FFLS report reveals local food suppliers helped councils through pandemic

The Soil Association's Food for Life Scotland (FFLS), which is funded by the Scottish Government to help local authorities get fresh and sustainable food onto school dinner plates, has released its 2020-21 Impact Report.

The report explains how the Food for Life Served Here Awards work and it also highlights how the organisation has adapted to the Covid-19 pandemic by moving their work online.

Food for Life achievements in Scotland:
Bronze (920 sites)= 16.1m annual meals
Silver (83 sites)= 0.8m annual meals
Gold (1,109 sites)= 18.8m annual meals

In November 2020, Food for Life Scotland hosted Scottish producers, suppliers, and local authority staff for an online discussion and networking event to explore the business opportunities in school food procurement.

Jayne Jones, chair of ASSIST FM and commercial manager at Argyll and Bute Council, said, “It was our relationships with local suppliers that got us through the pandemic.”

In March 2021, FFLS hosted a webinar for local authority decision makers showcasing how the public plate can help build a green recovery.

Orkney Islands Council were awarded the Food for Life Served Here Bronze award for their primary, junior high and secondary school meals service, covering 1,775 healthy and nutritious school meals every day.

Scott Pring, schools catering manager at Orkney Islands Council, commented: “This has been achieved for less than the cost of a cup of coffee. For just £2.50, pupils get a two-course lunch that meets the standards and is delivered by our well trained, thoughtful and friendly kitchen staff.”

In March 2021, West Dunbartonshire Council achieved the Bronze award for their 32 primary schools and 29 early years centres, becoming the 16th local authority in Scotland to achieve the award despite the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.