Sydney planning to become “fresh food city”

Posted by Isobel Drake on 25th November 2008

Sydney could be transformed into a fresh food city under a City of Sydney plan to increase the number of community gardens, employ a dedicated garden officer and expand the successful Friday Farmers Market at Cook + Phillip Park.The proposal was discussed at a meeting of Council last night, Monday 24 November.

organic food basket

Lord Mayor Clover Moore MP said the idea is part of the City’s Sustainable Sydney 2030 vision to develop local village hubs focusing community, business, retail and cultural assets in a cluster connected with the local community. “Producing food locally and consuming local produce is an essential part of sustainability,” she suggested. “People are increasingly recognising that locally and ethically produced food is good for the environment, has a reduced carbon footprint, and has social and educational benefits.”

The plan includes:

* Expanding the existing 10 community gardens in the City of Sydney to 13 with new gardens to be designed and developed in Glebe/Forest Lodge, Ultimo/Pyrmont and a Kid’s Community Garden.

* Employing a dedicated Community Gardens and Volunteer Coordinator to develop the community gardens program, including web-based resources and a volunteering program.

* Investigating expanding the successful Friday Farmers Market in Cook + Phillip Park to other areas to encourage sustainability in the production and sale of food by reducing “food miles”.

* Developing a new ‘fair trade’ award category as part of the City of Sydney Business Awards to recognise those premises which source products from ethical and fair labour.

* Allocating grants for new community garden partnerships as part of the City’s annual $4.5M grants and sponsorship program.

“Community gardens are not just about the production of food. There are environmental benefits and also important social benefits for participants to bring members of the community together for a common purpose,” Ms Moore concluded.