Glasgow business owner up for BBC Morning Live Community Food Champion Award

The owner of Freedom Bakery is up for an award from the BBC show.
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Matt Fountain, who founded Freedom Bakery in Glasgow, is in the running for the Morning Live Community Food Champion Award, which is part of the BBC Food and Farming Awards.

Fountain founded Freedom Bakery in 2015, after experiencing how ex-offenders struggled to find work after release. He was inspired by San Patrignano community near Bologna, who work with drug addicts and help them regain their lives. His step-father spent time in jail, so he is aware of the difficulty ex-convicts have in finding permanent work. He had witnessed his step father’s lack of employment opportunities after prison which led to a cycle of re-offending, with all the knock on ramifications on the rest of the family.

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Speaking to us last year, he said: “for some, the odds have been stacked against them from the beginning, so they never had a bloody chance. An individual contacted us, who has been in institutions from childhood.

“He is completely institutionalised but he wants to get out and can imagine a life he can have that will be healthy, normal and rewarding so that is what we are about.” He set on the idea of a food business because of the emotional attachment people have with food. “I am a comfort eater, and I enjoy nice food and finding a meal or a product that is really wonderful but completely understated.”

Picture: John DevlinPicture: John Devlin
Picture: John Devlin

Matt settled on bread making, and he admits, “it was a really high minded idea. The only ideal was to make sure it was really good so it would leave a lasting impression on the person eating it, so they would understand where it came from and maybe think more positively about who made that bread.”

What are the BBC Food and Farming Awards?

Launched in 2000, to mark the 20th anniversary of Radio 4’s The Food Programme, the mission of the awards (which remains true to this day) was “to honour those who have done most to promote the cause of good food”.

Matt Fountain joins two other finalists for the award, which will be announced in the next few weeks.

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