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Public Sector Food Procurement

Volume 456: debated on Thursday 1 February 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps his Department is taking to encourage public sector bodies to procure their food requirements from (a) sustainable sources and (b) local producers. (116251)

Since its launch in 2003, the Government’s Public Sector Food Procurement Initiative (PSFPI) has highlighted practical ways in which the public sector’s £2 billion annual food budget can help deliver a world-class sustainable farming and food sector that contributes to a better environment and healthier and prosperous communities. This aim of the PSFPI is to encourage public sector buyers to work with farmers, growers, and suppliers to ensure more sustainable food is consumed in hospitals, schools, prisons and canteens. Comprehensive information about the PSFPI can be found on DEFRA’s website at

and from DEFRA’s Food Procurement Unit (Tel: 0207 270 8409). This includes details of the public sector Catering Services and Food Procurement Toolkit—which gives practical help in tendering for public sector buyers.

A copy of the Toolkit will be placed in the House Library.