Empoli Food2030, the culture of food in 29 points. Doubling of small fountains in 8 years

This is Empoli Food2030, a series of widely implemented objectives (we are at 80%) with which the city wants to give a coherent food policy to guarantee healthy meals for all, avoid waste in the public sectors and private, educating the youngest about healthy eating and strengthening the short circuit and local food.

The 29 actions were presented today during a press conference with a delegation of many actors present, from the Third Sector to professional associations, including lay and Catholic voluntary work. The signature comes on the 7th parile because the WHO is celebrating World Health Day today and for this year the theme is “Our planet, our health”.

Empoli aims to become an “intelligent community” of actors working to integrate the entire food supply chain towards healthy, good and reduced waste. All this in an area like 2022 where rising energy prices and the war in Ukraine have led to significant surcharges for raw materials in school canteens such as 40% for meat, 30% for dairy products and 25% for bakery products.

The city works in an already varied context of good practices: we go through the Emporio Solidale, which is about to be one year old, which supports 300 poor families, like the Billetterie Solidaire. In 2021, 4,828 meals at home were served to the population in a state of discomfort, with also the canteens of the voluntary service. During the pandemic in 2021, 1,380 household expenses were delivered to support the elderly population.

From one extreme to the other, from the elderly to the young, the school canteen of Empoli, for which 3.5 million euros are set up in the municipal budget, provided 373 thousand meals in 2021, the Counter Nutritionist had great support, alongside him works the school catering coordinator, the canteen commission. And then the meetings: food education in schools, the nutritionist who meets citizens and the canteen.

Back to the land, Empoli also has extensive experience in solidarity purchasing groups, no less than 40 social gardens spread throughout the territory, 15 producers linked to the Mercatale. The objective of the program from the point of view of food and tradition is to promote the Empoli Food 2030 quality certificate, also promoting local products from Empoli and the surrounding area in bars and catering outlets.

Finally, the last part of the supply chain, when food is consumed and remains. 500 food bags have been delivered to schools and restaurants in the city will also be equipped by 2030. Donations of unsold food are on the agenda with the Re.So Recupero Solidale association, also active in the food recovery for animal protection associations. A new canteen monitoring application will be launched in schools, while computer monitoring of special meals is already active.

The most “expensive” point in financial terms will certainly be that of the doubling of the fountains, considering that the last installation was worth an investment of 100 thousand euros, the economic plan will be half a million euros by 2030. There is already a map, explains Mayor Brenda Barnini, which will be unveiled next year. On the other hand, the most demanding point in terms of effort concerns the change of mentality, the intervention of active citizenship. Even the symbiosis of the school canteen with quality products requires a commitment from local producers for 6 thousand meals a day. A punctual organization will be necessary.

These are the signatories of the plan: Emporio Solidale, Old and New Poverty Association, Re.So. Solidarity Recovery, Provincial Confesercenti, Auser Filo d’Argento, CNA, Misericordia Empoli, Italian Red Cross, Empoli Committee, Confcommercio Empolese Valdelsa, COeSO Empoli, SintesiMinerva, Coldiretti, United Empoli Public Assistance, CIA Center of Italian Farmers of Tuscany and Union of Farmers of the Florence Empolese Region.

Elia Billero

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