“Our Food” is a new project in Wales to grow sustainable and profitable food production for local people.
We need to expand food production in Wales that FEEDS WALES, is PROFITABLE and is SUSTAINABLE.
Most of the food we produce in Wales goes out of Wales and most of the food we eat comes from outside Wales. According to research by the foundational economy unit of the Welsh Government, 90% of the food purchased by the public sector in Wales comes from outside the country. Most of the profits in this system go to the intermediaries and supermarkets.
Welsh agriculture is facing unprecedented challenges: disruption of trade with Europe, possible new competition from cheap US food, the end of subsidies via Europe, a severe recession that threatens a nationally funded subsidy system, and increasingly frequent and severe weather extremes.
On top of all this, farming is being called on to take a leading role in tackling climate change and biodiversity loss, through fixing carbon and restoring nature.
We believe that a vibrant local food economy is part of the solution to this unprecedented array of pressures.
We are asking: what would it take to produce locally one third of the food consumed in our regions?
We would need to help the development of new farming enterprises that
- are viable without any subsidies, earning a decent wage for reasonable working hours for all who work on them
- fix carbon in the soil
- restore biodiversity, soil and wildlife
- produce food that local people need and want at affordable prices
- create absorbent soil that reduces flooding
- are accessible even to those who don’t own land or wealth
We would need to build better routes to local and regional markets.
We are working locally, regionally and nationally to bring about such a vision.
- We are supporting the creation of a new state-of-the-art sustainable farm that is selling to local markets within 4 months, without subsidies, and is profitable thereafter.
- We are working with local food producers to promote on-line sales.
- We are proposing an increase in local food production, supported via a programme that will build know-how and support new, profitable and sustainable farm enterprises for local and regional markets, achievable even without significant starting capital or owning land.
- This will go together with a strengthening of cooperative mechanisms to connect producers with local and regional markets.
- NATIONALLY in Wales
- We are proposing to other local food projects across Wales to join together in an alliance to call powerfully for decisive and immediate national food policy to scale up sustainable food production for local demand, with substantial changes in supply chains and rates of carbon fixing.