Sustainable Food Conference

Date of Conference

11 April 2016


Clive Robinson (University Hospital Coventry & Warwickshire, Chair of WM NHS Sustainability Network) Louise Webster (University Hospital North Midlands) John Hughes (University Hospital North Midlands) Susannah McWilliam (Soil Association) Claire McIver & Alistair Fisher (Stoke-on-Trent City Council) Helen Ross (Nottingham City Council) Abbey Morris (South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust)

Purpose of the Conference

The Sustainable Food Conference brought together members of our WM NHS Sustainability Network and their colleagues from catering teams, along with public health representatives from local authorities, to discuss the importance of local food catering in hospitals.  The workshop was kindly hosted and co-organised by the University Hospital of North Midlands (UHNM) and was followed by a fabulous lunch – as any food conference should! Delegates learnt about how County Hospital in Stafford has achieved the Soil Association’s Gold Food for Life Catering Mark for serving fresh and healthy meals made with local and organic ingredients. The award is the result of 12 months hard work to improve the food provided to patients and visitors at County Hospital. This work is soon to be supported by a significant investment in the kitchens at County Hospital, which are planned to be refurbished. The Gold Food for Life Catering Mark guarantees that all the issues have been taken care of – health, climate change and animal welfare. More and more, people want to know where their food comes from and how it was produced. The Catering Mark recognises food providers who prepare meals using fresh, seasonal, local and organic ingredients. It provides reassurance that the food County Hospital serves meets high standards of traceability, freshness and provenance.  Susannah from the Soil Association provided an overview of this and other good practice. We also heard from other Trusts that have achieved the Mark and who have been doing other excellent work on procuring sustainable food, as well hearing about Stoke-on-Trent’s ambition to become a Sustainable Food City.

Feedback from the Conference

100% of delegates who completed an evaluation form (24 in total) considered the Conference to be good to excellent in terms of it’s organisation and content, with 100% of delegates feeling that the aims had been met to an excellent or good standard. “Excellent presentations and a great update and opportunity to network with other organisations regarding their work and taking part in discussions with the Soil Association.” “An enjoyable event and a good insight to get you motivated to do more. Thank you.” “A very important event for us to attend and we will use this learning straight away.”

Contact Information

Contact or call 0121 237 5890 for more information.


Conference introduction

 (Clive Robinson) UHNM sustainability good practice (Louise Webster) UHNM Gold Food for Life award (John Hughes) Making hospital food better (Susannah McWilliam) Stoke-on-Trent: A Sustainable Food City (Alistair Fisher & Claire McIver) Stoke-on-Trent: A Sustainable Food City VIDEO Sustainable Food in Nottingham (Helen Ross) Food For Life Hospital Leaders (Abbey Morris) Conference close (Clive Robinson)

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