Blasda – Scotland’s Local Food Feast

Launching this week is Blasda – Scotland’s local food feast, a massive celebration of the alternative to supermarket food culture  happening across the country next month.

From East Kilbride, where the entirely volunteer-driven  EKDT are heating their polytunnels with dung-heaps and kitting out every school in the town with food gardens, to Uist where they’ve been experimenting with winter vegetables, to Glasgow where another huge Glasgow Harvest will host a Blasda event, it’s all kicking off next month as part of the normally very industry driven Food and Drink fortnight.

Why is the local food movement important? Apart from the impact of food miles, it’s the extractive nature of our globalised corporate food system.

As John Harris writes here (‘Supermarket Sweep‘): if we’re not careful, we will sleepwalk into a future where the Big Four supermarkets represent the only choice we have. There are just over 8,000 supermarkets in the UK, and they account for 97% of total grocery sales. Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda and Morrisons take 76% of that market. Their share of non-food retailing currently stands at 14%, a figure up by 75% since 2003. In the two years up to November 2010, planning permission was granted to 480 stores run by the Big Four, which works out at one supermarket every other day. Since 2008, they have accounted for 87% of the retail floor space given planning permission. In May, Channel 4 News reported that by 2014 retail space operated by the Big Four was set to increase by 20%: as its report put it, “an expansion drive on a scale never seen before”. One pound in every seven spent in Britain goes to Tesco alone – and the recession seems to have only boosted the Big Four…’

Come join Blasda come join the growing movement …

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  1. Ray Bell says:

    It’s interesting… some people just don’t seem to get the whole supermarket thing. In Edinburgh, the contrast between Corstorphine and Portobello is notable… the former’s all charity shops and supermarkets big chains etc, whereas Portobello is full of numerous small shops. I tried explaining this to someone who lives in Corstorphine and they just don’t seem to get it.

    “if we’re not careful, we will sleepwalk into a future where the Big Four supermarkets represent the only choice we have. ”

    In many places, that’s the case. One of the most horrific examples is Keith in the north east. It is now a ghost town.

    On another note, I protested to my local primary school because they had banners advertising various supermarkets. I said that I didn’t want my tax money used that way, but they continue to do so, and don’t see anything wrong in it. Numerous schools seem to be doing this…

  2. David MacGille-Mhuire says:

    Michael
    This is splendid. Good luck to all involved.

    Best
    David

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