Economic evaluation summary
The year 1 and year 2 of the economic evaluation found that:
The Project revealed opportunities to develop links with farmers and local economies through hospital procurement.
The Project achieved a shift from the first year where the evaluation found all four hospitals to be primarily sourcing non-organic food from a small pool or national and multinational companies to the second year where one of the hospitals was buying:
- directly from a regional farm
- organic dried goods from a local business in north London
- buying regional organic meat
The public sector had the power to shift how their suppliers sourced their produce, for example the Royal Brompton was able to persuade Medina to source organic milk when they had previously been an entirely non-organic dairy.
Analysis at the whole supply chain level increases the difficulty of sourcing locally and/ or organically. None of the supply chains created met these criteria across their whole supply chains.
Wider economic implications
The evaluation found there to be other criteria in addition to local and organic that have important economic, social and environmental impacts:
- food miles
- type of supplier
- relationship between the hospital and the producer
- relative wealth of local economies
- wellbeing and relationships
- the quality of the food procured
There are trade-offs when trying to simultaneously support areas facing economic disadvantage, farmers, organic farming, the local economy of the hospital and the region.