Sustain Bridging the Gap Six approaches to Bridge the Gap

Investing in food hubs and wholesaler supply chains

At Sustain, and in Bridging the Gap, we understand food hubs as small and medium-sized enterprises that buy from local farmers and sell to local retailers and hospitality businesses. They can take on supply chain roles, such as sorting, packing, and distribution. The difference with ‘traditional’ wholesale is that they are built on strong ethical and sustainable values.

In May 2023, Sustain and an alliance of organisations called on DEFRA to support a £5million food hub fund. Why? Because shorter and more efficient supply chains, that are farmer-focused, can help ensure farmers get fair returns. They can be more diverse and resilient and better able to withstand global and domestic shocks, while rewarding climate and nature friendly farming that will provide security over the longer-term. Furthermore, food hubs allow food producers alternatives to abusive contracts with larger supermarkets.

Developing resilient food hubs is a complex area; for one, there is no supply without demand. There is also the challenge of how this food can be affordable for those on lower incomes, and how we can, through innovation and investment, bridge this gap.

Our pilots in Hackney and Tower Hamlets are demonstrating the benefits of a food hub, with its shorter supply chain and efficient models for communities that experience low income.


Bridging the Gap: The future of food hubs and ethical supply chains



Bridging the Gap: Bridging the Gap to climate and nature friendly food for all.

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Sustain advocates food and agriculture policies and practices that enhance the health and welfare of people and animals, improve the working and living environment, promote equity and enrich society and culture.

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