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Europe’s culinary culture
– united in diversity.

Idea & Development

Let us unite Europe on the basis of understanding and free will. This is the most exciting and rewarding challenge that history has ever laid before us.
Walter Scheel, 1977
Walter Scheel and Queen Elisabeth II, Brühl (1978)

Walter Scheel spent his whole life convinced of the cultural significance of culinary matters, as a statesman and politician – as President, as Foreign Minister and Vice-Chancellor, as Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development or as Chairman and, later, Honorary Chairman of the Free Democratic Party of Germany – he made full use of this power to unite.

Just like many negotiations between nations arrived at a breakthrough during a good meal, numerous alliances have been sealed by the act of eating together. Sharing a table with a guest, with a friend or a stranger, is a visible symbol of friendship.
Walter Scheel, 1991

Walter Scheel was unparalleled in his ability to combine conviviality and joie de vivre with political determination and boldness, to create confidence and overcome differences through personal contact. He was convinced that: “Food and drink bring people closer together, unite nations and create a heartfelt sense of human connectedness.”

It is in the spirit of this European “connectedness” that we remember him.

The Circle of Supporters

The non-profit circle of supporters created to promote culture and encourage understanding amongst nations – the Trägerkreis der Walter Scheel Medaille e.V. – is the independent, non-party organisational basis of the award, and its members share a commitment to freedom and to the task of European unification and an awareness of the formative significance of the intangible heritage of culinary culture: of Europe’s cuisines and wines, regional specialities and culinary traditions. The Chairman of the Circle of Supporters is the journalist Dr Christoph Wirtz.