At the same time we believe it is important that the Public see the value of local foods and have confidence in local food labelling.
Our viewWe meet with farming and rural business organisations in the West Midlands, such as the National Farmers Union and Country, Land and Business Association to promote that vision. Both have specific campaigns promoting local produce.
The Big Lottery funded a programme called Making Local Food work which aimed to 'reconnect people and land through local food increasing access to fresh, healthy, local food with clear, traceable origins'. That included reports on local food webs. Six pilot mapping projects were undertaken in each of the English regions. The West Midlands pilot took place in Kenilworth. Following on from that we are now publishing further reports including Ledbury and Shrewsbury.
The aim is to give people the materials and support to ‘map’ – research and record - networks of farmers and growers, processors, suppliers, local food shops, as well as other local food providers such as farmers markets, box schemes, community supported agriculture and food cooperatives, through to consumers.
The findings will help us understand links between producers and consumers, and the benefits they bring to people in urban and rural areas. By raising awareness, the project should strengthen support for local food production and for better availability.