Real Food Wythenshawe
Real Food Wythenshawe is an organisation that is looking to reconnect people with where their food comes from. They teach people how they can make changes to the way they interact with food, to tackle issues of sustainability, food waste and food poverty.
‘The food that arrives on our plate at teatime isn’t as simple as it first appears. Our food choice is influenced by so many factors: how much money we have in our packers, our culture and lifestyle, and what is going on in our lives at the particular moment of buying food.’ Food is very much a cultural touchstone and a condition of your surroundings. Educating people of environmental impacts through food is difficult as food remains wrapped up in tradition and personal experience – with habits engrained and enforced in everyday life. However some ways of living need to change.
For instance: The Average household throws away £680 worth of food and drink away each year; cooking fewer meals from scratch and instead relying on takeaway and ready meals. Also with an obsession of ‘perfectly formed’ food being the only acceptable look. These are unsustainable habits. These behaviours have led to a separation of people from where their food comes from. Issues have emerged from these ways of living, two obvious ones are, an increase in cardiovascular disease and a reliance on food imports.
Real Food Wythenshawe provide education and skills in healthy and sustainable food to increase the awareness of where food comes from, the impact on the environment of growing food and how to make changes to your diet for a healthy and sustainable life.
‘We want to make Wythenshawe exemplar for how food projects in the 21st Century should be.’
At the back of The Manchester College on Brownley Road, Wythenshawe we have a sustainable growing dome known as ‘The Geodome’. The Geodome houses aquaponics, vermiculture, hydroponic and mushrooms, working together to produce healthy sustainable food. The Geodome acts as an amazing wealth of information for outdoor education workshops, including:
- Reduce, reuse, recycle – composting, wormeries, aquaponics, food miles
- Growing your own packed lunch – Seed growing, basic tool use, healthy diets
- Alternative growing techniques – Aquaponics, hydroponics, healthy soil
- Improve people’s understanding of what constitutes healthy eating and healthy diet, as well as increasing their knowledge of how food is grown
Cooking and Eating Sustainably
This project looks to help the people of Wythenshaw to develop the skills and passion to cook healthier, cheaper and more sustainable food. This is done through cooking demonstrations, the development of cooking clubs, re-distribution of food waste and enterprise opportunities.