Sunday, 29 April 2018

Bitter sweet: a new documentary about ancient Irish apples

I was interviewed recently by a radio documentary maker -- Patricia Baker -- who has been recording a documentary on the history of apples in Ireland. The documentary has now been completed, and it will be broadcast on Newstalk 106-108 FM (in Ireland) on Bank Holiday Monday 07 May at 7am, and repeated on Saturday 12 May at 9pm.

The documentary is entitled "Bitter sweet" and will tell the story of an important collection of native Irish apples, based at Rosemount in UCD. Patricia interviewed many people for the documentary, learning about the different routes that can be taken in investigating the role of apples in our food history. 

I met with Patricia in the National Museum of Ireland, and we conducted the interview beside the exhibit of apple remains from Hiberno-Norse (Viking) Dublin. I explained how apple remains -- usually pips and endocarp (core) fragments -- can become preserved in the archaeological record. Possible remains of apples have been found as far back as the Mesolithic period in Ireland, and they appear throughout prehistory, with cultivated examples emerging in the historic period. Listen in to the documentary to find out more.

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