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June 13, 2012

The rise and rise of local food

The profile of community horticulture and local food seems on an ever upward curve.   Scottish Government recently announced a substantial investment package for the national networks that support much of this work, a new Grow Your Own website has launched, the role of allotments has been highlighted in the Empowerment Bill consultation and events like the Scottish Orchards Gathering are becoming ever more common. All of which encourages new community based businesses like this one to take the plunge.

A GLASGOW based social enterprise is launching a new shop in the Shawlands area to promote food growing, cookery and sustainable local food.

Locavore, which means “eater of local food”, is a Community Interest Company which aims to take forward projects which contribute to creating sustainable local food economies.

The organisation’s new food hub on Skirving Street is opening on Saturday and is set to sell a wide variety of local foods, from organic vegetables to apple juice, infused oils, sausages, jams, chutneys and preserves. It will also sell a selection of books as well as homemade deli and bakery items.

Reuben Chesters, co-ordinator of Locavore, said: “We believe we need to rethink our relationship with food, from the way it is produced to the way it is cooked, eaten, and disposed of. By changing our relationship with food we can reduce the negative impact food has on the environment while improving our health, our economy, our community and our happiness!”

The community food outlet will also double as a community kitchen where regular sessions and workshops will be held on getting the very best out of local seasonal ingredients; for example, lessons in making jam and preserves, how to cook with wild food, and how to make your own wine.

Locavore projects already include “edible platforms” at railway stations on the south side, running regular gardening and food events such as workshops and hosting volunteer opportunities.

It also works with residents to launch their own food growing projects in shared garden spaces in Shawlands.