Veg city, the town that loves vegetable food

Veg city, the town that loves vegetable food

November 22, 2018

Veg city, the town that loves vegetable food

Every year, the Sustainable Food Cities Network helps cities to achieve sustainable food targets. During 2018-2019, the focus is on Veg City, a campaign to increase the amount of food of vegetable origin, fundamental for sustainable, healthy food.

Food is central to the social, economic and environmental challenges of the near future, but it is not just a source of problems - rather, it is an integral part of the solutions. Sustainable Food Cities (SFC) is a network promoted by British charity Sustain of more than 50 United Kingdom towns which make sustainable food a priority, developing cross-sector partnerships of businesses, businesses, academics and NGOs to ensure sustainable, healthy food in urban environments. A feature campaign is organized every year: the theme of the latest edition (to run until the end of 2019) is Veg City, the city that loves vegetable food, and aims to promote the consumption of vegetable foods, fundamental for healthy food.

More vegetables for all

The initiative was launched by the Food Cardiff NGO, a member of the SFC network, which participated in Peas Please, an initiative targeting companies or public agencies, inviting them to make a public "promise" to promote the consumption of vegetable foods (such as in company canteens). With the support of Food Foundation, Nourish Scotland and WWF, this initiative became the Veg City project. 


Increasing the availability of vegetable foods

We should eat three and a half portions of vegetables a day, which corresponds to 400 g, but 80% of children, 95% of teenagers and 80% of adults do not achieve this target, and often the situation is even worse amongst those living in or on the verge of poverty. In association with Peas Please, the Veg City campaign promotes coordination at the local level, by providing direct advice to schools and businesses to encourage consumption of vegetable foods,  - for example by growing them in workplaces - organizes seminars, and leads the various existing national activities, to increase the availability, and thus the consumption, of vegetables for everyone. This is all assisted by Veg Power, the campaign supported by various chefs which sets out to overturn many people's prejudices about vegetables. However, it is not enough simply to make vegetables more appetizing: aware of the many limitations, often due to high costs, Sustain also aims to engage with local retailers and try to reduce prices. 


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And what about fruit? The project's promoters explain that purchases of fresh and other fruit have risen by more than 50% in the last forty years, while, in spite of the increasing proof of their health benefits, we still buy about the same amount of vegetables that we used to buy in the mid '70s. 

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