Work and achievements

Highlights of what London Food Link supporters help our charity to do

Since it was established in 2002, London Food Link has led the way in:

  • joining the dots between people who grow, make, cook, sell and simply enjoy food in the capital
  • helping to change the buying habits of big organisations
  • ensuring local authorities improve what they do with taxpayers' money around food
  • engaging people in community food growing initiatives and enterprises
  • helping to set up the London Food Board and contribute to strategy development

See also: London Food Link changed my life!


Current work

The Big Dig
In March 2012, we launched this initiative to engage more people in their local food-growing spaces. It has now become a nationwide project, which to date has recruited 7,500 new volunteers and created more than 29,000 community gardening volunteering opportunities.

Cage Free Capital
In 2014, we called on the capital’s boroughs to turn their backs on eggs produced by hens kept in cruel caged conditions. More than 1,000 people took action resulting in two additional Boroughs going cage free. In 2015, we are turning our attention to top visitor attractions responsible for 30 million eggs and 100,000 hens to produce them.

Capital Growth
Since 2008 we have supported the creation of more than 2012 new community food gardens, which featured in the Mayor of London’s London Plan. To date, this has involved more than 120,000 Londoners, distributed more than £600,000 in small grants, and run more than 250 training sessions for over 2000 people.

Good Food For London
Since 2011, our annual league table and good food maps shine a light on which London local authorities are demonstrating strong leadership and which are lagging behind on good food initiatives. Two thirds of all Boroughs improved their scores compared to the previous year resulting in better food for their residents, workers and service users.

The Jellied Eel
Since 2002, we have published the magazine for ethical eating in London every three months. In it we help share stories of good food initiatives, eateries, producers, community projects and more with more than 50,000 people across the capital.

London Food Poverty Campaign
In 2015, we launched a campaign to drive London local authorities to take steps to reduce the reliance on foodbanks. London boroughs have shared with us how they are supporting families in food poverty by adopting living wage policies, providing healthy food for school children and older people and making sure that everyone can shop for good food in their local area.

Urban Food Awards
In 2014, we helped launch the first awards for the capital’s good food champions as part of the Urban Food Routes initiative. We have since continued to work with The Mayor of London’s Food Team to organise this annual event.

Urban Food Fortnight
Begun as a seven day event in 2012, this cavalcade of ultra-local menus, feasts, and other events is the annual celebration of London’s local larder. Originally designed to help community food gardens to be more enterprising and work towards becoming self-financing, each year’s extravaganza now sees more than 100 food/drink growers and small-batch producers team up with ethical eateries.


Past initiatives

Buywell
As part of the Well London project, our scheme helped people on low incomes to buy good food, particularly fresh fruit and vegetables. Sales of fruit and veg in 15 participating shops in deprived areas increased by an average of 60%.

Capital Bee
In 2011 Capital Bee, we trained people from 50 community groups across London as beekeepers. The project’s legacy also includes the ‘London’s pollinators: Creating a buzz in the capital’ report.

Ethical Eats
From 2010 to 2013, we coordinated a network of around 1000 London restaurants and catering businesses. Through guidance, training and networking events, the initiative helped them identify practical steps towards becoming more sustainable, share their experiences, and promote their good work.

FoodSave
From just 2014-15, we helped around 80 food businesses prevent over 1000 tonnes of food being wasted and more than 50 community organisations make use of surplus to create meals.

Good Food on the Public Plate
From 2004 to 2012, we helped raise catering standards across the public sector, local authorities, schools, universities, care homes and hospitals. This saw £1.4m of taxpayers’ money being spent in 2010 alone on sustainable food for the London public sector.

Good Food Training
This project designed and piloted bespoke and accredited healthy and sustainable food training for caterers and buyers working in public sector institutions in London.

Olympic Food
From 2006 to 2012, we ran a five-year programme of work to win healthy and sustainable food standards for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.  This led to the London 2012 Food Vision and food at The Games featuring: 100% free range eggs; and high levels of Fairtrade products, healthier options, sustainable fish, organic milk, and free drinking water fountains. The legacy of this work includes other major international events being inspired by the guidance created when writing their own food policies, and the creation of Sustainable Fish Cities.

Sustainable Fish City
Building on the legacy of the London 2012 Olympics (see above), we launched a London project to help remove unsustainable fish from menus. This initiative is now being replicated in cities around Britain.

 

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Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming

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.