Cate Devine

Food Writer

The opening day of the 175th Royal Highland Show may not have been as warm and sunny as June 2014, but encouraging early indications yesterday hinted that that visitor numbers to Scotland's iconic farming, food and agriculture showcase could yet smash last years 178,000 over four days. More than 47,000 tickets were sold on Tuesday alone. Even as the wind blew babies, toddlers, schoolchildren and yummy mummies enjoyed Scottish artisan ice-cream and burgers as they thronged the Ingliston showground to watch the prize Shetland and Highland ponies, Clydesdale horses, Cheviot sheep and Highland cattle as they did the rounds in front of the judges - and the cream of the Scottish farming community. Whoops of delight could be heard above the bellowing of Charolais bulls and bleating of long-horned Jacob sheep as the dramatic showcase events unfolded in the ring.

Meanwhile, in the revamped the Food Hall, rebranded as Scotland's Larder Live! this year to further emphasise the link between farming and food, a record 120 producers were busy setting up their stalls and chatting with the thousands who began passing through from the minute the doors opened. Within seconds Martin Chapman of Highland Wagyu Beef - the most expensive beef in the world - had sold two cuts ribeye on the bone at £200 a pack. The Perthshire farm started breeding the famous Japanese cattle in 2011 and now sells to 60 Michelin starred restaurants in Scotland and London. It was the first time the company had sold the beef directly to the public at the Royal Highland Show and Ms Chapman said she was "delighted" with the interest shown. the Scottish Salmon Company - whose motto is "from egg to plate" - was also present for the first time, and indicated exports could increase by a further 50,000 tonnes by 2020 due to increased demand from France, the US and China.

The Devenick Dairy in Aberdeenshire was selling a new range of rose veal sausages in innovative flavours such as beetroot and feta, strawberry jam and black pudding, together with a range of cheeses including Fet Like feta, Broon Coo Jersey Brie, Badentoy Blue and Granite City cheddar. Young farmer Kenny Groat explained that diversification using more of their herd was necessary, since the acreage of their farm was being reduced by the new Aberdeen Western Periphery Route.

In the centre of the food hall, young Scots Chef of the Year and MasterChef runner-up Adam Handling of the acclaimed Caxton restaurant in London's Westminster was the star of the new Food Standards Scotland hub - even though he wasn't cooking. Instead, he was promoting a food safety and healthy eating message to consumers. "There is no doubt that people in Scotland take an active interest in the food they eat, but information on preparing food safely can be confusing. Not everyone's aware that you shouldn't was raw poultry before you cook it and it's really important to always wash utensils and chopping boards after use - and most importantly wash your hands thoroughly throughout." Food Standards Scotland was established in April, replacing the Food Standards Agency in Scotland.

As an indication of growing demand for Scottish products, Stoats have launched a new oatcake infused with chipotle chillies, and Summer Harvest rapeseed oil is now available in white truffle and oak smoked flavours.

The First Minister Nichola Sturgeon unveiled a new Scottish dairy brand logo to help consumers identify Scottish dairy products. This is intended to help boost the diary industry after falling milk prices caused difficulties for farmers in recent months.

Meanwhile, at temperatures continued to plummet, visitors defied the cold by queueing up for more ice-cream.