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22 December 2014  

INNOCAT partners showcased in GPP News Alert food special

The latest edition of the European Commission’s GPP News Alert was published on Thursday 18 December. The bumper issue, which featured four case studies, was the first News Alert to be dedicated to a specific theme. Food production is responsible for a significant portion of greenhouse gas emissions and this issue looks in detail at what European cities are doing to green their public food procurement.

INNOCAT partners Resah and the City of Turin were both featured for the work they have been doing on eco-innovative catering practices as part of the INNOCAT project. Other contributors included the city of Helsinki (Finland), Barcelona (Spain), Copenhagen (Denmark) and an interview with Gunilla Andersson, who is responsible for the sustainability of food delivered to schools and care homes in the City of Malmö (Sweden).

For more information on GPP best practice and criteria, visit the EU GPP Helpdesk.

15 December 2014  

Resah supplier helpdesk offers advice and support

INNOCAT partner Resah (Réseau des acheteurs hospitaliers de l’île de France) has created a helpdesk to guide suppliers through the tendering process for its procurement of biodegradable hospital food containers. The procurement will be managed using an online tender platform and Resah have provided a series of helpsheets to ensure the process is as straightforward as possible.

Subjects covered by the helpdesk include how to register on the platform, how to bid for a tender and how to ask a question. A broader guide answering frequently asked questions is also available.

The tender is targeted at catering service providers who have an eco-friendly and innovative solution to address one (or all) of the following three needs: biodegradable food containers; recyclable food containers and the associated recyling service; and a consulting service to reorganise internal logistics in order to sort organic waste from other waste.

For more information, visit the Resah procurement page.

9 December 2014  

New catering rating rewards sustainability in university canteens

A new voluntary ratings system has been developed to help British universities showcase their sustainability credentials. The sustainability rating comes in response to research carried out by the Higher Education Authority and the National Union of Students, which showed that more than 80 percent of students believe universities should be actively involved in both incorporating and promoting sustainable development.

The rating was developed by the Sustainable Restaurant Association in partnership with the University Catering Organisation (TUCO) and focuses on three key areas of sustainability: sourcing, environment and society. Universities who sign up will be given access to a dedicated, expert advice and support service which will work with them to improve their sustainability credentials year on year.

Julie Barker, TUCO Chair, said: “Working in partnership with the SRA, TUCO has developed a ratings model that is sector specific to our market – a model which recognises the bespoke challenges faced by those operating in the Higher Education sector while retaining its unique integrity through the way it is scored.”

For more information, visit the SRA webpage.

1 December 2014  

Hospital Food Standards Report highlights importance of sustainable procurement

A report published in August by the UK Hospital Food Standards Panel has underlined the need for all hospitals to have a sustainable procurement plan in place. Developed by a panel comprised of government and NGO representatives, the report recommends five standards which should become required practice across the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK.

According to the report, hospital food can act as a vehicle for improvement and a role model for food in the local community. As a major purchaser of food and catering services, hospitals can use their influence to improve both impacts of farm production such as biodiversity, animal welfare, seasonality and product traceability and resource efficiency throughout the supply chain, including the energy, water and waste management.

Maya de Souza, head of sustainable public procurement at Defra, said: “Hospitals are major procurers in their local areas and have the potential to shape the way our food is grown, supplied and prepared. This can be done in a way that ensures good stewardship of our agricultural land and natural resources, respect for animal welfare, avoidance of waste and obtaining wider economic and social value such as jobs and training. All this is important to the health and wellbeing of patients and staff.”

For more information, read the full report.