Plans for more local produce in public sector

Norette Ferns

Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing has announced plans to increase the use of local food and drink in schools, hospitals and other public sector organisations.

Funding of £1.2 million will expand the current Food for Life programme, to increase the amount of locally-sourced and produced food in Scottish schools. And a further £100,000 will deliver a new Supplier Development Programme to help small and medium-sized food and drink businesses compete for public sector food contracts.

Mr Ewing set out details of the new measures, which were announced in last week’s Programme for Government, in today’s Scottish Government debate, ‘Scotland’s Food and Drink Strategy: Ambition 2030’.

He said:

"These new measures will put local sourcing at the heart of many public sector supply chains, meaning that more people around Scotland will be able to enjoy our locally-produced, fresh food.

"We are committing more than £1 million over the next three years so more young people in our schools have the benefit of fresh, healthy and locally sourced food and we are supporting small and medium-sized businesses to access valuable public sectors contracts which otherwise would remain out of reach.

"There is now a real opportunity to build on the good work that has already been done in this area to unlock the potential public sector food and drink market, which is worth £150 million in Scotland annually, and for the public sector to become a trailblazer for local food and drink sourcing."

Visit the Scottish Government website for more information.