Community Renewal Fund project





Full Circle:

North Northamptonshire Sustainable Food Network project

Funded by the UK Community Renewal Fund

The North Northamptonshire Sustainable Food Network is the partnership network in North Northamptonshire working towards making this part of the county a Sustainable Food Place. In 2021, Northamptonshire ACRE and Made in Northamptonshire (Mallows Company) put in a bid to the UK Government Community Renewal Fund. This £220 million fund set up by the government was to provide funding to help places across the UK prepare for the introduction of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. The fund contributes to the levelling up agenda by investing in people, places, businesses and communities that improve everyday life across the UK. Groups were asked to bid for funding*, via the Local Authority and we were delighted when Northamptonshire ACRE and Made in Northamptonshire, on behalf of the NNSFN, was awarded £106,250 to cover two specific project activiites:

  1. Rural Food Chain Research and development of an interactive food map
  2. Piloting two waste food apps and a sustainability audit

The funding runs until 31st December 2022. An evaluation report about the project will be published in January 2023, so watch this space! The project also led to several other areas of work:

Research report: Northamptonshire Food Systems by Dominic Goymour

During the project we were contacted by a reasearch student at Maastrict University, Dominic Goymour, who was interested in working with us on the food research aspect in a voluntary capacity. Dominic was studying Sustainability Science, Policy and Society in the School of Business and Economics at Maastrict University and he felt that what we were doing fitted into the area of research he was interested in and that he could contribute towards. Dominic agreed to carry out research for us on the following areas:

  1. What crops are farmed in Northamptonshire and whether they remain in the county for consumption or go elsewhere. This would help identify if crops are remaining local or not
  2. Are any crops farmed in the county that are also farmed in other countries and which is better suited to farming that crop? This was to assess the carbon footprint of various crops
  3. What farming alternatives are there to conventional crop farming and could any of them be replicated on a small scale by local groups? Dominic looked at hydroponics, aeroponices and zero tillage as alternative options

At the end of the research Dominic produced a detailed and useful report on Northamptonshire Food Systems. We have used parts of his research in our own food chain report for the CRF project, which will be published in January 2023. His report in full can be downloaded here. We are extremely grateful to Dominic for volunteering to put so much of his own time into doing this research and producing such an informative and well researched document. We wish him well in his future work.

North Northants Sustainable Food Network website and social media

As part of the funding the NNSFN was able to commission a new logo and website to be designed for the Network. You can see the logo on the left. The website for the NNSFN can be accessed here where you can also find out more information about the Full Circle project, sign up to any of the three apps and access the interactive food map. You can subscribe to our newsletter, which is published every 4 to 6 weeks and will keep you up to date with everything that is happening in North Northants to do with food. We would also like to hear from you if you are involved in the food chain in any aspect, whether as a farmer or other producer, supplier/shop owner, in the hospitality sector, run a community food larder or bank or are involved in some other way and would like people to know more about the work you are doing. We would love to do a blog about you for our website or include you in one of our newsletters. And don't forget our Facebook page and Twitter.

*Community groups had to bid for funding through their Local Authority and a list of the successful bids can be viewed here.