Food Visions from the Great Unleashing

Below are all the visions that people at the Great Unleashing (Oct 2008) came up with that related to Food and Growing. They wrote them on leaves and stuck them on a tree… they also wrote a lot of other things that relate to other groups – you can read all their ideas here

Food and Growing

  • Trees, trees, trees
  • No paved over front gardens. All productive.
  • A Community Fruit and Nut Tree Fund. Via TTB Website
  • Roof gardens/living roofs on every roof.
  • Cooking communally in each others houses. Spreading and sharing recipes.
  • Drinking fountains in the streets
  • Orchards all across Brixton
  • Every house composts
  • Every garden growing food. Everyone involved.
  • Food Growing on school rooftops
  • Gates in garden walls. A team going round fitting gates between gardens. More neighbourliness.
  • Exchange of gluts.
  • Floating barge farms on the Thames (or divert the Thames)
  • Dig up roads and grow food instread. (leave cycle track)
  • More green growing areas for food, front gardens, roofs, verges, community allotments, greenhouses.
  • Fresh local fruit and eggs.
  • Reclaim the streets for Green. Pockets of food growing and biodiversity spots.
  • Containers on pavements, windowboxes.
  • Any trees cut down or lost to be replace by a productive fruit or nut tree.
  • Matching underused gardens to people who want to grow. Especially good for elderly people.
  • Lamp-post/parking meter trellis for beans and vines (eg grapes for wine)
  • Everyone has a bit of garden
  • Orchards in Windrush Square
  • Eurostar Terminal at Waterloo to be giant greenhouse.
  • Rail as food transport links
  • Chicken and bees in back gardens
  • Multi-storey carpark used as vertical veg gardens
  • Utilising any urban space for growing – lamp-posts, bus stop roofs, station platforms
  • Reclaim the streets for green pockets of food growing and biodiversity spots. – even window box or container on pavement or roundabout.
  • More fruit and nut trees as street trees.
  • Use all outdoor space for growing food for own locality
  • Car parking spaces on my estate (near Atlantic Road) dug up and turned into allotments.
  • Pavements growing abundantly (watered by everyone)
  • Use disused land to make forest-gardens, ornamentals near road, fruit further away.
  • Everyone using their gardens to grow food.
  • Allotments on sites waiting to be developed. eg old Cooltan/dole office, Coldharbour Lane
  • ‘Green In Da Hood’ (a musical)
  • Community led Restaurant Halls supplied by local city farms.
  • Subsidised local organic cafes on every corner
  • Guerilla gardening – use railways

Below is a summary of the visions of people who came to the Food and Growing Group Open meeting on 9th March 09. They had 10 minutes to write down their future food visions of Brixton and read them out – a lot of their thoughts overlapped so they have been grouped below.

Food Growing and Provision

  • What? Tropical food, seasonal and local vegetables, parks, fruit and nut trees, chickens, pigs, goats, cows, fish from the Thames.
  • Where? Everywhere! One all local mud! On roof tops, in greenhouses and green roof gardens, on balconies, in school (supplying school’s needs) and home gardens, on the roads (no longer used!), in orchards and forest gardens, sustainable community gardens on each estate (provide 85% of food), vertically (providing grey water filters, air conditioning and a source of cash), in key dedicated urban production areas, in CSAs (community supported agriculture) which offer camps for kids to work and learn.
  • Who? Everyone! Every house, neighbourhood and estate, every school and hospital; every community fully engaged with where their food comes from. Adults and children have work days ‘off’ in the week at key seasons to get the crops in the ground or to harvest them. There are working holidays at CSAs. There are also specialised growers who make their living this way.

Food Distribution

  • Business rates reductions for local business by the LGA encourages people to both buy and sell at local markets.
  • There are physical food hubs, green enterprises and neighbourhood shops.
  • These local markets and local shopping networks means we move away from the supermarket model.
  • No food is imported from abroad (not even fruit) – enough food is grown in Brixton or imported from CSAs via train to support it.
  • The demand and supply of food is managed locally and local food sharing and trading is encouraged.

Waste Minimisation

  • Food packaging is BANNED! (No more salad bags by 2010) Any packaging must be reusable or compostable – or REALLY recyclable.
  • Fruit and nuts are harvested, used and preserved. People only buy food that can be stored and composted and food waste is minimal.
  • Humanure is used locally, partially in biodigestion; urine is used as fertiliser, animal biogas is used for energy.
  • Green waste and domestic food waste are both collected locally, composted locally in Compost Centres (like existing recycling centres) or in mini-compost sites on estates – the resulting compost is used locally too. Composting is a salaeble skill – it is seen as key and is greatly encouraged locally and centrally as a matter of course.
  • Rain water is collected in butts everywhere.

Reskilling

  • Cooking and basic (balanced, organic, nutritious) meal preparation is taught to everyone (all kids in schools, all adults too)
  • The same goes for learning how to plant food – e.g. beans and tomatoes – and seasonality: it is central to the curriculum
  • Training creates a need to grow own food – information on vegetarianism and use of herbs.
  • Training on the use of plants for healings, dying, clothing, building materials, fuel etc is also important

The LocalEnvironment

  • Brixton is full of forest gardnes with a rich diversity of harvests – the biodiversity results in a vibrant sustainable food ecology. Things are grown in a way that makes Brixton livable not only for humans but for all other life (i.e. not intensively farmed at the cost of all other life!)
  • The area is full of nice spaces which are used for education and for growing medicinal plants, as well as food etc

Food As Life

  • No one is hungry – there is food security and equal access to affordable food
  • People eat communally everyday – it is more efficient and enjoyable!
  • There are parties to celebrate our food growth
  • Food plays a part in everyone’s day to day lives – and thier leisure time and holidays
  • There is fresh veg at every meal and greater awareness of helthy eating
  • Policy has changed so that every house and every estate has to use a certain m2 of space for food growing. Every new development has to have dedicated food growing space and has to increase food growing locally. Old developments are retrofitted. The system is loaded in favour of local shopping networks (this would have prevented the demise of Landor Road, Five Ways and Loughborough Junction shopping areas)

Below is a summary of the opportunities and actions perceived by people who came to the Future of Our Foob launch (Rosie Boycott/Claire Milne event) on the 30th April 09.

Opportunities for Feeding Brixton Better (Locally and Beyond)

    * Get the Guinness Trust forest garden going!!
    * HELP AND ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO PLANT VEG IN FRONT GARDENS – SUPPORT FOOD UP FRONT!

Actions I Will Do with Others

    * RESTAURANT/ CO-OPERATIVE/ PERMANENT FARMERS MARKET
    * DIRECTORY OF LOCAL FOOD SOURCES
          o London/ Lambeth/ Brixton/ Mystreet
          o Where SOLD or GROWN
    * CREATE A KNOWLEDGE SHARING WORKSHOP “WINNING THE CLIMATE CHANGE DEBATE”
    * FIND SOME LAND!
    * SCHEME/ NETWORK FOR BUSINESSES THAT USE BRIXTON POUND – TO FIND LOCAL SUPPLIERS/ LINKUP/ DEVELOP NEW LOCAL PRODUCTION
    * INCENTIVES FOR PEOPLE TO GIVE UN-USED GARDENS OVER TO FOOD GROWING – COUNCIL TAX DISCOUNTS
    * START GROUP FOR BULK WHOLEFOOD ORDERS e.g. SUMA HAVE MINIMUM ORDER – EASY IN LARGER GROUP
    * CLUB TOGETHER WITH NEIGHBOURS TO BUY DIRECT FROM LOCAL, ORGANIC SUPPLIERS – MEAT, VEG, FRUIT…….
    * JOIN OR SET UP LOCAL NEIGHBOURHOOD GROUP – WITH A VIEW TO COMPOSTING, FOOD BUYING AND GROWING
    * GROW THINGS!
    * ONLINE POSTCODE SITE TO FIND FELLOW GARDENERS, CYCLISTS ETC

2 responses to “Food Visions from the Great Unleashing”

  1. [...] Food Visions from the Great Unleashing (02/10/08); Open Meeting (09/03/09); Future of Our Food Launch (30/4/09) (link) [...]

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