Scotland toasts Milan Expo with gala dinner

With the Italian ambassador

Scotland got a true taste of Italy on 27 February when First Minister Nicola Sturgeon joined the Italian ambassador to the UK to welcome guests to a special gala dinner to showcase the World Expo 2015.

A spokesperson for Sturgeon said: “Expo Milano 2015 is designed to spark a global conversation towards finding a balance between the availability and the consumption of resources and will encourage the exchange of ideas and shared solutions from participating countries on how to collectively reach a sustainable future.

“As well as looking at the resourcing of food and the planet, Expo Milano 2015 will also explore history and the paradox of food in today’s world, where people face different extremes in available nutrition, as well as the future of food.”

The gala dinner coincided with the two-year anniversary of Scotland attaining its status as a Fairtrade Nation – one of the first in the world.

The event, with support from the Scottish government, aimed to raise awareness of the Milan’s Expo 2015 and the importance of the topics being discussed, and to encourage industry players and those with a keen interest to visit Milan during the six-month period.

First Minister Sturgeon said: “Scotland has a strong and positive relationship with Italy and it gives me great pleasure to promote the Milan Expo 2015 and to encourage companies in Scotland to recognise the opportunities it presents.

“The Milan event expects to attract over 20 million people and offers a tremendous opportunity not just for Scottish business but also to showcase our culture, heritage and unique identity. 2015 is the Year of Scottish Food and Drink and Expo Milano offers an opportunity to focus the international spotlight on Scotland once more. The theme of ‘feeding the planet, energy for life’ is a key area of global concern as we strive to live sustainably and to alleviate poverty for all.”

The event was held at the Glasgow Science Centre and included a concert featuring music from The Antonio Forcione Quintet. With food a key theme, the gala dinner was a celebration of taste illustrating the enjoyment and benefits that good food can bring.

Pasquale Terracciano, Italian ambassador to the UK, said, “It is a great honour to host this special event with the First Minister. The Milano Expo touches on key global issues that involve everyone now and in the future. Part of the Expo seeks to promote the enjoyment to be gained from truly excellent food,” and added that he was sure this was sustainably reflected at the dinner.

There were other Expo related events throughout Glasgow, including an exhibition at the Glasgow Science Centre, dedicated to Fairtrade and renewable energy.

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