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Nourish Food Leadership Programme 2015

Programme Photographs (click to play)

Photo credits: Photographs marked CS by Clem Sandison

Nourish Food Leadership Programme 2015

In which world does frozen lasagne make sense?!

What are we for – what would a better food system look like?

How can we, individually and collectively, help transform the food system in Scotland and beyond?

These were the kinds of questions 26 food leaders from across Scotland delved into during Nourish’s first Food Leadership Programme, over the course of five jam-packed days in July at Comrie Croft, Perthshire. Producers, teachers, foragers, campaigners, bakers, community educators, nutritionists, retailers, chefs and many others had applied to take part. A huge diversity of perspectives and experiences in one room, but with a shared wish to use food as a force for positive social change in Scotland.

With the Food Leadership Programme, Nourish hoped to:

  • Create a learning space – for participants to gain a thorough understanding of the food system, its problems and possible future trajectories
  • Empower – for participants to gain the skills and confidence needed to be effective change-makers
  • Incubate – to support participants to develop transformative food initiatives, individually and collectively
  • Connect – to build a stronger food movement in Scotland, and plug participants into the global movement working towards a better food system

In the programme we looked at the history of food in Scotland, at the global food system and its underlying paradigms, at the food sovereignty principles that could inform a different, people- and planet-centered food system, at policy opportunities in Scotland right now, at leadership skills and at movement-building. We were inspired by global innovators such as Anya Hultberg from the House of Food in Denmark, Sjoerd Wartena from Terre de Liens (PDF 116KB) , Jethro Greene from the Caribbean Farmers Network and Rachel Gray from The Stop Community Food Center in Toronto. We learned from the stories of long-haul change-makers from other social movements in Scotland and visited different food initiatives across Perthshire. Building on this, we identified five strategic areas of work for the Scottish food movement in the time ahead:

  1. Movement-building & nurturing
  2. Policy development & legal change
  3. Communicating a new understanding of food (while continuing to broaden and deepen this understanding)
  4. Creating physical spaces and manifestations where a new food culture can be experienced and developed: “The tool of hospitality is probably the most powerful tool we have.
  5. Changing public food so that it embodies public values

On the last day, participants presented their learning to a wider audience before saying goodbye – with a strong sense that this was only the beginning.

If you want to be kept updated on projects and events spinning out of this new network and/or on future Nourish programmes, please sign up here.

If you have any questions about the programme, please e-mail Olga Bloemen at olga@nourishscotland.org.uk or call the Nourish office at 0131 226 1497.

Participant reflections

On the July programme:

Crossing a threshold by Bella Crowe

It’s more than just about food by Oriane Brunet

Bringing food alive by Charlie Hanks

Field visits & Foraging by Ally Aiken

From Comrie Croft to Stanley’s Laundry by Clem Sandison

Public Food by Sarah Duley

Thoughts on connectivity by Mandy Thomson

 

On the follow-up gatherings (2015-16):

Farm animals & the food system by Olga Bloemen and Bella Crowe

Scaling up urban food by Charlie Hanks

Baking for community in Stirling by Ashley Robinson

Securing the future of Tombreck Farm by Olga Bloemen

Facilitator Profiles

Pete Ritchie

Pete Ritchie

Pete has a background in community development and social policy. As executive director of Nourish, Pete is responsible with the board and staff team for focusing Nourish’s work where it can be most effective. As well as working at Nourish, Pete runs Whitmuir Organics with his partner Heather Anderson.

Olga Bloemen

Olga Bloemen

Olga Bloemen found her way into Nourish with a passion to explore both food and education as vehicles for social change. In January, she started as Nourish’s interim business manager and alongside of this worked to get this first Food Leadership Programme off the ground.

Clare Fennell

Clare Fennel

Motivated by inequalities on the global stage, Clare trained as a cell biologist and carried out research on Malaria for a number of years. A love of good food and of working at the roots of things turned this same motivation to focus her attention on food in Scotland, first by working as a baker of Real Bread, then as Business Manager, helping to set Nourish up as a staffed organisation. Clare left the Nourish office to develop an organic smallholding in Moray, and to support the development of future learning and training programmes at Nourish.

Roland Playle

Roland Playle

Roland is a facilitator whose work often links social and ecological issues to address quality of life.  He works with communities and NGOs to implement inclusive and participatory practises in the UK and abroad. He is currently working with the North Glasgow Community Food Initiative coordinating a community-led land regeneration project in a area with low social, economic and health indicators.

Participant Profiles

Amy Corrigan

Amy Corrigan

Amy Corrigan
Land use policy officer, RSPB
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system: How do we mainstream sustainable agriculture?

Elli Kontorravdis

Elli Kontorravdis

Elli Kontorravdis
Policy & Campaigns Officer, Nourish Scotland
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
What would a ‘right to food’ look like?

Julian Holbrook

Julian Holbrook

Julian Holbrook
Organic smallholder, self-employed working on climate change and social change (including food issues), proposer of the Edinburgh Food Belt concept to replace the Green Belt
Based in: Damhead

My biggest question about our food system:
How can we use peri-urban areas to upscale local food system options linking communities to land, livelihoods and stewards?

John Meechan

John Meecham

John Meechan
Chef, First Coast Restaurant
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
What is necessary for people and communities to take more collective control of food production and distribution?

Irene Mosota

Irene Mosota

Irene Mosota
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
What informs our aesthetics around food? What is the social, moral, economic and environmental impact of this?

Rachel Butterworth

Rachel Butterworth

Rachel Butterworth

Forward Coupar Angus
Based in: Forfar, Angus

My biggest questions about our food system:
How can we break the vicious circle of poverty leading to bad food choices and this perpetuating poverty more? Is this by legislation? Is it the work of grass-roots initiatives? And is it possible to break this circle?

Tom Kirby

Tom Kirby

Tom Kirby

Granton Community Gardeners
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest questions about our food system:
What is the very best use we could make of our urban greenspace land?
Who do you eat with?

Juliana Busnelo-Garvey

Juliana Busnelo-Garvey

Juliana Busnelo-Garvey
Based in: Drymen, Loch Lomond

My biggest question about our food system:
How would a large number of working class people become involved in new food systems?

Howard Wilkinson

Howard Wilkinson

Howard Wilkinson
Rural social entrepreneur, Ayrshire Food Network
Based in: Ayrshire

My biggest question about our food system:
How can locally sourced fresh food be made more widely and inclusively available at an affordable price and sustainable manner to broader community groups?

Fergus Walker

Fergus Walker

Fergus Walker

Co-founder Common Good Food

Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
How can working the land become a desirable livelihood?

Cheryl McIntyre

Cheryl McIntyre

Cheryl McIntyre
Primary school teacher and aspiring crofter, co-founded Young Crofters Association
Based in: Isle of Skye

My biggest question about our food system:
What role can crofting play in making Scotland’s food system more sustainable?

Zarina Ahmad

Zarina Ahmad

Zarina Ahmad
Climate Change & Environment Officer, CEMVO Scotland
Based in: Glasgow

My biggest question about our food system:
How do we ensure nobody starves when we have so many inequalities in accessing food?

Sarah Duley

Sarah Duley

Sarah Duley
Food for Life Catering Mark Development Manager, Soil Association Scotland
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
What is the most effective way of engaging and educating wider society in food issues to incite positive, systemic change – in light of financial pressures & the current economic system?

Ally Aiken

Ally Aiken

Ally Aiken

Beechbrae Wood & Orchard
Based in: Blackridge, West Lothian

My biggest question about our food system:
Where’s your local apple tree?

Théo Laffargue

Théo Laffargue

Théo Laffargue
Activist baker at the community-supported Riverside Bakery
Based in: Stirling

My biggest question about our food system:
How could our current context become favourable to people making their choice freely rather than forcing us into an agenda?

Mark Williams

Mark Williams

Mark Williams
Foraging tutor at Galloway Wild Foods
Based in: Gatehouse of Fleet

My biggest question about our food system:
How might land reform improve Scotland’s diet?

Hassan Waheed

Hassan Waheed

Hassan Waheed

Foodsharing Edinburgh

Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
How can I best assist sustainable development (which includes sustainable food) wherever and however I am?

Emma Stewart

Emma Stewart

Emma Stewart
Based in: Forres

My biggest question about our food system:
How do we bridge the divide between the traditional Scottish farming community and the progressive food activist community in Scotland? Both are passionate about food, yet they rarely meet – why?

Eleanor Cunningham

Eleanor Cunningham

Eleanor Cunningham

The Edinburgh Larder

Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
How can we make nutritional and local food affordable to everyone?

Clem Sandison

Clem Sandison

Clem Sandison
Freelance artist, Open Jar Collective, The Urban Orchard Project
Based in: Glasgow

My biggest questions about our food system:
How can we use art and culture to build a better food system?
How do we embody the new worldview we want to see?

Charlie Hanks

Charlie Hanks

Charlie Hanks

The Real Junk Food Project, Edinburgh
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
How can we inspire more widespread practical and financial commitment to a better, fairer food system in the context of modern expectations of convenience?

Ashley Robinson

Ashley Thompson

Ashley Robinson
FEAST project(Food Education At STirling) at Stirling University, Grow Forth Network, Forth Environment Link
Based in: Clackmannanshire, Stirling

My biggest question about our food system:
How can I be an effective and influential contributor to a more resilient, fair, meaningful food system in Scotland -one that… ENGAGES, EMPOWERS & EXCITES people to value how food is grown/perceived/eaten?

Amanda Thomson

Mandy Thomson

Amanda Thomson
GAPS practitioner / nutritional therapist
Based in: Strathkinness, Fife

My biggest question about our food system:
How can it be that in a society of plenty, we’re living, sicker, unhealthier and less nourished lives?

Stan Blackley

Stan Blackley

Stan Blackley
Gastronomy lecturer at Queen Margaret University, film maker, green campaigner
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest question about our food system:
How can we best engage, inform and motivate those who (thoughtlessly) interact with food to get them to change those interactions for the better and positively influence the food system and society?

Oriane Brunet

Oriane Brunet

Oriane Brunet
Sustainability Assistant – Food, Department for Social Responsibility & Sustainability, University of Edinburgh
Based in: Glasgow

My biggest question about our food system:
How can we make responsibly produced food accessible to everyone?

Amabel Crowe

Amabel Crowe

Amabel Crowe
Food coalition intern, Nourish Scotland & works at The Edinburgh Larder
Based in: Edinburgh

My biggest questions about our food system:
To what extent should we adopt or avoid the language of the current framework in order to affect change?
How can we present radical ideas in a cautious political system?

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