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Highland Park Shows Passion For Food With Increased Investment - 22nd February, 2012

Highland Park single malt whisky, distributed by Maxxium UK, is increasing investment by 75% into brand activation around a new platform of food and gastronomy.  The brand has forged an exciting partnership with Slow Food UK, is a sponsor at this year’s prestigious The World's 50 Best Restaurants Awards and will also be implementing a significant sampling programme across some of the UK’s biggest foodie events.

With shared beliefs and values, promoting a passion for flavour and craftsmanship, Highland Park and Slow Food UK have launched a dynamic new initiative, the Slow Food Chef Alliance.  The new initiative will engage with Britain’s chefs in actively supporting Slow Food UK, by championing small scale producers and sustainably sourced, quality produce.  A number of leading names have already signed up to the scheme including Slow Food UK Chef Alliance ambassador Richard Corrigan (Corrigan’s of Mayfair), Brett Graham (Ledbury), Michael Roux Jr (Le Gavroche), Raymond Blanc (Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons) and Sam Harris (Zucca). Top regional chefs including Colin McGurran (Winteringham Fields) and Tony Singh (Oloroso) have also attended launches in Yorkshire and Scotland with more regional events being rolled out across the country.

Reinforcing the partnership with Slow Food, Highland Park will be sponsoring the Slow Food Restaurant of the Year Award at the prestigious World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards, now in its 10th year and known in the industry as the ‘foodie oscars’.  This new award, judged by Slow Food, Restaurant Magazine and Highland Park, will go to the restaurant that creates pleasurable food with a strong commitment to community and the environment.

The brand activation investment will also see a significant sampling programme take place at key events across the UK including The Great Yorkshire Show and the three day festive foodie extravaganza, Taste of Christmas.  The brand’s experiential sampling at these events will integrate the Slow Food partnership, showcasing local chefs and producers alongside Highland Park’s award winning single malt, and aims to reach over 30,000 consumers.

Peter Sandstrom, marketing director, Maxxium commented: “Highland Park’s brand strategy very much focuses on our partnership with Slow Food, which is a natural fit.  Our shared values and promoting a passion for the importance of taste and flavour has been integrated across all of our brand activation. The Slow Food Chef Alliance is going from strength to strength and we are extremely excited about our involvement with The 50 Best Restaurants of the World and this annual gathering of the world’s culinary greats.  We are also looking forward to giving consumers a fantastic food and drink experience through our UK sampling programme.”

Catherine Gazzoli, Slow Food UK CEO, commented: “ Our close relationships with leading chefs and UK consumers who are genuinely concerned with the quality and provenance of the food and drink they enjoy gives us a strong basis on which to reinforce the compatibility between Highland Park’s production values and the Slow Food ethos.

“We’re thrilled that Highland Park and its agencies have the vision to work with us on some of the most exciting and visible projects that Slow Food UK has ever undertaken.”

On a local level at home on Orkney, Highland Park has shown support by helping to establish Slow Food Orkney which was successfully launched at the distillery this week and hosted by Slow Food CEO Catherine Gazzoli.

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