From Lincoln to Lincolnshire – Going Countywide

In August, the Board at the Lincolnshire Food Partnership (LFP) decided to go countywide – expanding its focus from solely Lincoln to Lincolnshire. A decision that was undertaken after numerous discussions with the Lincolnshire County Council, on distributing the Government’s Covid-19 emergency food support fund across the county (see below).

Photo: Faith & the Environment

Connections across Lincolnshire

An expansion naturally increases the ability to help and co-ordinate, with more than 40 food banks and community larders existing across the county.

Further to this, there were also other advantages for expanding countywide, such as the fact that the LFP already works with the County Healthy Weight Group and the Local Enterprise Partnership – which goes beyond Lincoln.

Additionally, most of the board members at LFP, for example the Lincolnshire Co-op, represent the county or different parts of it, and our national body – Sustainable Food Places – gave us active encouragement throughout.

The county’s agriculture and horticulture sector are also organised at this level too. Input from the County Social Economy Strategy further reinforced this scale of thinking.

We intend to serve the county’s needs in the best way possible, in all matters relating to fairer, healthier and greener food. For this reason, we would be pleased to hear from you, to know if we can help in any way possible.

Membership Supermarket underway?

Covid-19 has pushed many people into poverty.

In the August newsletter we noted that food bank use had increased by 450% in Lincolnshire between the months of May 2019 and May 2020.

In response, a partnership approach has been developed in Lincoln, to try and tackle the issue with a proposal to open a ‘membership’ supermarket.

In short, people who qualify for food bank use, would also be eligible to use such a supermarket to increase their choice in food support.

The programme is led by the Acts Trust, which runs the Lincoln Food Bank – with additional support from the Lincoln Community Larder, Lincoln Mosque and Mint Lane ‘waste food’ Café, whilst being coordinated by the LFP.

Potential sites for the supermarket are being identified, with a number of sources of funding already having been secured.

We are currently seeking to stock the supermarket with low cost items, to allow for the access to affordable food.

As for progress, it has been great; talks with the county food processors and distributors regarding food donations have been overwhelmingly positive.

Photo: Lincoln Community Larder

If you have any ideas about sourcing food for the supermarket – farm surpluses that would otherwise be ploughed back or composted, processed food that might not be suitable for full retail or retail food that has not been sold, do let us know through the contact below.

If you can help, please contact Amy Colley: amy@lincolnfoodbank.org.uk

Lincolnshire Emergency Assistance Scheme

The LFP is working with Bishop Grosseteste University to distribute Covid-19 emergency support funding for food and essential services during the pandemic. 

Groups in Lincolnshire who support people in food need can apply for grants of up to £5,000 to support their work.

The aim is to ensure that vulnerable people within Lincolnshire have improved access to food, and the money may be spent in a variety of ways to achieve this. 

Further information is available here: www.bishopg.ac.uk/foodgrants and applications can be completed here: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/TJRKBT2.  

The 2nd Phase of funding is now open: Deadline 10th February 2021

Groups and organisations who successfully apply in Phase 1 are not excluded from making an application for funding in Phase 2.

For more information, contact foodgrants@bishopg.ac.uk

Rethinking Food at the Lincoln City Football Club

The Lincoln City Foundation is partnering up with Rethink Food to launch a fantastic initiative for local primary schools called the Rethink Food Futures Programme.

This introduces children to an alternative method of food production. 

The core of this is the Tower Garden which enables schools, organisations, and businesses to grow food year-round.

It can increase yields by as much as 30% and triples the speed of growth, while using only 10% of the water and space. 

Photo: Lincoln City Foundation

The grow lights on the tower garden, pictured, allow plants to grow indoors all year long. There’s less hassle and clean up because it doesn’t use soil.

You can wheel the tower garden from the classroom to the playground, or the kitchen to the dining room.

Find out more here:  https://www.lincolncityfoundation.com/rethink-food

If you would like to sign up to our newsletter, for more updates on local food, click here.

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