Plan to transform Calderdale food culture wins national recognition


The Calderdale Food Network has achieved membership of the Sustainable Food Cities Network, supporting the Calderdale Food Network’s efforts to make local, healthy and sustainable food available to everyone.

The Calderdale Food Network has been developed by the Soil Association’s Food for Life programme, which is funded by Calderdale Council and the Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group. The aim of the Calderdale Food Network is to make affordable, good food a defining characteristic of Calderdale. Since it was established in July 2017, the Calderdale Food Network has become an inspirational example of how communities, businesses, the Council and a wide range of local organisations can work together. 

Calderdale has now become the 52nd member of Sustainable Food Cities – a network of cross-sector partnerships in towns, cities, boroughs and counties across the country that are using food as a vehicle for driving positive change. Calderdale will benefit from sharing good practice with places across the UK from Brighton to Aberdeen.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Inequalities, Cllr Faisal Shoukat, said:

“It’s great news that Calderdale is now part of the Sustainable Food Cities Network. This is something we’ve been working towards for some time and the work of the Calderdale Food Network has been instrumental in achieving this great accolade. 

“The Calderdale Food Network is always looking for new members and is open to anyone, from those with an interest in cooking through to food manufacturers. To find out more or get involved, contact Amanda Donnelly at the Soil Association on”

Calderdale Council’s Director of Public Health, Paul Butcher, said:

“Food related ill health costs Calderdale over £20 million a year. We want this to change and being part of the Sustainable Food Cities Network is an important element of our work to make good food the easy choice for everyone.

“Knowing more about the foods we eat, where it’s come from and having access to healthy foods regularly is important to improve our health. Being part of the Sustainable Food Cities Network will allow us to build on our existing work, such as our community growing schemes, as well as learning from others in the network.”

The Calderdale Food Network includes members from public, private and third sector organisations that have a common interest in creating a sustainable and fair food system. The Calderdale Food Network is currently developing an action plan to take forward in 2018. These actions are aligned with 7 key areas:

  1. To promote healthy and sustainable food to everyone in Calderdale.
  2. To tackle food poverty.
  3. To tackle diet-related ill health, including obesity.
  4. To build community food knowledge, skills, resources and projects.
  5. To promote a vibrant and diverse sustainable food economy.
  6. To support healthy and sustainable catering and food procurement.
  7. To reduce waste and the ecological footprint of the food system.

Tom Andrews, Director of Sustainable Food Cities, said:

“In over 50 towns and cities across the UK, individuals and organisations have come together to develop a joint vision of the kind of food culture and food system they would like to see and are working together to make that vision a reality. The Calderdale Food Network has shown a real ambition to transform things for the better in Calderdale, and we are delighted to be able to support them in achieving their goals. ”


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