How to improve food at your hospital – useful links

If you want to get involved with campaigning for healthier and more sustainable food in your hospital, or in your community in general, you are not alone.

Whether you want to make your community physically healthier, or you want to reduce the environmental impact of what you’re eating, there is no need to start from scratch.

Medact’s campaign to improve Hospital Food focuses on our new report, Digesting The Indigestible, and our campaign toolkit has plenty of ideas, inspiration and actions you can take to campaign for better hospital food in your area.

But there are a wealth of organisations and groups who are already working to make real change in their communities. They can help give you practical or moral support to start your own campaigning, or you can join in with what they already have planned.

Remember, just because people are out there doing this work already, that doesn’t mean your support isn’t vital.

We are working against widespread misconceptions about the the cost of better food, as well as big corporations who are looking to make huges profits out of serving us up rubbish.

Here are just some of the best groups and resources out there for you.

Is your group missing from this list? Tell us by tweeting us @medact or email us at [email protected]

Organisations and Campaigns

  • Sustain is an organisation that works with local and government institutions to campaign for a better food and agricultural practices. They work to enhance the health and welfare of people and animals.  
  • Sustain run a campaign called The Campaign for Better Hospital Food.
  • The Collaborative Innovation for One Planet Food is an initiative by WWF, Food Ethics Council, Food and Drink Federation and ADAS to try to build a community around food issues. Find out more about it here.
  • Compassion in World Farming works with companies to improve their animal welfare-friendly sourcing.
  • The Carbon Trust provides services to companies and the public sector to help reduce their environmental footprint.
  • Sustainable Food Cities is a network of urban projects working toward sustainable food.
  • Food for Life brings schools, nurseries, hospitals and care homes, and their surrounding communities together around the core ethos of healthy, tasty and sustainable food.

Websites and Resources

  • The Campaign for Better Hospital Food this year release report called Taking the Pulse which evaluated food standards in hospitals across London.
  • The Food Standards Agency website can help you keep up to date with food safety news and regulations.  
  • The Eating Better website has articles and information from a range of partners working towards a fair, healthy, green future. The Future of Eating is Flexitarian is a particularly good report.
  • If you’re interest in local food sourcing the local food adviser has an interactive map which you can use to find out about top local suppliers.
  • Eaternity’s software allows restaurants to track and measure the carbon footprint of all their meals and purchases.
  • The Flexitarian has the latest about flexitarianism, plus some useful foraging tips.
  • WWF’s Livewell Plate resource includes a menu and shopping list for a family of four.
  • If you’re interested in staff food in particular, UNISON’s report is a good place to start.
  • Eat Seasonably tells you what foods are in season at any time.
  • Love peas? is an engaging site dedicated to the humble garden pea including great seasonal recipes.

Groups, Communities and Networks

  • Discussing your plans and ideas is a great way of keeping up the momentum of your campaigning.
  • Part time carnivore is an online space where you can join or start a part-time carnivore (flexitarian) team in your local area.
  • If you’re responsible for sourcing good for your hospital’s restaurants, canteens or cafes you could join the Eat Seasonal Network.
  • Find out what the Sustainable Food Cities network is doing in your area and join in.

Is your group missing from this list? Tell us by tweeting us @medact or email us at [email protected]

This article is part of Medact’s campaign to make hospital food tastier, healthier and more sustainable. If you want to take action to promote change in your hospital, download our Campaign Toolkit.
If you’re interested in the legislation, policies and guidelines provided to hospitals regarding their food provision and procurement, download the “Digesting the Indigestible” report here.