A new digital map
that shows locations across the UK, including shops, market stalls and veg box pick up spots, where people can buy locally sourced, sustainable fruit and vegetables, has been launched.
The interactive map, produced by the Better Food Traders, a network of retailers committed to selling seasonal and ethical produce, aims to encourage local traders to sign up and gives members of the public an easy to use way to buy local produce.
The network currently has more than 40 members from across the UK with a total of over 400 pick up points, delivery areas and shops to choose from. These include London, Bristol, Sheffield, Manchester, Newcastle and Glasgow.
Veg box deliveries and interest in more sustainably grown and sourced food has boomed in recent years with weekly sales of vegetable boxes more than doubling during the lockdown.
Natasha Soares, project leader for Better Food Traders, said: “We want to give people the opportunity to buy seasonal, fresh and healthy food and the map is a perfect way for them to contact a local supplier. By attracting new traders to our network we can collectively offer an alternative to the mass produced food we find on supermarket shelves.
“Food producers and suppliers are not paid a fair price for their produce, the current UK food system is responsible for at least 20% of UK greenhouse gas emissions and we are causing irreparable harm to our soil and water.
“By working together the network is able to support farmers, growers and businesses committed to a more sustainable food system as well as provide people with tasty and nutritious local produce.”
The network is calling for an end to the supermarket monopoly on how food is supplied in the UK, for a fair price to be paid to producers and an end to the intensive farming that causes soil erosion and degradation.
The launch of the national map builds upon the success of a London version where the map was viewed over 19,000 times and people were encouraged to share it with their friends via social media channels.
The Better Food Traders network launched in January 2020 with the support of the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation in partnership with Sustain, the healthy and sustainable food and farming alliance.
A map of participating traders can be found here.