Changing our views on food

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A LOCAL MSP has hosted a debate in the Scottish Parliament welcoming Fife Diet’s new Food Manifesto for 2012.

Claire Baker, member for Mid Scotland and Fife, led the debate last Thursday which discussed many of the points laid out in the manifesto as well as looking at Scotland’s relationship with food.

Members of the Burntisland-based Fife Diet, who watched the debate from the public gallery, produced the manifesto as part of their contribution to the food and drink policy framework with aims to ‘look afresh at the values that underpin how we organise our food economy’.

Points raised by the manifesto include the ‘Soup Test’ where every child will leave school knowing how to make a pot of soup.

The move comes after current statistics show that up to 57 per cent of 18-25 year olds are leaving home without the knowledge of how to cook simple recipes such as spaghetti bolognese.

The manifesto also suggests a plastic bag tax and farm apprenticeships amongst other ideas.

Relationship

Speaking in Parliament after the debate, which featured a number of MSPs including Kirkcaldy member David Torrance, Claire Baker said: “It was great to discuss the Food Manifesto and offer MSPs from all parties the opportunity to discuss our relationship towards food in Scotland.

“With Citizen Advice Scotland reporting a doubling in demand for food parcels and with Save the Children reporting that one in six children are going to bed hungry, a debate amongst policy makers on food economics in Scotland is vital.

“In the current climate money is tight but the manifesto offers practical solutions not restrained by budget but are rather about changing our attitudes.

“From helping to set up allotments and community gardens to running education programmes and setting off around the country in the Seed Truck, Fife Diet has been a credit to the Kingdom.”

Mike Small, founder of the Fife Diet, said: “The Food Manifesto is being developed to try and bring real change to the way we produce, distribute and consume our food.

“There’s now a general acceptance that we need legislation to help people access local food and create a more sustainable food culture.”