Sustainable Food Procurement - Objectives
The key objectives of a sustainable food procurement policy should include the following:
- compliance with procurement legislation - this is fundamental to any public procurement and this guidance shows you how to pursue a sustainable approach to buying food without breaching legislation
- seeking opportunities to derive social, economic, and environmental benefit
- value for money, considering whole life costs
- contracts that are structured, written and advertised in such a way that they appeal to the widest possible number of suppliers, including smaller suppliers
- contributing to achievement of the Scottish Dietary Goals
- appropriate quality assurance standards for production, food safety, and animal welfare standards
- consideration of where the main sustainability impacts in food supply may be, for example, in primary production, processing, packaging or distribution
Value for Money
The Scottish Procurement Policy Handbook, which applies to all public bodies, makes clear that the overarching aim of public sector procurement activity in Scotland must be the achievement of value for money for the taxpayer. The Handbook defines value for money as "the optimum combination of whole life cost and quality (or fitness for purpose) to meet the user's requirement.". The Handbook also says that, as part of value for money, "due regard to other relevant organisational policies is important, for example, policies in relation to corporate social responsibility/sustainability".
Value for money does not mean necessarily buying the cheapest products available. It means that you should achieve a balance that takes account of the quality of food as well as its cost.
Sustainability is an important part of value for money in the procurement of food so this guidance note interprets value for money as the optimum combination of whole life cost, quality and sustainability.
Sustainable Development requires conscious strategy and planning.
You should measure the quality of the food you buy not only by the quality of the produce, but also by the extent that the food you buy contributes towards both your own organisation's and national objectives, such as sustainable economic growth, community planning, health improvement and addressing climate change.
Sustainable Development Principles in Relation to Sustainable Food Procurement
The following gives an indication of the types of objectives that your sustainable food procurement policy might help to deliver.
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Food, Drink and Rural Communities