Mayor of London supports London food events

This week has seen the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan support innovative London food initiatives at the Urban Food Awards, held at Borough Market. The event was organised by Sustain during Urban Food Fortnight 2016, masterminds behind our FGSL partner project Capital Growth. Among the award finalists were Berrymede Junior School in Ealing who were shortlisted* for Capital Growth’s Growing Enterprise Award, for entrepreneurs generating income from and for their community food gardens, including schools.

FGSL City Hall event – only 3 weeks to go!

Are you inspired by Berrymede Junior School to grow food in your school? Come along to our FGSL Celebration Event at City Hall, opened by the Deputy Mayor of London Joanne McCartney, and find out more about how Food Growing Schools: London can help you do the same. There are only 3 weeks to go before the GLA opens the doors of City Hall to Food Growing Schools: London! Places are limited so book soon.

At the Urban Food Awards Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “I salute the breadth and expertise of the huge numbers of Londoners producing and growing the very best food and drink and it’s fantastic to see their entrepreneurship flourishing in our great city”.

Book your place  at our City Hall event

Our celebration event takes place on Thursday 13 October 2016, from 10.45 – 1.30pm in the prestigious London’s Living Room at City Hall. It will be a fantastic opportunity to bring together people from across the capital to join us in seeking  our ambition to get every London school growing their own food! And you can tuck in to some tasty school-grown produce downstairs in our sixth Schools Marketplace, as part of this Autumn terms Grow Your Own Business activities.

At the event you can meet our expert FGSL partners and hear about school food growing initiatives taking place all across London. Garden Organic as the lead organisation is working together with partners, Capital Growth, the Soil Association’s Food For Life project, the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), School Food Matters and Trees for Cities. The project is supported by the Big Lottery Fund and the Greater London Authority.


*Notes

Berrymede Junior School launched their Edible Playground in October 2015, with the support of our partners Trees for Cities, School Food Matters and Soil Association Food For Life. In only one year they have achieved so much – from garden fork to enterprising school food project, and now finalists in the Urban Food Awards. Amazing! Forty Hall Community Vineyard scooped the winning prize for Capital Growth’s Growing Enterprise Award. To check out the other winners visit the Sustain website.

Enterprising Croydon Schools hold Marketplace

Thursday 20 October 2016, 1.00pm – 2.00pm. FREE ENTRY.
Croydon Clocktower, Katharine Street, CR9 1ET

On Thursday 20 October, enterprising schools in the Food Flagship borough of Croydon will be hosting their very own Schools Marketplace at the Croydon Clocktower. Their second local Schools Marketplace coincides with this Autumn term’s Grow Your Own Business activities which see schools all across London growing, harvesting, packaging, promoting and selling in their local communities.

The lucky Croydon schools will show off their school grow produce from 1-2pm, selling everything from locally grown fresh fruit to vegetables, herbs, plants, jams and chutneys, all on sale for competitive prices! The Schools Marketplace is free to enter and open to all. So roll up, roll up and do your shopping in Croydon, but be careful to get there quickly before you miss out on all these edible treats. You may even find something tasty for your lunch there too! For more information about this event please email laura.flanagan@croydon.gov.uk

Don’t miss out on another exciting opportunity – the sixth FGSL Schools Marketplace at City Hall taking place on Thursday 13 October 2016, and our fantastic FGSL Celebration Event, hosted by the GLA in the prestigious London’s Living Room at City Hall on the same day.

Visit our Training and Events page to find out about more school food growing and enterprise activities taking place near you this Autumn.

 

Award for Outstanding Contribution – vote!

Vote for Stephanie!

The founder of School Food Matters, Stephanie Wood, has been shortlisted for an award! 

Learning Outside the Classroom will be celebrating the outstanding contribution made by individuals and teams to ensure young people have inspiring outdoor experiences beyond the school gate.

If you like the work School Food Matters does, please vote here under the Innovator category. It takes less than 10 seconds and just 1 click – no form filling required!

This is a public vote so please share with your networks and on social media!

Here are some ideas to get you tweeting …

Celebrate outdoor learning and vote for @sfmtweet in the @CLOtC Awards. Find us under the Innovator category http://bit.ly/TBYOEt

.@sfmtweet has been shortlisted for @CLOtC Outstanding contribution Award! Pls vote http://bit.ly/TBYOEt & look for the Innovator Award.

Thank you!

RHS Young Herb Photographer of the Year – last chance to enter!

RHS Herb Photographer of the Year. Photo by previous winner Indra Woodward.
RHS Herb Photographer of the Year. Photo by previous winner Indra Woodward.

There are now less than two weeks to get your pupils’ or students’ entries in for this year’s RHS young Herb Photographer of the Year!

RHS have teamed up with Vitacress again for this year’s competition – a great chance for your young photographers to win some fantastic prizes for them and your school or group.

They are looking for young people to send us their photographs of living herbs growing in the wild, a garden, a container or a setting of their choice. The photo can be of any herb(s) and could be growing in the UK or abroad. Photographs can also be from any season taken in the past or present.

Categories and prizes:

There are two categories for the competition: 5-10 year olds and 11-17 year olds. Two winners, one from each category, will be crowned RHS Young Herb Photographer of the Year and receive an iPad Air worth around £300 and £500 worth of horticultural materials for their school. One runner up from each category will receive an iPad Mini and £250 of horticultural materials for their school or group.

Find out more and enter here

Exciting Autumn food events

Get set for some food growing inspiration this Autumn with these fantastic events.

Urban Food Fortnight, 9-25 September 2016

Organised by Sustain, Urban Food Fortnight is the capital’s celebration of the fabulous ultra-local produce being grown, produced and cooked on our doorstep. Events will take place across London during these two weeks including pop-up dinners in community gardens, special menus featuring London-grown produce, food talks and more.  Try cheese from Tottenham, lamb reared in Enfield and salad grown in Hackney and take inspiration back to your own plot ready for some Autumn sowing and Spring planning. (Capital Growth)

Urban Harvest Feast, 17 September 2016

Get a taste of London’s edible gardens as Capital Growth community food growing gardens open their doors and welcome visitors in for free.  Events include foraging walks, cob oven pizza feasts, fresh apple pressing, bonfires and musical performances.  You can even enter your own school grown produce in a classic vegetable show in Stratford, or take inspiration and get tips on how to grow your own in Bethnal Green.

Check out the map to find out what’s happening near you.

London Fairtrade Schools Conference, 10 October 2016, 9.30am-2.30pm

Organised by Trading Visions and Fairtrade Foundation, this conference is to inspire pupils, teachers and support staff in London about Fairtrade. Don’t miss this amazing opportunity to hear two special guests, Esther and Samuel both aged 15, from a cocoa growing community in Ghana, who will speak about the Kuapa Kokoo Fairtrade co-operative that co-owns Divine Chocolate.  Other highlights include workshops on cocoa and the impact of Fairtrade, plus a make-your-own smoothie bike, and an opportunity to learn how to taste chocolate properly – yum!

The conference is open to students aged 7-14.  Places coste £2 each and are limited to up to two adults and eight students per school.  Snacks and drinks for breaks will be provided but please bring a packed lunch.

Email roxy@tradingvisions.org to book your places.

London Fairtrade Schools Conference, Friends House, 173-177 Euston Road, NW1 2BJ

 

Back to school top tips for Autumn

The Summer holidays are over and we’re back to school.  The mixture of sunshine and showers over the holiday period has been kind to the crops but with a new group of enthusiastic reception students and excited returning student gardeners, what tasks should you put to the top of the list this term?

Harvesting

You may still have some fruit and vegetables growing in your plots.  Over the next couple of weeks it’s time to dig most of them up and start planning a tasty meal. Vegetables like carrots, potatoesonions and beetroot can be harvested along with the last of the fruits like raspberries, blackberries, apples, pears and tomatoes.  If you can’t use them all straight away, our friends at Garden Organic have some great advice on storing your produce. Or you could try preserving them in jams, chutneys, pickles and juices.

Even better, why not encourage your enterprising youngsters to turn their produce into cash?  Enterprise Events held across London offer the opportunity to sell at markets or stores, but students can also set up their own pop up market at school to give parents and the local community a chance to taste their gardening successes.

The brand new Grow Your Own Business themed activity pack for 2016 is packed full of ideas and tips to help your students to Sow It. Grow It. Sell It!  The free to download pack includes links to enterprise resources, activity sheets, partner events, competitions, and top tips on growing, cooking and selling your school produce, and much much more…

Sowing and Growing

It’s not just about harvesting though, make sure you plan your plot to get the most out of the Autumn and Winter seasons.  September is a good time to try some late sowing of quick growing plants – leafy varieties like spring cabbage, pea shoots, pak choi and winter lettuce can be ready in just a few weeks.  Other seeds to try in September include chard, rocket, kale, spinach and mustard.

And as a final late autumn treat, put some seed potatoes in a large pot or sack, keep in the warmest part of the garden and transfer to a greenhouse once it starts to get a bit nippy outside.  With a bit of luck, they will be ready to harvest just before your school Christmas meal!

Young Marketeers Harvest Sale

Thursday 6 October 2016, 11am-2pm. Borough Market

Fifteen schools from Southwark and beyond will head to Borough Market laden with Autumn produce on October 6 for the 5th anniversary of the Young Marketeers Harvest Sale.

See the children in action between 11 and 2pm and purchase their delicious school-grown produce.

Beginning with whole school assemblies delivered by FareShare, children in the participating schools have been learning about the challenges of food poverty and the absurdity of food waste.

For the Harvest Sale Chris Collins, former Blue Peter Gardener, has been teaching primary school children the art of growing veg from seed and Borough Market traders share their trade secrets on how to create a winning market stall.

All proceeds from the Young Marketeers sales will go to food surplus charity FareShare, and every £ raised = 4 meals for vulnerable families. Their lovely film will tell you the whole story! Find out more (School Food Matters).

Interested in starting your own school food growing business?  Check out our new FREE Grow Your Own Business themed pack for Autumn 2016 – it’s packed full of ideas and tips to help your students to Sow It. Grow It. Sell It!

Download the pack now to find links to enterprise resources, activity sheets, partner events, competitions, and top tips on growing, cooking and selling your school produce, and much much more…

Celebrating our success – a City Hall event

FGSL growing activities at the Edible Garden Show. Photo: Jane Baker/Garden Organic
FGSL growing activities at the Edible Garden Show. Photo: Jane Baker/Garden Organic

We are delighted to announce that we will be celebrating the success of Food Growing Schools: London (FGSL) with a special event in the London’s Living Room at City Hall on Thursday 13 October, from 10.45am to 1.30pm, including lunch.

The event will be hosted by the GLA and opened by the Deputy Mayor of London Joanne McCartney. It will be a fantastic opportunity to bring together people from across the capital that have been part of our journey and that join us in our ambition to get every London school growing their own food!

Coinciding with our final Schools Marketplace in partnership with Capital Growth at City Hall, everyone coming to the event will also have the opportunity to visit the 15 stalls held by children on the Lower Ground floor. As always, schools will showcase their food growing by selling school grown produce and products such as chutneys, jams, herbs and winter salads. What better way to start our FGSL celebration than to see enterprising schools at work! The Schools Marketplace takes place as part of Grow Your Own Business activities this Autumn term.

Speakers at the celebration event include Chris Collins (Broadcaster and Head of Horticulture at Garden Organic), James Campbell (CEO Garden Organic), Professor Judy Orme MFPH (MSc Health Promotion), and Mat Jones MPhil, BA, PG Cert (University of West England) who will share the great successes of Food Growing Schools: London to date.

It will be a chance to look at why food growing is important and the transformational impact it can have on children and schools that get involved. We will hear first-hand from teachers and children about the benefits and why they think EVERY school in London should grow their own food.

To find out more and to book a place visit Eventbrite.

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Sixth Schools Marketplace Returns to City Hall

Schools Marketplace City Hall. Photo: Jane Baker/Grden Organic
Schools Marketplace City Hall. Photo: Jane Baker/Grden Organic

Our sixth (and final!) School Marketplace in partnership with Capital Growth will be held at City Hall on Thursday 13 October, from 11am to 2pm. All schools within Capital Growth network* are invited to take part, but you must sign up quickly as there are only 15 spaces available.

The FGSL theme for food growing this term is Grow Your Own Business and the Marketplace is a fine example of schools bringing that theme to life! Schools will once again be joining us to show off and sell their home-grown produce and products, such as jams, chutneys, herbs and winter salad bags.

To celebrate all this fantastic growing, we will be awarding prizes during the day for Best Dressed Stall, Most Enterprising Product and for the People’s Choice of their favourite stall.

We will also announce the winners of our FGSL Schools Survey prize draw, with prizes including a meal for two at Wahaca worth £50 and a visit from the FGSL team to give one-to-one gardening support. Last chance to win by completing our survey.

We were delighted to have the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan visit our Marketplace event this July. He visited every single stall and said, “It’s great to see these young people growing their own grub and developing entrepreneurial skills.”

Our final Marketplace promises to be just as special, coinciding with a Food Growing Schools: London Celebration Event taking place the same day in London’s Living Room at the top of City Hall. Every delegate will be visiting the Marketplace before the event – no doubt making it our busiest schools market ever!

To apply: Simply download, complete and return the application form to Maddie at maddie@sustainweb.org by Wednesday 28 September:
* If you’re not yet part of the Capital Growth network it’s free and really easy to join so get that done today and then you’re ready to apply to be part of the Marketplace too.

Discover more FGSL Training and Events this Autumn Term.

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Sow it. Grow it. Sell it!

Schools Marketplace City Hall. Photo: Jane Baker/Garden Organic
Schools Marketplace City Hall. Photo: Jane Baker/Garden Organic

From strawberry jam to tomato ketchup, and the great British apple to winter salad bags – young entrepreneurs are bringing harvest time to the city. From September to December 2016, schools across London are rolling up their sleeves to take part in Grow Your Own Business, a city-wide celebration of school food growing, enterprise and learning, creating young entrepreneurs and healthier local communities.

With the expert guidance of the Food Growing Schools: London partnership, students can learn the secret to starting their own school food growing business, raising money for their school, developing employment skills and selling healthy, home-grown food to and with their local community. Download our FREE schools activity pack to find out how.

The highlight of the term sees the Mayor of London’s Food team opening the doors of the prestigious City Hall, for the Schools Marketplace, on Thursday 13th October 2015 from 11am to 2pm. The event is organised with project partner, Capital Growth. Enterprising schools who plan for a bumper crop can apply here to be one of only 15 schools to have a free marketplace stall by Wednesday 28 September.

We are also excited to be hosting our FGSL Celebration Event, from 10.45pm to 1.30pm upstairs in the Living Room at City Hall. This is an invitation only event. To register your interest in attending, email: schools@gardenorganic.org.uk

Schools that succeed in securing a stall at the Schools Marketplace will be entered into our Marketplace Competition, celebrating the most enterprising schools with prizes being given out on the day. Categories will include the Best Dressed Stall, Most Enterprising Product and the People’s Choice of their favourite stall.

We will also announce the winners of our FGSL Schools Survey Prize Draw, with prizes including a meal for two at Wahaca worth £50 and a visit from the FGSL team to give one-to-one gardening support. Last chance to win by completing our survey.

Why Grow Your Own Business? Grow Your Own Business offers schools the opportunity to learn about enterprise through growing and selling food, giving children the chance to learn new business and employment skills, across a range of subjects (e.g. maths, technology, PSHE). Enterprise activities can engage students of all ages and capabilities, even those children who aren’t interested in the garden or healthy eating.

Download our FREE Grow Your Own Business 2016 schools activity pack.

Share your enterprise stories and tweets here: www.twitter.com/FoodGrowSchools #GYOBusiness

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