Latest news

Could tea become a 'Hero' crop?

A coalition of businesses and organisations involved in tea production has produced the 'Tea 2030' report. Tea production faces big challenges: it is grown in countries vulnerable to climate change where it faces competition for land from other crops and limited availability of key resources like energy and water. However Tea 2030 are working together to develop solutions to these problems - they want to engage consumers to create demand for sustainable tea, give growers more control over their product and encourage the tea industry to restore ecosystems through reforestation, improving water management and increasing biodiversity.

07/04/2015   Sustain

Real Bread Week fashions for flour arrangers

From 9 - 15 May, dough nuts around the world will be joining forces for Real Bread Week, the annual celebration of independent Real Bread bakeries and loafing around at home. Bakers, millers, baking teachers and everyone else can get involved, whether with friends, family, neighbours or colleagues, perhaps in association with a local bakery, café or restaurant, pub, community group, farmers’ market, school, or workplace.

07/04/2015   Real Bread Campaign

Department for Education tries to increase school meal take up

The Department for Education have commissioned the Food for Life Partnership, the Children's Food Trust and the Design and Technology Association to help junior and secondary schools increase their school meal take-up. The Food for Life Partnership are offering a support package worth up to £2,000 for schools that apply to their scheme - offering one to one support, training opportunities and online resources.  FFLP argue that increasing the take-up of school meals is a good way to help schools make the most of their money.

03/04/2015   Sustain

Parents fail to recognise child obesity

A new study has shown that parents underestimate where their child's body mass index (BMI) is on the obesity scale. The study gave questionnaires to 2976 families. Of these only four parents thought their child was very overweight - medical assessments put the figure at 369. The study was conducted by a team from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the UCL Institute of Child Health and was published in the British Journal of General Practice. See how you can support Sustain's Children's Food Campaign.

03/04/2015   Sustain

Government unwilling to extend powers of Groceries Code Adjudicator (GCA) to help dairy industry

The Government have responded to a report by the Environment Food and Rural Affairs committee on the crisis in dairy prices.  The committee recommended an extension of the Groceries Code Adjudicator to incorporate suppliers throughout the supply chain - this could help ensure a more sustainable dairy supply chain in the future. However the Government said they could not act until the statutory review of the GCA in 2016 and argued that they favoured an industry-led solution.

03/04/2015   Sustain

National Trust calls for more Marine Conservation Zones

The National Trust, in collaboration with the Marine Conservation Society are calling for supporters to urge the Government to fulfil its promise to create Marine Conservation Zones around the UK. So far only 27 of these zones have been created, although, say the National Trust, 127 possible sites were identified. The Government has now announced a public consultation on MCZs and the National Trust are urging supporters to make their views known. See Sustain's work to improve the sustainability of fish stocks.

03/04/2015   Sustain

EU milk quotas scrapped

The EU milk quota system, set up in 1984, has ended so that EU dairy businesses can compete internationally as dairy markets grow in Asia and Africa. While the European Commission have said they believe international markets like China were keen to take up European dairy products, the UK National Farmers' Union voiced concerns that this could mean further price reductions for English and Welsh dairy farmers and a return to over production and the 'milk lakes' and 'butter mountains' of the 1980s. 

03/04/2015   Sustain

Which? calls for supermarkets to publish Campylobacter plans

Consumer group Which? have launched a campaign to make all supermarkets publish the results of their Campylobacter tests. Which? have backed the Food Standards Agency, who want all supermarkets to outline their plans to tackle Campylobacter in chicken. Which? say this will help to reassure the public that supermarkets are doing everything they can to make chicken safe. Almost 30,000 people have already signed up. 

03/04/2015   Sustain

Children exposed to junk food and gambling ads on YouTubers' videos

An investigation by The Independent has revealed that adverts on some of most popular video blogs watched by teens feature sugary products like Coca-Cola and Haribo which, if broadcast on terrestrial children’s television, would be likely to break Advertising Standards Authority rules. The regulations do not currently apply to vloggers but campaigners are calling for changes to the law so that they do.

02/04/2015   Children's Food Campaign

Fast food takeaway shops grow more rapidly in deprived areas of UK

New research from the University of Cambridge’s Centre for Diet and Activity Research, shows that growing numbers of fast food takeaways are opening up, especially in deprived areas; fuelling fears that the dietary divide between rich and poor will widen further. See the response of Sustain's Children's Food Campaign

02/04/2015   Children's Food Campaign

National planning rules need to change

Fast food takeaway numbers increase everywhere, but growth more rapid in deprived areas of UK

02/04/2015   Children's Food Campaign

At least 10 times less antibiotics used in organic pigs

The Danish Food and Agriculture Ministry released statistics comparing antibiotic use in Danish organic and conventional pigs in response to a parliamentary question. Conventional pigs were treated with about ten times more doses than organic pigs - and for weaner pigs up to 20 times. In the UK, data on antibiotic use by species is not yet available but sales data suggests that use in British pigs and poultry is about 4 or 5 times higher than in Denmark. If UK organic pigs receive similar amounts of antibiotics as Danish ones, then the difference between UK organic and conventional pigs could be about 40 or 50 fold.

30/03/2015   Food and Farming Policy

Oxfordshire hospital kitchen closures could cost local economy £3m every year

The closure of hospital kitchens at Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust will mean that more than £1 million of food which can currently be spent on fresh food will now be spent instead on ready meals, creating a loss of more than £3 million in economic benefits for Oxfordshire communities. This includes the loss of local jobs and withdrawal of vital business for local businesses. Support Sustain's campaign and sign the petition to halt the closure of the hospital kitchens.

27/03/2015   Better Hospital Food

Calls for ban on sale of junk food and sugary drinks in hospitals

The British Medical Association, NHS England, MPs and leading physicians call for a ban on the sale of junk food and sugary drinks in hospitals in order that the NHS leads by example to help tackle obesity and chronic diet-related disease. Take action to improve the healthiness of hospital food by supporting Sustain's campaign.

27/03/2015   Better Hospital Food

Donate an Easter egg to the Children’s Food Campaign

Here's our very own ‘Sugar Swap’ for Easter. Buy one less chocolate egg, and give the money you save to help support the Children’s Food Campaign instead. Help us now!

27/03/2015   Children's Food Campaign

Join the sugar march

Join the Landworkers’ Alliance (LWA) as they celebrate Via Campesina’s International day of Peasant Struggle,  by marching on British Sugar PLC to expose the inequality and problems inherent in our industrial food system. Government support of big agri-businesses, like British Sugar PLC, threatens the health of our communities and the quality of our environment. And we’re subsidising exactly the wrong sort of agriculture. The March starts 1pm, 29th April from Bury St Edmunds train station.

27/03/2015   Sustain

Other side of GM story

A letter has been sent to the editor of The Independent newspaper in protest at its publication of pro-GMO articles. A group of academics and NGO representatives complained to the paper that its recent articles on GMOs were more like advertorials for the GM industry and were presented without context or some of the opposing concerns of environmentalists, agriculturalists or public health specialists. 

27/03/2015   Sustain

Freezing to tackle food waste

Iglo Group, Europe's largest frozen food company has launched a scheme with waste reduction charity WRAP to get the UK freezing more food. Iglo say UK households throw away around 850,000 tonnes of food each year which could have been eaten later if it had been frozen. They plan to launch iFreeze, a campaign providing advice and tips on how to freeze and how to use frozen food.  Find out more about Sustain's work with food waste project FoodSave

27/03/2015   Sustain

Agribusiness sector needs to tackle waste

A new report by Dutch multinational bank Rabobank shows that most wastage in the food chain happens during agricultural production, post harvest handling and storage, processing and distribution. This is losing the European Food and Agribusiness industry 60 billion Euros each year. Rabobank estimate that savings of at least 10 billion Euros could be made through innovation, for example better packaging or new harvesting machinery.

27/03/2015   Sustain

Protein Challenge 2040

Forum for the Future is working with partners like WWF, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition as well as Hersheys, Quorn and Waitrose on a project to come up with solutions to the problem of protein - how to make the protein in our diets more sustainable. Forum for the Future are keen to collaborate across government, business and civil society and welcome involvement from a wide range of organisations. 

27/03/2015   Sustain


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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.