Promoting sustainable production and procurement
Producing food and drink sustainably means farming and manufacturing it in a way that helps to preserve and protect the environment for future generations.
Procuring it sustainably means buying it from producers who minimise their impact on the environment, for example, by reducing their carbon emissions, and supporting the longevity of the industry.
We are promoting sustainable production and procurement to ensure a long and prosperous future for Scotland's food and drink industry, and the environment it depends on.
In January 2016 we worked with industry-led body the Scottish Organic Forum to develop an Organic Action Plan 2016-2020 outlining actions for growing the organic food and drink supply chain. The Scottish Organic Forum has disbanded and a new group, the Scottish Organic Stakeholders Group has been set up. The Scottish Government is working closely with the Scottish Organic Stakeholders Group on bringing forward the next organic action plan.
The Scottish Government and Scottish Green Party shared policy programme sets out that a new Organic Food and Farming Action Plan will be established with ambitious targets for at least doubling of the area of land under organic management by the end of this parliamentary session.
Grow your own
Part 9 of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 which came into force on 1 April 2018 made it easier for people to grow their own food by simplifying the legislation on allotments.
The Scottish Government provides funding to a range of community growing groups including Trellis, Social Farms and Gardens, GrowGreen and the Green Action Trust. This funding supports a range of activities to support therapeutic gardening, promotion of community growing and increasing the amount of land available for community growing.
Allotments and community growing spaces have an important role in the local community in terms of promoting healthy eating, alleviating poverty and inequalities, reducing isolation and encouraging nature and outdoor activities.
The Programme for Government 2021-2022 committed to a the review of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 and the Scottish Government has launched the review on 21 July 2022. The review will explore if the legislation is doing what it set out to do and if any changes are required with a particular focus on community ownership and strengthening decision-making to improve outcomes for the local community.
Local food strategy
On 20 August 2021, the Scottish Government launched Local food for everyone a public consultation on our draft local food strategy. This set out the programme of actions that the Scottish Government are currently taking to support local food consumption.
We consulted on this draft strategy, both via the written consultation and through a series of local engagement events co-designed between Scottish Government officials, Nourish Scotland and regional partners, to ensure that the public and relevant organisations had the chance comment on the draft strategy and to shape further government action to encourage local food.
The Local Food for Everyone consultation analysis has now been published. The next step for the Local Food Strategy will be to take what we have learned through the consultation and to work across the Scottish Government, partner agencies, local authorities and the third sector to identify solutions to the barriers and issues highlighted.