About Shetland

 

Shetland is at the very top of Britain – where Scotland meets Scandinavia; where the North Sea meets the Atlantic Ocean.  It's home to ponies, Fair Isle jumpers, Vikings, and its hundred islands produce some of the UK’s freshest, purest ingredients.  From lamb to salmon, carrots to rhubarb, and seaweed to scallops, its produce is high quality and truly local.  Shetland is the UK’s most northerly and most dramatic outpost – yet has a vibrant and emerging food sector drawing on its wonderful food heritage.

Shetland’s location 962km north of London and just 643km miles south of the Arctic Circle makes is a unique place in the UK. As far north as St Petersburg, Russia, or Anchorage, Alaska, its long summer days contrast with the short winter hours of daylight and occasional glimpses of the Northern Lights.

Many people say that Shetland looks more Scandinavian than it does Scottish or British.  The islands were owned by Scandinavia until the 15th century - and that history is reflected in many words and names used on a day-to-day basis in Shetland.  At Shetlandeli, we love celebrating the sounds and language of Shetland, so each of our products names has real Shetland meaning -

 

Muckle Flugga Piccalilli is named after a dramatic rock at the far north of Shetland where, in 1854, Thomas and David Stevenson battled some of the most ferocious waves in the UK to build Britain’s most northerly lighthouse. Thomas Stevenson brought his 19-year-old son Robert Louis Stevenson there in 1869. To this day Muckle Flugga remains one of the most stunning sights in Britain – the UK’s most northerly point after the neighbouring rock, Out Stack. Next stop directly north is the Arctic.

 

In Norse mythology, Valhalla was the enormous and majestic Great Hall of Odin. Thatched with golden shields and guarded by wolves and eagles, Valhalla was where the bravest warriors who had died in battle lived forever. Valhalla is also the name of the UK’s most northerly brewery, situated on Unst, Shetland’s northernmost island, whose craft beer forms an essential ingredient in our chutney.

 

Taing, the name of our sweet, sticky onion marmalade, is also the name of the small grass covered tidal island on the beautiful beach at Norwick on the north east coast of Unst. Although this little island seems unremarkable, it’s of great interest to geologists. Eastern Unst is an ophiolite - where a section of the earth's crust from beneath the ocean collided with an ancient continent 420 million years ago. At Norwick beach next to the Taing is a shallow trench and you can see where the ophiolite and continent meet.

Shetland is one the UK's last unspoilt places.  We're delighted to bring a little taste of Shetland to you, wherever you are.