Bristol’s Silver Award-winning Sustainable Food Cities Application

Please go here to find our award-winning application.

Why Did the City of Bristol Win the Award?
So any reasons! Here are some top headlines on how Bristol is working to make its food system healthier, more sustainable, and more resilient…

  • Bristol started this work a long time ago; back in 1992 we chose to include food in the ‘Agenda 21’ sustainability commitments arising from the Earth Summit in Rio and this helped many projects to get off the ground
  • The ‘Who Feeds Bristol’ work was very influential; this report, commissioned in 2010, looked at the many producers and businesses that put food on our plates. It highlighted the value – for jobs, for health, and for the planet – of revitalising our food system, and helped many people realize that food is a local issue.
  • The Bristol Good Food approach covers all aspects; many people care about a better food system, whether it is to eliminate food poverty, improve health, support local businesses, keep our high street diverse, look after workers rights, animal welfare, healthy soil, biodiversity or just because of the wonderful taste of real food. Everyone who cares has united under one banner forming a diverse yet connected force for change.
  • Three strong and interconnected ‘entities’ have nurtured the Good Food work; Bristol Food Network, Bristol Food Policy Council, and Bristol Green Capital Partnership have each played an essential and distinct role, supporting and connecting many projects, hosting gatherings, co-creating plans and publicity, and together pushing for policy change.
  • Cooking, eating, and growing Good Food is going mainstream in primary schools; the Healthy Schools Programme is very strong in Bristol, and has embraced food in a really imaginative way, putting it into all curriculum areas and teaming up with the Soil Association, the BBC, and Incredible Edible. The work in schools reaches all cultures and all parts of the city. There is even a ‘Mayor’s Award’ for schools.
  • Bristol’s Businesses play a major part; with over 800 members in Bristol’s Green Capital Partnership, a ‘Go Green’ business network that is about ‘Say it, Do it, Prove it’, and a local award scheme for Workplace Wellbeing, food is seen as an essential part of businesses ecological impact, and an important part of caring for the workforce. Businesses are procuring local, organically grown, and fairly traded food. Cafes and restaurants are advertising their local suppliers, and the local currency
    the Bristol Pound is accepted by 265 local food businesses.
  • Wasting food is becoming unacceptable; Bristol is home to leading businesses and organisations specializing in resource use, as well as being the first Local Authority (since the Second World War) to introduce household food waste collections and the first city outside London to hold a Feeding the 5000 event. The aim is for no fit food to be wasted, and for any food that cannot be eaten to be used for compost and energy generation. Award winning enterprise FareShare South West distributes around 30–40 tonnes of food a month that would otherwise have gone to landfill, and runs a prestigious catering service using food destined for landfill. And this is only one example – there are many innovative schemes developing that will help transform our approach to waste.
  • Public Sector buying power is being used positively to change supply chains; a Public Sector Procurement Group involving 14 different organisations in the West of England has been working together since 2012. This has led to sharing of good practice and is achieving major shifts in how contracts are managed. Universities, colleges, schools, childrens’ nurseries, council-run cafes, and care homes are all part of the change towards local, sustainable and healthier food.
  • Celebration and connection is used to great effect; the first Love Food Festival was held in 2008 at Bristol’s ‘Paintworks’; these colourful, lively, family-friendly and celebratory events now happen several times each year attracting hundreds of visitors. Street markets have gone from a rarity, to being widespread, even including night markets with live music. Since 2014 Bristol has run a
    ‘Food Connections Festival’ coinciding with the BBC Food and Farming Awards. This is a nine-day immersive educational citywide food festival with a focus on sustainability and health. In 2014 and 2015 this engaged over 265,000 people at over 300 events, helping to create connections and make Good Food part of our culture.