Council plants new catering policy

Cllr Scott Patient at Brearley Fields

Plant-based, locally sourced food will be on the menu at future events hosted by the Council if a new catering policy is approved.

The proposed policy is specifically for catering which is paid for by the Council.  Food provided at Council hosted meetings or events will be 100% plant based, with a preference for seasonal and whole, non-processed foods.

The food system is responsible for a third of all greenhouse gases globally (National Food Strategy 2021). In the UK 20% of our greenhouse gases are from the domestic food system alone and the biggest impact of emissions from food is from agriculture.

The Council is committed to achieving net-zero carbon dioxide emissions as a local authority and a borough by 2038, with significant progress by 2030. It declared a climate emergency in 2019 and adopted the ‘Becoming a Climate Change Emergency Employer’ policy in March 2020.

This policy includes a commitment by the Council to use plant-based catering as the greenhouse gases produced by meat and dairy products have the highest impact whereas plant-based foods have the lowest.

Plant-based food consists of vegetables, grains, pulses, or foods from plants, rather than animals. Ideally plant-based food should be minimally processed. 

Cllr Scott Patient, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Action and Housing said:

“Although the Council doesn’t provide catering for events and meetings very often, we do think it’s important to lead by example, and we want to encourage other partners and businesses to consider using locally sourced, seasonal fruit and vegetables to lower their own carbon impact.”  

Climate change poses a significant threat to Calderdale’s residents, communities and businesses and action on climate change is one of Calderdale Council’s three corporate priorities. 

The proposed policy would apply at Mayor Making and any other events the Mayor holds and for Chief Officer recruitment panels where catering is provided. 

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet will be asked to recommend to Council that the policy is adopted at the next meeting of the Cabinet at 4pm on Monday 3 June 2024 at Halifax Town Hall. 

The meeting can also be viewed online at link)

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