Successful initiatives which help residents to adopt a healthier attitude toward cooking, growing and eating good food have scooped top marks in the latest Good Food for London 2016 report.
The report, published by London Food Link, part of the national charity Sustain – an alliance of food and farming organisations – compiles an annual league table on work being done in the capital to improve food in relation to health, poverty, growing spaces, healthy eating and entrepreneurship.
It is deemed an effective calling card to help boroughs, policy makers, businesses and Londoners better understand how food affects almost every area of their work.
London boroughs are rated according to their action on 11 ‘good food’ measures. Croydon is ranked in the top 10 in recognition of the following initiatives undertaken to improve residents’ health and well-being.
- Stage two baby-friendly accreditation – encouraging breastfeeding to ensure the best start in life for infants.
- Promotion of food growing in the community, schools and in planning policy.
- Being an accredited Living Wage borough and promoting the Living Wage locally.
- Being a Fairtrade borough.
- Serving sustainable fish in primary schools.
- Serving cage-free eggs.
- Running a healthier catering initiative.
- Promoting access to healthy food in a local development plan.
- Running a food partnership and being a member of the Sustainable Food Cities Network.
- Changing food culture in some schools via Food for Life and Healthy Schools London schemes.
Good Food for London is supported by the Greater London Authority and partner organisations that run schemes promoting various aspects of ‘good food’, from community food-growing and school food standards, to animal welfare, sustainable fish, fair pay and fair trade.
Croydon’s Food Flagship programme is featured in the report as an example of best practice. The flagship is a partnership with local residents, communities and businesses to improve cooking and food-growing skills and helping residents understand the importance of a balanced, nutritious diet in preventing obesity.
Councillor Louisa Woodley, cabinet member for families, health and social care
“We are making great strides to help more residents and businesses to eat and offer good-quality food and to get involved in growing their own food, too. We are delighted that these actions, as well as Croydon now being a London Living Wage borough, and our adoption of the Healthier Catering Commitment have been commended in this year’s Good Food for London report.
“The focus on alleviating obesity among adults and children, and the need to tackle the problem locally, also help to validate the importance of the work we are doing and we are always seeking to do more to support our residents in this area. An example of this is the recent launch of a new interactive website at www.justbecroydon.org which focuses on six key areas of health and well-being, including healthy eating.”
The Good Food for London 2016 report can be downloaded from the Sustain website at www.sustainweb.org/londonfoodlink/goodfoodforlondon2016/