Last year the ACT and Region Conservation Council released a discussion paper requesting feedback on the formation of a food plan for our region. A number of stakeholders, lead by the ACT and Region Conservation Council, were involved with the development of the ACT Region People’s Food Plan Working Paper, which aims to support growth of local and regional food economies and empower producers and consumers alike to have control and agency to help build a fair, sustainable food system. The ACT Region People’s Food Plan is based on Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance’s People’s Food Plan.
The executive summary provides a good overview so key message so will not be repeated here.
Of particular interest to Southern Harvest:
- Australian Capital Region has been defined as ACT + 17 Local Government Areas (LGA) surrounding the ACT. This is nearly identical to the Southern Harvest region, with only two outlying Council areas comitted. Encompassing the LGAs was something Southern Harvest advocated for in our submission. (Refer to map on page 10 of Working Paper).
- Southern Harvest was identified as a stakeholder in progressing the ACT Region People’s Food Plan.
- Southern Harvest Committee Members Penny Kothe (Caroola Farm), Samantha Hawker (Manager, Southern Harvest Farmers Market) and Yvette Blackman identified as “key people” within Southern Harvest.
- Provisions Deli and Grocery and Southern Harvest Committee President Colin McLean has been identified as a stakeholder.
- Southern Harvest Member member Donna O’Brien (Claron Park Produce) was named as a stakeholder.
- Southern Harvest Committee Member Ellyn Bicknell (ACT Food Revolution) is listed as a stakeholder.
- Page 20 – Develop a strong local brand. “The Southern Harvest local food brand is an example to review and potentially extend”.
- Page 27 – Lack of local meat processing identified as a barrier to local food production – Penny Kothe has organised an abattoir interest group meeting for June.
- Page 28 – Southern Harvest is mentioned as a starting point for setting up an online regional food hub.
- Page 28 – “The ACT Food Council could support a Farmers Market and local food retailers plan, and work with operators and regulators to develop clear guidelines about market content or labelling system to ensure consumers know that food is actually local, sustainable and fair” – Southern Harvest advocated for this in our submission and would be a positive move.