Set up by New Forest Transition, the New Forest National Park Authority, and New Forest District Council, the Summit looked at how to overcome difficulties in local food production, distribution and retail.
- Processing issues (especially the need for local abattoir facilities)
- Creating a strong distribution system
- Developing an educational package for schools
- More effective marketing/publicity and communications
The event, hosted by Beaulieu’s Countryside Education Trust, was the culmination of the New Forest Food Challenge (NFFC) run by New Forest Transition and funded by the National Park Authority’s Sustainable Development Fund. The challenge to individuals, families, schools, colleges and businesses in the New Forest area is to find ways of using more local food produce.
Richard Barnett, NFFC project manager, said: ‘It was a tremendous event which showed the importance that local food has for this area. A great many positive ideas and suggestions emerged to help strengthen the local market.'
Anthony Climpson, Employment and Tourism Manager at New Forest District Council, said: ‘Local food is a vital ingredient in the local economy and the Summit showed how much passion there is to get the produce out to a strong market. We are very pleased to be able to support the project – it will form a key part of the Eat and Grow Local element of the Brand New Forest campaign.’
The summit was also supported by the National Farmers Union, Fullers Brewery and the New Forest Marque.
To become involved in developing the new Local Food Strategy contact Richard Barnett at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 023 8029 2531.