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Farming and food

Local Action for Local Foods

A campaigners guide to promoting local foods including influencing key players such as local retailers, supermarkets and restaurants; the processes involved; sources of information and how to tailor a local action plan. This guide is best used in conjunction with Sustainable Local Foods.


Local food: your pocket guide

Helping you to find local food and the best reasons to buy it


Mapping Local Food Webs Toolkit

Mapping your local "food web" - the connections between producers, retailers and consumers - highlights its importance for your local economy, landscape and community. Our toolkit provides all the materials and guidance you will need for a successful project.


Mapping local food webs: concepts and methods

This report reviews key concepts and methods identified by researchers from Coventry, Warwick and Plymouth Universities to support the creation of the action pack of tools used by CPRE and volunteers to map local food webs in 19 locations around England. The report assesses relevant academic and other literature to propose participatory methods and a Five Capital Assets framework that were used to identify key social, economic and environmental benefits of local food in defined locations. It also includes details of the design of an indicator of environmental benefits developed for the mapping research.


New model farming

Resilience through diversity

The first paper in CPRE's new Food and Farming Foresight series suggests that, following the EU referendum decision, there is an opportunity for major policy change to develop a new vision and policies that will establish a sound future for farming. The paper identifies a range of recommendations to increase the diversity, sustainability and resilience of the farming sector on which so much of our countryside depends..


Supermarkets challenged to do more to support British farmers

Supermarket responses

At the start of 2013 we launched an action for our supporters that asked supermarkets what they were doing to support local food and farming on three issues:

  • promote and expand the range of products for sale that are grown in ways that enhance the character of our landscapes and that help wildlife to thrive;
  • make sure they treated their suppliers fairly and to pay British farmers and producers a fair price that takes into account the cost of production;
  • set and meet demanding targets for stocking local food. In our Vision for the Future of Farming CPRE suggests 10% of food sold in a supermarket should be sourced within 30 miles.

These are their responses.


The Real Choice

How local foods can survive the supermarket onslaught
Our report shows how local foods – grown, processed and consumed in the same district – can flourish, provided the growth of supermarket chains is restrained by sound planning policies. These 'local food webs' bring a range of social, environmental and economic benefits and help to conserve some of our most beautiful countryside.


Uncertain harvest: does the loss of farms matter?

The latest paper in CPRE's Farming Foresight paper looks at the data on farm numbers and sizes and raises questions about the loss of farms and their diversity.

UK data show that we have lost over a fifth of English farms in the past ten years alone. In particular, the number offarms below 200 hectares is falling. Numbers of intermediate and smaller farms are declining, though smaller farms are the worst affected. If current trends continue, few if any farms under 20ha could be left within a generation while most of those up to 50ha could be gone in two generations. Worse still, the official data may underestimate the extent of change occurring in who manages the land.

This report argues that farm size diversity is a crucial consideration as we move towards Brexit. It could help deliver the many public benefits that we need farming to provide and that public funding – and the market where possible – should foster and reward.


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