International food collaborations

As part of our work to create a healthy food city the council is part of a series of international collaborations working together on tackling food systems in cities and improving health outcomes for citizens.

The council works in partnership with the Food Foundation to maximise the potential of these collaborations and the work is overseen by the Creating a Healthy Food City sub-group of the Health and Wellbeing Board and managed by the Places Team.

These collaborations include:

Milan Urban Food Policy Pact – Launched by the Milan Municipality in 2015, the Milan Urban Food Policy Pact is an international agreement among cities from all over the world, committed "to develop sustainable food systems that are inclusive, resilient, safe and diverse, that provide healthy and affordable food to all people in a human rights-based framework, that minimize waste and conserve biodiversity while adapting to and mitigating impacts of climate change”.

Its main aim is to support cities wishing to develop more sustainable urban food systems by fostering city to city cooperation and best practices exchange.

Délice Network – Délice is a professional network dedicated to global cities who gather in order to gain expertise on using Food & Gastronomy as a major tool for the development of their territory. Délice network aims to be of paramount significance for competence building, inspiration & experience sharing. Due to numerous factors the emphasis is shifting from gastronomy to policy levers, and as such Birmingham City Council is assuming lead organisation status for the city partnership.

Birmingham India Nutrition Initiative (BINDI) – The Food Foundation facilitated a learning partnership between Birmingham, UK and Pune, India which involved the development of policies and practices as part of a ‘Food Smart City’ initiative. Food Smart Cities use data and technology to change the way that food is produced, processed, distributed and consumed. Birmingham and Pune have a common ambition to seize opportunities to support safer, healthier and more sustainable city food environments which prevent malnutrition in all its forms (overweight, obesity, micronutrient deficiencies and under-nutrition).

Food Trails – FOOD TRAILS will enable the shared design of 11 pilot activities in participating cities in order to better co-create urban food policy. The goal is to make the farm-to-fork journey sustainable and to empower communities, promote a zero-waste use of resources, promote environmentally friendly behaviour change and ensure people have healthy and secure diets.

A Horizon2020 project, FOOD TRAILS will also bring economic benefits for these cities, including jobs linked to the pilot projects. Reports on the financial instruments in city food innovation ecosystems will ensure the economic sustainability of the projects over time, and the pilot actions will identify any regulatory or administrative barriers that exist to market-based innovation in food systems.

Food Cities 2022 – A series of events are being planned in the UK and across the world to create meaningful opportunities which will help shape and inform international action to transform food systems. We will actively participate in these meetings and also create opportunities for involvement by cities who join the learning partnership.

Thi two-year project will end with a two-day meeting that takes place ahead of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham (July 2022 – date to be confirmed). Key note speeches will be delivered by international leaders and leading food system thinkers.

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