Bob Farrand ([email protected]
1964 - Following a short early career in a high class provisioners in Dorset, entered magazine publishing in London where his time included spells on food related magazines inc Food Manufacture and Catering amongst many other titles.
1985 - Launched his own magazine publishing business and acquired Good Food Retailing magazine (now Fine Food Digest) -a trade magazine exclusively for delicatessens and fine food buyers. The magazine is the market leader and remains the Guild of Fine Food's primary communication resource. For 30 years, Bob regularly contributed 1500 word features in the magazine.
1988 - Launched the World Cheese Awards, now the largest international cheese competition in the world, annually attracting more cheeses from around the globe than any other cheese competition. The Awards travel the world having been staged in the Canary Islands, Ireland, Spain, Norway, Italy and the UK.
1989 In conjunction with 12 major cheese producers, launched the United Kingdom Cheese Guild training programme. Bob, with his wife, Linda, trained delicatessen counter staff in major supermarkets, food halls and independents for over 20 years.
1992 - Launched Good Cheese magazine - a quality annual consumer publication produced each November to coincide with the World Cheese Awards for lovers of cheese. Bob regularly wrote two or three of the main feature articles.
1994 - Launched the Guild of Fine Food to provide business support for speciality independent food stores and small, artisan food producers in the face of increasing supermarket competition. The Guild currently has over 1300 members and is the only trade association representing the interests of independent delicatessens, farm shops and small regional food producers.
1994 - Launched the Great Taste Awards, now acknowledged as the most important benchmarking scheme for high quality food and drink. 14,500 entries are blind tasted over 50 days of judging in the Guild's test kitchens in Dorset and London, in addition to specialist centres for tea, coffee and olive oil. Food and drink independently graded as faultless are awarded one-, two- or three-star Gold and Golden Fork trophies are awarded to regional winners and the Supreme Champion at the Awards Dinner.
1996- Launched the Fine Food Fair, now the Speciality & Fine Food Fair, followed two years later by the Northern Fine Food Fair, the first UK exhibitions to set speciality foods apart from mass produced lines stocked in supermarkets.
2000 - Author of The Cheese Handbook published by Hamlyn. A successful and very personal view of 80 of the world's most famous cheeses, some 20,000 copies have been sold.
2003 - Developed two further fine food training programmes - UK Charcuterie Guild and the Fortnum & Mason Academy of Fine Food.
2000 - Launched Great Taste, the annual consumer guide to Great Taste Awards winning food and drink. A quarter of a million copies are circulated to discerning consumers via a network of Great Taste Markets and other food and drink events.
Bob was for many years a regular before, during and after dinner speaker, almost exclusively on subjects relating to fine food and drink. His first love remains cheese, and it is this subject that most of his talks tend to polarise towards.
Bob finally handed over the reins of the business to his son at the beginning of 2015 although he keeps his hand in by regularly judging at food awards both in the UK and on the continent.
My first novel, The Snake that Bites its Tail was published on March 28th 2022 and all my proceeds from the sale of the book will go to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
This is a psychological murder mystery spanning 60 years tracing the life of Robin Farnham, a retired publisher who fails in his attempt at suicide following the diagnosis of Alzheimers and awakes to be told he is suspected of a cold case murder.
He is placed on a new drug trial and an enigmatic psychiatrist, Peter Lakmaker encourages Robin to write in detail about his early life. We learn of his first teenage romance, a history of gambling, the break up of his first marriage and disastrous failure of his first business. We also learn of his suspected connection with two further murders.
In parallel, we follow the life of Jane, whose abused childhood and two complicated relationships eventually lead her to Robin, and the arrival of the worryingly aggressive Krait. The climax is gripping, disturbingly believable while at the same time, unnervingly comforting.
Issues concerning outdated morality, childhood abuse, psychological disturbances and the concepts of periodicity and eternal return are cleverly interwoven into two lives destined to come together from the outset.