More

The Spice Explosion

28:20 | May 17th, 2015

This is more than a story about chicken tikka masala. The UK's palette is changing with a demand for far more spice and pizzazz in our menus and larders. The UK currently imports almost double what it did in the year 2000. Much of that demand has bee...Show More

Jane Grigson - A Tribute: Part One

52:01 | May 11th, 2015

Jane Grigson was a unique and pioneering voice in food writing; a self-taught cook whose books and journalism changed British food culture. Twenty-five years after her death, Sheila Dillon is joined by three special guests to explore her life, food a...Show More

The Legacy of the BBC Food and Farming Awards

24:11 | May 4th, 2015

Sheila Dillon reports on how 15 years of the BBC Food and Farming Awards have captured the revolution in the streetfood business, witnessed the rise of a new generation of brewers and distillers, chronicled the rise of new types of food markets and m...Show More

Diet and Diabetes

28:12 | May 4th, 2015

In the UK, there are 3.2 million people who are living with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and a further 600,000 who have Type 2 but just don't know it yet. And those numbers continue to rise. In the first few months of this year, the charity Diabetes U...Show More

School Dinners - A Progress Report

28:23 | Apr 20th, 2015

Ten years on from 'Jamie's School Dinners', Sheila Dillon is joined by children's food campaigner and former dinner lady Jeanette Orrey and Co-Author of the School Food Plan, Henry Dimbleby to look at the state of school food and discuss how new inte...Show More

The Ark of Taste

28:16 | Apr 14th, 2015

Dan Saladino meets the people working to save foods and flavours at risk of extinction. A global project called the Ark of Taste is now attempting to catalogue traditional ingredients in more than 100 countries. It was started in the 1990s when a g...Show More

The Joy of Eggs

28:03 | Apr 5th, 2015

We were once told 'Go to work on an egg' but health warnings later saw us cut the number we eat. As the US Dietary Advisory Committee drops its advice on restricting egg consumption Sheila Dillon asks if we're falling back in love with the egg. Simil...Show More

Sweet Britain

27:34 | Mar 29th, 2015

The nutritional debate over sugar doesn't seem to be putting off a new generation of sweet makers in this country. Sweets sales seem stable, and new treats are being created and exported all over the world. Sheila speaks to sweet makers Freya Sykes ...Show More

Food Waste Pioneers

28:04 | Mar 22nd, 2015

Dan Saladino hears three stories of how three very different individuals are reimagining food waste - solving problems, discovering flavours, and changing lives. Chido Govera grew up in rural Zimbabwe, and was orphaned aged seven. She suffered abuse...Show More

BBC Food and Farming Awards 2015: The Finalists

27:54 | Mar 15th, 2015

In a special edition Sheila Dillon reveals the finalists for this year's BBC Food and Farming Awards.At the beginning of the year Radio 4 listeners were asked to nominate their favourite producers, farmers and retailers. The response was huge, and fr...Show More

Reconsider the Oyster!

27:45 | Mar 10th, 2015

Oysters are receiving renewed attention around the world, with new ideas for producing more, and eating more. Dan Saladino finds out what's driving this oyster enthusiasm. As Drew Smith, author of Oyster: A World History explains, "the oyster is old...Show More

The 'Clean Label' Question

27:58 | Mar 1st, 2015

For over a decade consumers have become finely attuned to E-numbers, flavourings, colourings and additives in our food. Food manufacturers have changed the way they do things in pursuit of 'clean label' - a more natural sounding ingredients list. But...Show More

The Clink - Revisited

27:31 | Feb 22nd, 2015

Sheila goes behind bars to visit the most popular restaurant in Cardiff, The Clink, which is run by prisoners. Ten years ago Al Crisci was a winner at the BBC Food and Farming Awards for his work at High Down prison. At the ceremony he announced th...Show More

The Secret Formula

28:04 | Feb 20th, 2015

With one of the lowest breastfeeding rates in Europe, many parents in the UK feed their babies formula milk. But what's actually in it? Sheila Dillon discovers why it's an industry steeped in science and secrecy as well as controversy. Journalist...Show More

Soup and the British

28:06 | Feb 15th, 2015

From a hearty warming bowl of chunky soup on a frosty Winter's day to the smooth comfort of home-made chicken soup when you're ill, the British, it seems, love soup. We spend £762million a year and the market's growing with trendy exotic flavours spi...Show More

How Britain fell in love with the microwave

27:44 | Feb 9th, 2015

In a recent survey, the microwave was voted the kitchen gadget that people couldn't live without. 83% of all households in the UK have a microwave, yet many say they only use this hi tech device for re heating food. Sheila Dillon discovers how influe...Show More

Christmas, food and being far from home

27:51 | Feb 2nd, 2015

As we prepare to tuck into our festive family meal, Sheila Dillon uncovers the food stories of those who won't be home for Christmas with the help of food writer Joe Warwick.

The Grain Divide

27:59 | Feb 1st, 2015

Wheat has, since the dawn of agriculture, been especially treasured amongst all of the food crops, and is now the most widely cultivated food plant on the planet. However, the relationship between humans and wheat has changed a great deal in recent t...Show More

The Future of Food Markets

27:35 | Jan 18th, 2015

Food markets have been the heart of our towns and cities for thousands of years. Now, with financial pressure on local authorities, and growing competition from a supermarkets price war, Sheila Dillon and guests discuss what a market needs to survive...Show More

2015 Food and Farming Awards Launch

27:51 | Jan 11th, 2015

Sheila Dillon unveils a new team of judges for the 2015 BBC Food and Farming Awards, including Giorgio Locatelli, Diana Henry and Cyrus Todiwala. Sheila catches up with previous nominees and winners, looks ahead to the big food stories of the coming...Show More

Your food science questions for Harold McGee

25:01 | Jan 4th, 2015

Sheila Dillon is joined by Harold McGee to answer your food science questions. Harold McGee is fascinated by what we are actually doing to our food when we prepare and cook it. His research and writing have inspired many chefs, including Heston Blum...Show More

Redemption through Food

27:28 | Dec 28th, 2014

Redemption through food. Sheila Dillon brings you her selection of inspirational stories from The Food Programme in 2014. Ken Hom tells Sheila how food changed his life and his fortunes. Claudia Roden explains how food brought the Egyptian diaspora ...Show More

Feeding Britain

27:37 | Dec 14th, 2014

Feeding Britain - The story of one shop in South Yorkshire which is changing the way we think about food waste and food poverty. A year ago the Community Shop opened in Goldthorpe. It takes food which would otherwise have gone to landfill and sells i...Show More

Cookbooks of 2014

27:59 | Dec 7th, 2014

A review of cookbooks and food writing of 2014. Sheila Dillon is joined to discuss the year in books by Allan Jenkins, editor of Observer Food Monthly, investigative journalist Joanna Blythman and blogger Alex Ryder aka Gingey Bites. Sheila also hea...Show More

A Bronx Food Tale

27:54 | Nov 30th, 2014

New York's south Bronx is still one of the city's most deprived areas; low incomes, unemployment and health problems abound. In the 1970's it captured headlines for a "burn for hate" policy that appeared to have taken hold; abandoned (and sometimes o...Show More

Get Ahead Treats for Christmas

27:55 | Nov 24th, 2014

Sheila Dillon invites Diana Henry to provide a guide to an Eastern Christmas. With experts Bee Wilson and Sally Butcher on hand, Diana looks at 'get ahead' treats, and finds out why certain foods from the east feature so prominently at Christmas. Th...Show More

Terra Madre

27:52 | Nov 16th, 2014

Food stories from across the world. Dan Saladino travels to Terra Madre 2014 in Turin. It is a global movement of farmers and food producers which attracts the attention of world leaders - from Michelle Obama to Pope Francis. Last month, 250,000 peo...Show More


28:20 | Nov 10th, 2014

From the king oyster to the not-so-humble button, Dan Saladino discovers a world of mushrooms, grown for food - and follows the spores to reveal the secrets of mycelium, hunts for the perfect mushroom sandwich, and finds that there is one species in ...Show More

Tom Jaine

27:17 | Nov 2nd, 2014

Sheila Dillon talks to the publisher, writer and restaurateur Tom Jaine about his life. From his early days at 'The Hole in the Wall' in Bath to custody of his beloved 'Prospect Books' ("every book a brick in the wall of knowledge") and beyond. With ...Show More

Women in the Kitchen

23:51 | Oct 26th, 2014

Sheila Dillon looks at the state of play for female chefs in the professional kitchen. She talks to Alice Waters, Sally Clarke, Margot Henderson and Mary-Ellen McTague. We also hear from Joyce Molyneux, who was one of the female exceptions in the pro...Show More

A Life through Food: Harold McGee

27:35 | Oct 21st, 2014

Harold McGee, the man who helped explain the science of the kitchen, tells his food story. His book, published in 1984, On Food and Cooking, has influenced home cooks as well as a new generation of experimental chefs. It's seen as an important book ...Show More

In a Stew about Rabbits

27:55 | Oct 19th, 2014

Sheila Dillon discovers the delights of eating rabbit meat, but also why some people think it is unjustifiable. Dil Peeling from Compassion in World Farming gives details on their latest report into conditions on rabbit farms on the continent. We he...Show More

Mouthwatering Mutton

27:48 | Oct 5th, 2014

Mutton tastier than lamb - why we should all demand to eat older meat. Dan Saladino uncovers the mystery of why we no longer eat mutton, despite it being a favoured meat of the Victorians. He hears about the efforts of Bob Kennard, author of a new bo...Show More

Bees and the City - the Urban Honey Story

26:59 | Sep 28th, 2014

As bee populations fall, Sheila Dillon asks if some salvation may be found in the mean streets of our cities. With a report from New York where bee keeping was actually illegal for a long time but where the honey festival now thrives. In London a you...Show More

Food Is MAD

23:59 | Sep 22nd, 2014

From a lesson in "guerrilla gardening" by LA's Ron Finley to Mastering the Art of Soviet cooking with food writer Anya Von Bremzen, Dan Saladino reports from an annual food symposium held in Copenhagen, called MAD (the word for food in Danish). Now ...Show More

Ethiopian Teff - An Ancient Grain

26:56 | Sep 16th, 2014

Teff has been grown in Ethiopia for Millennia. Traditionally, it's ground, milled, mixed with water and fermented for days to make the sour staple flatbread injera. Cultivation of this mysterious and tiny grain has been concentrated in Ethiopia for ...Show More

A Taste of Britain Revisited - Yorkshire

27:14 | Sep 7th, 2014

Dan Saladino revisits Yorkshire food traditions which were captured on film in 1974 by Derek Cooper, previous presenter of The Food Programme. From Yorkshire puddings to tripe, Dan discovers how the food from this region was formed by the Industrial ...Show More

A Taste of Britain Revisited - Wales

27:01 | Aug 31st, 2014

In 1974, Derek Cooper set off on a hunt - for BBC Television - around Britain to discover what was left of its regional foods and traditional ingredients. Forty years on, Dan Saladino revisits Wales, and that series, called "A Taste of Britain" - to ...Show More

A Taste of Britain Revisited - Dorset

28:04 | Aug 26th, 2014

In 1974, Derek Cooper set off on a hunt - for BBC Television - around Britain to discover what was left of its regional foods and traditional ingredients. Forty years on, Dan Saladino revisits that series, called "A Taste of Britain" - to meet some o...Show More

Eat for Victory

23:41 | Aug 17th, 2014

Eat for Victory - Sheila Dillon meets the people who are using the techniques of WWII rationing to improve their diet today. Clare Millar likes to dress as a land girl, and eat like one too. She isn't interested in eating Woolton Pie but she finds th...Show More

Growing Veg, Not Drugs

27:49 | Aug 10th, 2014

Growing salad leaves is changing the lives of former drug addicts in Bristol. Sheila Dillon visits The Severn Project run by Steve Glover. Steve employs ex addicts and other people who find it hard to get jobs. And he's turned it into a profitable bu...Show More

Problems with Poultry?

27:58 | Aug 4th, 2014

Is the poultry industry fit for purpose? As our consumption of chicken increases and UK poultry production intensifies, Dan Saladino looks at the modern poultry industry. Two recent events have brought the production of chicken into sharp focus. The...Show More

English Wine

27:44 | Jul 27th, 2014

English and Welsh wines are on the up and up, as Sheila Dillon investigates. Wine production is well known as a risky investment, not least because it is so dependent on the weather. Many UK growers were hit very hard by the terrible summer of 2012....Show More

Salad leaves

27:39 | Jul 20th, 2014

It's boom time in the world of lettuce and salad leaves. More leafy greens were sold in the UK last year than ever before, and that upward trend looks set to continue - driven in particular by bags and bowls of pre-prepared leaves. In this edition of...Show More

Food in Opera

27:58 | Jul 13th, 2014

Food in Opera. Sheila Dillon hears the story of food told through 400 years of music history. Gluttonous composers, cuisine centred plotlines and singers needing nourishment. Renowned opera critic and gourmet traveller, Fred Plotkin holds an event a...Show More

Food and the Curriculum

27:36 | Jul 6th, 2014

Stefan Gates talks to teachers, kids and cooks about food and the curriculum, ahead of the changes that come into force from September. Stefan asks how well prepared schools and teachers are, what students think of it all and whether the changes will...Show More

Mexican cooking and the food adventures of Diana Kennedy

28:05 | Jun 30th, 2014

Dan Saladino meets the world authority on the food of Mexico, the British born writer Diana Kennedy. Diana Kennedy's life reads like an adventure story. Born in Loughton, Essex in 1923, after serving in the land army she set off on a journey that wo...Show More

Sweeteners: The answer to our sugar cravings?

27:36 | Jun 22nd, 2014

Sheila Dillon asks whether sweeteners could be the way for us to cut down sugar but to keep enjoying sweet treats. Presented by Sheila Dillon and produced in Bristol by Emma Weatherill.

US Southern Cooking and Chef Sean Brock

28:00 | Jun 15th, 2014

Richard Johnson is in South Carolina to meet Charleston chef, Sean Brock, who is on a mission to revive ingredients and flavours not experienced for hundreds of years. It's a story that involves an intricate "food tattoo", one of America's biggest ...Show More

Holy Food

27:53 | Jun 8th, 2014

Tim Hayward looks at the tradition of monastic food production, with stories from Sicily, New York as well as from closer to home. Ever since the 6th century rule of St Benedict said that monastic orders should be self- sufficient, monks and nuns ha...Show More


28:11 | Jun 1st, 2014

Sheila Dillon takes a look at that most coveted of kitchen tools; the knife. One of the most primal yet treasured implements, any chef worth their salt knows that you don't mess with another chef's knife. Sheila talks to chef Henry Harris from Racin...Show More

Wild Booze

24:07 | May 25th, 2014

Writer and forager Andy Hamilton leads a journey hunting for plants to make incredible drinks, and looks again at the wild world all around us.

Fish Farming

27:26 | May 19th, 2014

Fields of Fish - The huge rise in farmed fish and the people trying to make it sustainable. The world is now producing more farmed fish than farmed beef. Sheila Dillon discovers how fish farming works and hears concerns about its impact on the enviro...Show More

Ken Hom 2 (of 2) - Politics, influence and the future

27:47 | May 12th, 2014

In this second of two special editions recorded at the Bristol Food Connections Festival, Sheila Dillon talks to Ken Hom about his extraordinary life through food. Today they focus on what Ken has been doing since his early BBC career and about how h...Show More

Ken Hom 1 (of 2) - The Early Years

23:56 | May 11th, 2014

Over 2 special programmes from the Food Connections festival in Bristol, Sheila Dillon talks to Ken Hom about his extraordinary life through food. Part 1: 1 His upbringing and early career. It's hard to believe that it was nearly 30 years ago when K...Show More

Behind the Scenes at BBC Food and Farming Awards 2014

23:46 | May 4th, 2014

The first of two-part special on the prestigious BBC Food and Farming Awards - now in its 14th year on Radio 4 and being hosted in Bristol for the first time. The awards celebrate individuals, businesses and organisations across the UK who produce qu...Show More

Plantains and pleasure; Jamaican food in the UK

27:46 | Apr 27th, 2014

Tim Hayward on the evolution of Jamaican food in the UK with chefs and cooks in Bristol.

A Tribute to Derek Cooper

27:39 | Apr 22nd, 2014

Sheila Dillon pays tribute to the late Derek Cooper who started The Food Programme back in 1979 and changed the face of food broadcasting and journalism.

Food in Northern Ireland: A Golden Era?

28:18 | Apr 13th, 2014

Sheila Dillon meets Northern Ireland's chefs and producers leading a food renaissance.

Raw Milk

27:22 | Apr 6th, 2014

With a Food Standards Agency consultation underway, Sheila Dillon and guests discuss the controversial subject of raw milk. Banned in Scotland in 1983, the current system in England allows raw unpasteurised milk to be sold directly from the farmer. R...Show More

Wild Beer

28:00 | Mar 30th, 2014

Dan Saladino meets the brewers transforming the flavours and styles of the British craft beer scene. From experiments with seaweed to efforts to find lost Victorian recipes, it's a diverse and fast moving world, so where are the new ideas for beer co...Show More


27:48 | Mar 23rd, 2014

The rise and rise of the micro-bakery. How home baked bread became a business opportunity.

Hospital Food

28:01 | Mar 16th, 2014

Sheila Dillon investigates the government's latest plans to improve food in the NHS. The government is introducing a new incentive to encourage hospitals to invest in food. Will this succeed where other initiatives fail? Presented by Sheila Dillon a...Show More

BBC Food & Farming Awards: Meet the Finalists

27:23 | Mar 10th, 2014

A special edition introducing the producers, farmers and cooks who have made it through to the final stage of 2014's BBC Food & Farming Awards, featuring judges Charles Campion and Richard Corrigan. At the beginning of the year thousands of Radio 4 ...Show More

A Renaissance for Butchers?

27:52 | Mar 2nd, 2014

Sheila Dillon examines the state of the Butchery profession to find out how it has weathered the storm since the horsemeat scandal. She asks how our consumption habits have affected demand, and whether the profession of Butchery is still a promising ...Show More

The Future of Fairtrade

27:53 | Feb 23rd, 2014

Matthew Hill reports on the future of Fairtrade as the label marks its 20th anniversary. Some are arguing that a new initiative is weakening the foundation's founding vision. Produced in Bristol by Emma Weatherill.

Really Wild Food

27:41 | Feb 16th, 2014

Sheila Dillon interviews the team behind the BBC's Natural History Unit to uncover the strangest collection of food stories from around the world. From weird, wonderful and disgusting tales of eating krill burgers in the Antarctic, to drinking goat's...Show More

Claudia Roden: A Life Through Food

28:00 | Feb 9th, 2014

In 1968 Claudia Roden published her first book, 'A Book of Middle Eastern Food', and with it introduced many people to an unfamiliar food culture. When she arrived in Britain in the fifties, foods like hummus and pitta were nearly unheard of, and "t...Show More

Britain and the Ready Meal

27:47 | Feb 4th, 2014

Ready meals divide Britain, some love them, others think they're a problem for our health and wellbeing and a major culprit in de-skilling us in the kitchen. In the last four decades we've helped lead the way in the ready meal's innovation and in its...Show More

Greek Yogurt: a global love affair

27:25 | Jan 26th, 2014

In the Great Taste Awards last year, a yogurt from a small British dairy beat over 10,000 competitors to win the Supreme Champion title. This surprised many, not least because it was a simple, plain, 'Greek-style' yogurt. This type of fermented milk...Show More

Food and the Future of Pubs

27:56 | Jan 19th, 2014

Sheila Dillon hears the latest on the role of food in the future of the British pub. From traditional Asian curries to the influence of Michelin starred chefs. Producer: Perminder Khatkar.

Three inspirational cooks

27:57 | Jan 12th, 2014

Sheila Dillon revisits the inspirational caterers from the very first BBC Food & Farming Awards. They share stories of cooking for people with cancer, HIV and mental illness. Sheila finds out how the work has changed in the last decade and a half. I...Show More

The best of British food and farming.... the search begins

24:13 | Jan 5th, 2014

Sheila Dillon, chef Richard Corrigan and food writer and broadcaster Valentine Warner help launch the 2014 BBC Food & Farming Awards. From the UK's Best Food market to the Best Drinks Producer, The Food Programme explains how to get involved and no...Show More

Fish & Chips

27:05 | Jan 3rd, 2014

Sheila Dillon explores a renaissance in the great British fish and chip shop, with the help of food blogger Daniel Young. At Upton Chippy near Gainsborough in Lincolnshire, not much has changed since the first fry there in 1948. The fish comes fresh...Show More

100 years of Elizabeth David

27:16 | Dec 29th, 2013

Sheila Dillon and Tim Hayward discuss the legacy of Elizabeth David 100 years after her birth. The iconic food writer is credited for bringing Mediterranean cooking to post-war Britain. Sir Terence Conran speaks about Elizabeth David's influence on ...Show More

Nutmeg: The Smell of Christmas?

26:50 | Dec 22nd, 2013

For cook and author Nigel Slater, 'Nutmeg and citrus are the scents of Christmas' but Sheila Dillon needs convincing. Together they look at the versatility of nutmeg as a spice that can bring life to mulled wine, egg custards, meats and puddings. P...Show More


28:19 | Dec 8th, 2013

Cambridge University historian Lesley Steinitz explains the pioneering story of Bovril. From its beginnings at the end of the 19th Century there are many parallels between Bovril then and our food production today. Robert Opie takes Sheila round the...Show More

Alice Waters, a Delicious Revolution

27:52 | Dec 1st, 2013

The Californian chef and campaigner Alice Waters shares her story with Sheila Dillon; from early life in the 1960's counter-culture to influencing the food thinking of Presidents. Alice Waters founded the restaurant Chez Panisse in Berkeley in 1971....Show More

Cook Books

27:56 | Nov 27th, 2013

Cookery Books of 2013. Ahead of the Christmas shopping season Sheila Dillon reviews this year's best cook books. Sheila is joined by comedian Stephen K Amos and food writers Catherine Phipps and Fiona Beckett. Presented by Sheila Dillon and produce...Show More

Why is Grimsby's smoked fish special?

27:34 | Nov 18th, 2013

Fenland celery has recently joined a select list of only fifty-five British foods to achieve the same EU protection as champagne, stilton and Melton Mowbray pork pies. But what difference will this status realistically make to the people who grow i...Show More

The Sugarman of Brazil

23:58 | Nov 10th, 2013

Leontino Balbo - The Sugarman of Brazil. The incredible story of one maverick farmer who is trying to change the way we produce our food. David Baker brings us a story from Sao Paulo about a man who is managing to produce sugar whilst also helping w...Show More

Horsemeat - a Food Programme update

27:41 | Nov 5th, 2013

In January of this year the Food Standards Agency confirmed results showing horsemeat had been found in supermarket burgers. Over the next few days and weeks, more DNA testing would reveal more beef products contained horsemeat. Ten months on there ...Show More

Restaurant Reviews

28:06 | Oct 28th, 2013

Restaurant reviews - who can we trust? Sheila Dillon investigates online review sites, newspaper reviews and guidelines to try and discover the impartiality of different criticism. She is aided by reviewer and editor Joe Warwick and previous restaura...Show More

Cider: Britain's Most Misunderstood Drink?

27:35 | Oct 21st, 2013

Award winning drinks writer Pete Brown joins Sheila Dillon to explain why bottles of cider should be the drink of choice on the UK's dinner tables. A cider revival has been building for a number of years, many credit the "over-ice" advertising campa...Show More

The Great British Hop

24:01 | Oct 13th, 2013

Three decades ago Miles Warde worked on a hop farm in Herefordshire. Split shifts, tractors with lights, and when you weren't sleeping you'd be in the pub. Today that farm is now a vineyard, so the presenter began wondering what had happened to the g...Show More

Cook Slow, Cook Fast

28:06 | Oct 7th, 2013

Sheila Dillon meets a new generation of cooks using slow and pressure cookers. Sales of slow cookers and pressure cookers have increased over the past couple of years. Sheila visits Catherine Phipps to discover exciting dishes which can be made in a ...Show More

The School Food Plan

28:02 | Sep 30th, 2013

The School Food Plan, written by Henry Dimbleby and John Vincent, aims to increase take-up of school meals, improve the quality of food served and tackle student hunger and the early causes of health problems. Released in July, it contains sixteen ...Show More

A Quiet Food Revolution: The Story of Myrtle and Darina Allen

24:05 | Sep 22nd, 2013

Myrtle and Darina Allen, revolutionised food in Ireland with their cooking. From pioneering restaurants to groundbreaking farmers' markets, Dan Saladino tells the story of food and Ballymaloe. In 1964 Myrtle Allen, a mother and farmers' wife turned ...Show More

Booze-free Bars

23:58 | Sep 16th, 2013

Booze Free Bars - With an increasing number of us giving up alcohol, new bars are popping up across the country to provide an alternative to pub drinking.

The Future of Street Food

27:05 | Sep 8th, 2013

Can street food change the world? Richard Johnson looks at ideas being tried around the world, from food carts setting up in "food deserts" to night time food markets being set up to transform city life. Producer: Dan Saladino.

DIY Food

28:03 | Sep 2nd, 2013

DIY Foods - Tim Hayward meets the people taking ambitious food production into their own hands. Andy Mahoney makes his own cheese in the spare room of his house in South London. Hannes Viljoen makes his own biltong to give the taste of his native Sou...Show More

In Praise of Bacon

27:50 | Aug 25th, 2013

An Ode To The Bacon Butty. Hardeep Singh Kohli's personal plea to the nation to reflect on a food of wonder: bacon. Hardeep goes on a roadtrip around Scotland meeting bacon eaters, makers, regalers and producers. Producer: Emma Weatherill.

Feeding the Detectives

28:01 | Aug 18th, 2013

Dan Saladino looks at how food has increasingly become a big ingredient in crime fiction.

A World Stage for Food and Music

28:07 | Aug 11th, 2013

Every year at the WOMAD festival, one tent in a field in Wiltshire becomes the venue for a remarkable meeting of food and music. Solo artists and bands from all over the world gather to share recipes and stories with the audience, who get to taste di...Show More

The Banana - fascinating history, uncertain future

28:05 | Aug 5th, 2013

Sheila Dillon asks why the future of the UK's most popular fruit, the banana, is uncertain. Producer: Emma Weatherill.

Skint Foodies

27:43 | Jul 28th, 2013

Sheila Dillon meets the cooks specialising in great food on small budgets, part of a world of food blogging influenced by life of benefits, periods of homelessness and shopping budgets that can be as little as ten pounds a week. One of the highest p...Show More

Rethinking Veganism

27:54 | Jul 21st, 2013

The word 'vegan' has for the nearly seventy years of its existence - represented a diet and a way of eating that has not captured hearts - or stomachs - beyond a small, dedicated group of people calling themselves vegan. In this edition of The Food ...Show More

Valentine Warner and Magnus Nilsson's Food Exchange, Part 2

27:32 | Jul 14th, 2013

In part two of their exchange of food stories Magnus Nilsson invites Valentine Warner to venture into the lakes of Sweden's Jamtland in search of wild trout. In the summer the sun remains in the sky and so at midnight they head into the forests of n...Show More

Valentine Warner and Magnus Nilsson's Food Exchange

27:51 | Jul 7th, 2013

In a two part special Valentine Warner and Swedish chef Magnus Nilsson swap food stories from their own very different food cultures. Magnus Nilsson comes from the hunting culture of northern Sweden, a region called Jamtland. The long, harsh winters...Show More

Butter, a delicious story of decline and revival

27:47 | Jun 30th, 2013

Sheila Dillon meets a new generation of producers making butter special again.

Food, game changers and career movers

28:02 | Jun 23rd, 2013

Sheila Dillon looks at the award winners who are leaving high flying careers to follow their passions and dreams in food production Producer: Maggie Ayre.

The chocolate world of Mott Green

28:14 | Jun 16th, 2013

The story of Mott Green, cocoa farmer and chocolate maker, who was changing the industry one bar at a time. Born in New York, this gifted engineer and mathematician left Manhattan in his twenties to explore the Caribbean. He ended up in Grenada, fel...Show More

Bereavement and Food

28:04 | Jun 9th, 2013

In the throes of bereavement food can seem unimportant. People lose both their appetite and their sense of taste. But food and cooking can also play a positive and healing role in helping individuals come to term with their loss. Sheila Dillon explor...Show More

Michael Pollan: Why Cooking Matters

27:19 | Jun 4th, 2013

Sheila Dillon speaks to the writer Michael Pollan on the craft, science and pleasures of cooking. In his new book, Cooked, "a love letter to cooking", Pollan who is one of the world's most popular thinkers on food reflects on the value of being a c...Show More

Sugar: Pure, White and Deadly?

27:45 | May 28th, 2013

Sheila Dillon finds out why the debate about the role of sugar in our lives is hotting up. Recent books and news stories have re-awoken a forty year debate about what makes us fat. Robert H. Lustig is a paediatric endocrinologist at the University o...Show More

Food, Cancer and Well-Being

27:44 | May 19th, 2013

Sheila Dillon asks if food and nutrition should have a bigger role in treating cancer. Is the medical profession too reluctant to see food as an essential component in improving the well-being of cancer patients Producer: Maggie Ayre.

A Life Through Wine: Jancis Robinson

28:09 | May 16th, 2013

Jancis Robinson remembers the specific bottle of wine which ignited her passion for both drinking wine and writing about it. She began reviewing for the University paper 40 years ago and has grown to become a world renowned author and critic on the s...Show More