Edinburgh tucks into award success for sustainable food progress

Celebrations are under way after the Capital scooped a prestigious Sustainable Food City Bronze Award for its Edible Edinburgh project. 

Edible Edinburgh partnership lands Sustainable Food City Bronze Award
Cllr George Gordon (second from right) and Edible Edinburgh colleagues accepting the award

Edible Edinburgh is now the second sustainable food partnership in Scotland to win the award, after Aberdeen. It was presented at the Sustainable Food City network’s annual conference in Newcastle today [13 June].

The Sustainable Food City Bronze award is designed to recognise and celebrate the success of towns and cities taking a joined up, holistic approach to food and who are achieving significant positive change on a range of food issues.

Edible Edinburgh’s vision is “Edinburgh is a city where good food is available and accessible for all, making for healthy people, thriving communities and a sustainable environment.” The award recognises all that the partnership is doing to promote healthy, sustainable and local food in the city.

Many of the city’s key food, health and sustainable food growing organisations and community groups are represented on the partnership, including the City of Edinburgh Council. A Sustainable Food Cities Co-ordinator supports the work of the partnership.

Key achievements of the partnership in the last two years include:

  • All Edinburgh schools, four care homes and a day centre in the city achieving the Soil Association’s Food for Life Served Here Bronze and Silver award accreditations;
  • Edinburgh’s first Food Summit, held in the spring, which brought together local and regional stakeholders involved in all aspects of the food agenda.
  • Work to address food poverty including initiatives looking at holiday hunger during the school holidays.
  • Participation by city schools, hospitals and communities in the 2019 Veg Power campaign which aimed to improve fruit and vegetable consumption rates across the city.
  • Dedicated work by a multitude of community groups to establish, run and expand the network of community gardens and food growing initiatives in the city.
  • Work by Edinburgh Community Food, Edinburgh Larder and other agencies to deliver a range of healthy eating programmes and initiatives targeting low income and hard to reach communities including cooking and nutrition sessions.

Next steps for the partnership include the development of a food growing strategy for the city, building on work already done by the Council and others to promote local growing, sustainable green places and more active lives. Work and events are also being planned to encourage better business involvement in healthy eating and sustainable, local food.

Councillor George Gordon, Chair of the Edible Edinburgh partnership, said: "I am delighted to receive this award on behalf of the partnership. A great deal of work has been done on sustainable food promotion over the last two years within the Council, by our partners and in the community, of which we should all be proud. This work is not finished. We will continue to work towards making Edinburgh a truly sustainable food city and region fit for the present and future.”

In accepting the award, Cllr Gordon paid tribute to everyone involved in the partnership, thanking them for all their dedication and work over the last two years, including: the partnership’s two sustainable food co-ordinators, Ben and Lesley; Iain Stewart, Pat Abel and Pete Ritchie and all the other members of the partnership; and all the organisations, community groups and individuals who give their time and energy to promoting healthy, local and sustainable food and growing in the city. He also thanked the Sustainable Food Cities team for their support. 

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