Plunkett - Local Food Systems Phase 1
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Plunkett Foundation - Local Food Systems Phase 1

What are local food systems?

Local food systems are groups of organisations that are united in ethical and sustainable principles, working together to improve access to local food for a wider portion of their community.

What did we do?

Local Food Systems was a pioneering project. When we first invited groups to take part in the project in 2011 we were overwhelmed by applications from enterprises that had already taken the first steps towards working together; something we were very encouraged by. Although we were only able to work with a handful of these groups, one of the driving forces throughout the project was to make sure the lessons learnt by everyone were collected and shared, so that other enterprises can collaborate in a meaningful way, extending the reach of local food for their communities. Learning from phase one of the project can be found here, as can information about the second phase and how we can help you follow in the footsteps of the pioneers. 



 Manchester Land Army


Manchester Land Army



 Manchester Land Army is a fledgling social enterprise based in Manchester striving for a just and ecologically sustainable society. They wish to demonstrate a more viable local economic system that brings together the countryside and the city, revitalising communities and encouraging local resilience. Manchester Land Army is working towards this in a number of ways, including the development of a more sustainable food system for Manchester, by working with local farmers and growers to make local, seasonal and organic produce more accessible. For more information, contact co-ordinator Chloe Wilson on


Sussex Food Hub




 Aims to bring together local growers and local restaurants to explore how to use more locally-produced food in the Brighton and Hove catering sector. The project hopes to explore the barriers and opportunities on both sides and understand the needs of both sectors in order to develop and support the infrastructure of the supply chain locally. For more information contact co-ordinator Clare Devereux at or 01273 431707.



Liverpool Food Alliance


Is building capacity, connectivity and support for community focused urban agriculture/localised food systems. An alliance of sixty varying interests are working together to shape credible models of governance, co-ordination, investment and advocacy, with future direction being informed by an emerging local food movement and increased food co-op activity. For more information contact co-ordinator Peter Rix at or 07999 752753.


Nottingham Food Partnership


Brings together 10 well-established and new community food enterprises, all with a commitment to local, sustainable food and supporting disadvantaged communities. They aim to work together to build a robust and sustainable community food system for Nottingham. For more information contact project co-ordinator Nicola Hinton on


Transition Penwith


Transition Penwith’s Food Group wants to help create a vital and resilient local food system in rural Penwith to aid the economic and social issues of the area. Six innovative community food enterprises want to achieve better collaboration to enable economically viable and sustainable enterprises. For more information contact co-ordinator Traci Lewis on




The Colne Valley project is based in the South Pennines in West Yorkshire, and brings together four existing cooperative enterprises with the aim of creating a mutually supportive consortium that will engage local people in the issues that make local food so important, and also enable them to take practical action to produce and consume more of it. For more information contact co-ordinator Graham Mitchell at


 The project focused on how the groups could be supported to work together to improve access to local food for a wider portion of the community. The project supported communities to capitalise on the benefits of collaboration and to develop mechanisms for sharing and developing as a bonded unit—a localised food system based on ethical and sustainable principles.

A report into the overall learning from phase one of the project can be downloaded from here.  


Lottery Funded