Local RootsSupplying catering outlets with local sourced food year round.
Peterborough’s aspiration to become UK’s Environment Capital: Food security is a key challenge for all UK cities as our population grows, but there is an increasing awareness that we must start producing food sustainably.
Peterborough is surrounded by some of the UK’s most productive arable land. Traditionally residents were able to source food from local farmers. Nowadays direct links between producers and end users are very poor. The food ends up being transported for miles to be processed and packed before it’s sold.
After completing market research in Peterborough, Local Roots found that even though prices are buoyant for quality local products, there is still the demand in being able to procure locally rather than finding a cheaper deal from their current suppliers.
Urban growing schemes have been evolving in recent years to harness new technologies and respond to local food challenge. Local Roots is the first company in Peterborough to tackle this problem by supplying catering outlets with food grown with minimum food miles.
There are two strands to their work:
1) To grow high quality food for local catering outlets within a 20-mile radius of Peterborough
2) To provide a scalable turnkey system that: Uses currently unused urban space for food production — reducing food miles and increasing quality.
Local Roots received £20,000 in the second round of funding to develop their commercial salad-growing business from seasonal production to all year round supply.
There are plans to use the £20,000 to set up the infrastructure to enable all year round, environmentally friendly and sustainable growing in Peterborough.
This will then enable Local Roots to build on their current progress and pilot the proposed franchise package so others can do the same in their own area.