New opportunities for more sustainable, independent food

14/08/2009 - 00:00
After Defra launched the Food 2030 report on the future of food earlier this week, Provenance, a new London and East Anglia based partnership, is offering a range of services to independent food businesses across the supply chain.

Provenance is placing an emphasis on supporting, promoting and developing more sustainable and local supply chains. Amongst Provenance's services is support for independent food suppliers in winning contracts to supply public sector markets. The public sector catering market in England is worth £2 billion annually. Provenance says it recognises that many small and local suppliers can supply quality local food to schools, hospitals and other outlets, but face obstacles that favour larger businesses with more experience and resources. "These obstacles have been highlighted this week by the launch of Sustain's new Good Food for our Money campaign, demanding 'mandatory standards for 100% procurement of healthy and sustainable food in the public sector'. "Food suppliers are often simply not aware of opportunities to supply the public sector. While all public sector contracts above specified thresholds are advertised in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) and subscription services provide alerts of opportunities, accessing this information is often expensive or difficult," the company said. Provenance has launched the first entirely free alert service to notify businesses of every upcoming public sector food supply contract advertised in the OJEU. Businesses can subscribe through Provenance's website to receive daily or weekly emails with details of every contract. Provenance can provide further support in meeting the requirements of public sector purchasers and tendering for contracts. Provenance can also help manage supply chains, bringing professional standards and systems to independent food supply chains of every scale; audit supply chains to demonstrate and improve sustainability; and provide affordable but effective advice on marketing and communication, from support for direct marketing initiatives to development of web sites and services.

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