Cllr Claire Bloomer, Cabinet Member for Cost of Living and Inclusion, said: “I’m thrilled we’ve partnered with Feeding Gloucestershire for their Cotswold District launch. The work Feeding Gloucestershire do is so important and the idea of the proposed Food Network is to support residents and ensure food equity for all.
“In light of the current cost of living crisis we are facing, it is so important to have that community support around you and knowing that there is help out there if you are struggling to access food.
“The proposed Food Network will not only support residents, but it will focus on tackling other food-related issues such as food waste by supporting initiatives like Cirencester Pantry.
“I’m excited to explore the different options for a Food Network here in the Cotswolds, and I’m confident all the work being done is going to benefit so many residents across our district!”
Feeding Gloucestershire aims to create a Network of organisations across Gloucestershire, with members who are working collectively to identify the issues causing food inequality, and develop sustainable solutions for a better, fairer food system.
Although Feeding Gloucestershire is a County wide network, they work at District level to fully identify the different needs on the ground between the districts.
Lizzie Dyer, Project Manager at Feeding Gloucestershire, said: “It was great to launch the Feeding Gloucestershire Cotswold District group last week and it was really insightful to have so many different organisations attend to share their ideas about how we can all work together to help all our communities with food related issues.
“It is so important for these conversations to take place as food is such a huge topic that ripples into things like health and wellbeing as well as climate change and carbon footprint.
“I’m looking forward to working with Cotswold District Council in the future and developing the possibility of a Food Network.”
There is a small working group currently looking at the possibility of a Cotswold District Food Network. Cotswold District Council is part of the working group alongside Feeding Gloucestershire, Cirencester Foodbank, Cirencester Pantry and The Long Table.
Cotswold District Council has committed £40k to bring total funding to £115k towards the proposed Food Network. This funding is part of the Cotswold Connected Community and Food Programme the Council launched in December 2022.
Find out more about our Cotswold Connected Community and food programme: https://www.cotswold.gov.uk/ConnectedCommunityProgramme/
Find out more about Feeding Gloucestershire: https://www.feedinggloucestershire.org.uk/