Remaking Local Food Systems: Progress and prospects for UK local food partnerships

This research shows that these food issues are often siloed. Sustainable Food Places champions the need for a coordinated, systems approach. Local food partnerships are now widespread across the UK with strongest representation in areas with high multiple deprivation. Food partnerships are playing a key role in driving the transition from traditional food poverty approaches such as food banks to long-term, sustainable, and empowering models.

Sustainable Food Places (SFP) supports local food partnerships to harness the diverse energies of the public, voluntary and business sectors along with citizens for a joined-up approach on food issues.

Read more about what Sustainable Food Places are. 

Download the full report here 

Some key takeaways: 

  • Scottish and Welsh government support is accelerating the formation of new local food partnerships. In these nations established partnerships report a virtuous cycle with increased local stakeholder confidence, a firmer financial footing, and growing scope for action.


  • The SFP Network is helping to exchange ideas and solutions to influence decision-making.


  • Food partnerships are playing key role in helping to drive the transition from traditional food poverty approaches such as food banks to more long-term, sustainable, and empowering models.


  • SFP Partnerships cover about two fifths of the total UK population. 


  • Looking towards the end of 2024 financial sustainability is a concern for many local food partnerships. Almost half (44%) are already confident of local funding, but 86% of respondents stated that future viability would also need national/UK funding.


  • For most areas in the UK, local food partnerships represent a new way of working. Diversity in their ways of working make every partnership a unique social experiment for tackling place-based food system challenges. Nevertheless, through peer-to-peer learning and our programmatic support, many partnerships have rapidly consolidated how they operate as organisations.

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