Join the campaign against TTIP
The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or TTIP, is currently being negotiated between the EU and the US. This trade deal aims to remove ‘non-tariff barriers to trade’: There’s already very little obstacle to trade between the EU and the US at present, but through TTIP other rules and regulations that multi-national corporations experience as trade barriers may be removed. This could include safety regulations, workers’ rights, environmental protection rules and food standards regulations. TTIP would further erode the power of democratic governments and would make it even harder to steer our current global food system in a more sustainable direction. Luckily, the campaign against TTIP is gaining huge support and great momentum at the moment.
You can read more about TTIP on the website of Global Justice Now, sign an EU-wide petition here and send an e-mail to your local parliamentary candidates for the UK election here.
Share your skills at the Power of Food Festival in Edinburgh
On 20-21 June 2015, The Power of Food Festival will celebrate and showcase community garden initiatives across Edinburgh. There are currently 14 gardens participating, and counting. Would you like to offer up your skills to put on an activity in one of the community food gardens taking part in the Festival? – Face-painting? Garden craft? Music? Story-telling on a food theme? Foraging and sprouting? Bugs hunt? Something else? You can contact the organisers on Facebook or at email@example.com
Help protect Edinburgh’s Greenbelt
Edinburgh’s ‘Greenbelt’ provides clean air, clean water and topsoil, a recreational space, a haven for wildlife, and, perhaps most importantly, land for current and future local food production. Yet across Edinburgh considerable commercial and political pressure is being applied to ‘develop’ Greenbelt land. A petition has been launched to garner citywide support in defence of the Greenbelt ahead of the decision to finalise the Local Development Plan in May 2015. You can sign it here.
Give your view on the catering strategy for NHS Lothian
NHS Lothian’s draft Catering Strategy 2014-2024 – Our Food, Our Health, Our Care – is now out for public engagement until 19 June 2015. One of the aims of the strategy is to “improve our ability to provide high quality meals for our patients, staff and visitors”. At the same time, the strategy outlines plans to cut the catering budget from £8m to £7m mainly by centralising food preparation, as is often done with school meals. You can e-mail your views to firstname.lastname@example.org. NHS Lothian also welcomes requests from local groups to attend meetings and talk about the strategy.
Help produce a film on food sovereignty
The Landworkers’ Alliance (LWA) is a producer led organization campaiging for the rights of small-scale food, fuel and fiber producers and a better food system in the UK. They are members of La Via Campesina, the international peasant farmers union. LWA is currently producing a documentary film to bring to light the issues of food and farming in the UK. If you’d like to contribute, contact Humphrey Lloyd on email@example.com or 07702810555.
Participate in Meat Free May
Next month, Friends of the Earth UK will run their Meat Free May campaign, challenging people to give up meat and fish for all of May while raising money for Friends of the Earth. You can sign up here to take part. FoE will help you along with meal planning tips and recipes, as well as advice to help you fundraise.
Join the Great British Bee Count
As part of its campaign to support Britain’s bees, Friends of the Earth has created the Great British Bee Count app to collect data on the nation’s bee population. This year’s count begins on the 1st May and will run until the end of the month, focusing on bees that appear earlier in the year. Last year, more than 23,000 people took part using their smartphones to document 830,000 bee sightings. Taking place between June and August, they found that more bees were seen on allotments than anywhere else. Available for both Apple and Android operating systems, the Great British Bee Count app is freely available to download now from the App Store or Google Play.
Help shape the UK Food Sovereignty Gathering
The UK Food Sovereignty Movement is organising a national gathering from 23-26 October 2015 in Hebden Bridge and Todmorden, to sketch out the future of the movement. What do you want to happen in the gathering? The organisers invite you to help shape it, by filling in this survey by Sunday 3 May.