Towards a healthier, more sustainable future
The UK food system affects the way we as individuals, and as food business operators, interact with food. We will all need to play a role to achieve healthier, more sustainable, and ethical food consumption for all.
This is the aim of a colossal review into the UK’s entire food system, The National Food Strategy, undertaken by Henry Dimbleby on behalf of the Government, which is currently underway.
The first instalment of the report was published over the summer in response to the looming food crisis due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Part 2 of the report will be more relevant to you as caterers and is due to be published in 2021.
Whilst the initial report focuses on ways in which welfare schemes can be extended to support the most vulnerable children and families post the pandemic, there are additional recommendations on establishing trade deals which will be both economically and socially advantageous to our food system post-Brexit.
The report’s recommendations include:
- Extending eligibility for the Free School Meal scheme to children from households in receipt of Universal Credit or similar benefits
- Giving children on Free School Meals access to the Holiday Scheme and Food Programme during the summer holidays
- Increasing the value of Healthy Start vouchers to £4.25 per week and including pregnant women and children under 4 in households in receipt of Universal Credits
- Extending the work of the Food to the Vulnerable Ministerial Task Force for a further 12 months up until July 2021
- The government should only agree to cut tariffs in new trade deals on products which meet our core standards that address animal welfare, environmental and climate concerns
- The government should adopt a statutory responsibility to commission and publish an independent report on any proposed trade agreements
- The government should adopt a statutory duty to give Parliament the time and opportunity to properly scrutinise any new trade deal
What happens next?
The plan is for government to publish a White Paper next year following the final part of the National Food Strategy, which will focus on transforming the UK’s food system.
The full report, summary and recommendations can be accessed here: https://www.nationalfoodstrategy.org/partone/