Funded by Forth Valley & Lomond LEADER and Stirling Council, and in partnership with Forth Environment Link, Clackmannanshire Council and West Dunbartonshire Council, a Local Food & Drink Co-ordinator post has been appointed to help grow, support, and innovate the local food system in the area. The major focus of the role has been the creation of a Local Food & Drink Vision, Strategy & Action Plan for the Forth Valley & Loch Lomond area.
This work is being led by Ashley Robinson supported by a Steering Group made up of representatives from Stirling Council, FVL LEADER, Forth Environment Link, West Dunbartonshire Council, Clackmannanshire Council and others.
The Local Food & Drink Co-ordinator role is to help build a resilient, diverse, and vibrant local food system and economy in the Forth Valley and Loch Lomond area. Aims include:
- Producing a Local Food and Drink Strategy and Action Plan for the area
- Increasing the range and number of local food production, processing, retail, and markets in the area
- Helping businesses, agencies, public bodies, and individuals work collectively/collaboratively to increase local food production
- Supporting a food system that is rooted in local economy, tourism, and ecology - one that promotes the FVL area as an area of outstanding and varied local food.
The direction and focus of the LFDC role is steered by the LFDC Steering Group. This is made up of a variety of stakeholders involved in the creation and implementation of hte LFDC role. Most representatives have come from the Forth Valley and Lomond Local Action Group, as this is the lead funder for the LFDC role, with other relevant representatives on the group as well. Current Steering Group members can be found here.
The person leading the charge is Ashley Robinson. She has a slight obsession with all things local food and is absolutely delighted to be in the Co-ordinator post. Contact her at: Robinsona @ stirling.gov.uk
Her professional background is in sustainable food education, community engagement around local food, and in rural development. She has also worked on a range of farms and in food enterprises, including an innovative market garden using bio-intensive growing practices in Canada, a variety of hill farms in the UK (sheep work), and as a director of Riverside Bakery CIC a sourdough micro-bakery. Her particular interests are in small-scale farming, innovative grazing methods, holistic management, sourdough bread, and alternative routes to market.