Sustainable Urban Food Through a Food Network
Smart & Clean Urban Food Marketplace Trendsetter
The Smart & Clean Urban Food project promoted the consumption and production of sustainable food. The project developed and piloted market and platform-based solutions for the selling and distributing of local food.
If restaurants and canteens located in the Helsinki Region reduced their food losses by 50%, emission reduction potential would be nearly 19 000 tonnes CO₂e per year.
→ Equals annual emissions of nearly 5 000 residents of Helsinki Region.
Additionally, cost reduction potential is €43 million per year.
17 000 tonnes of food goes to waste in restaurants and food services in the Helsinki Region annually.
What is it all about
Diminishing food waste leads to lower needs for food production and emissions are reduced. Delivery related emissions for transporting local food are lower than for e.g. food shipped from abroad.
Better traceability of local food enhances consumer choices impact on the health of individuals, the vitality of the local economy and environment, and a sustainable future in general.
Promoting urban food opens up completely new kinds of food consumption and distribution markets. Opportunities will open for individuals as well as existing actors, from restaurants to food producers and chain stores.
A network of operators from different levels uniquely promotes diverse urban food consumption and utilizes digital platforms as well as interactive trading channels.
The change project creates an extensive ecosystem that supports local food market and includes, for example, restaurants, digital marketplaces, educational institutions, farmers and households.
The project developed markets and platforms for many types of local food, from wild herbs to food waste. The solutions focused particularly on utilising local production and industrial surpluses, as well as streamlining logistics. Based on the solutions developed, the project partners created a model of a sustainable urban food ecosystem that includes both existing actors and projects developed within the project.
The project involved, for instance, 14 companies and five local food communities producing complementary Urban Food service concepts. For example, Forest Foody, which focuses on natural foods, Korjuu.com, a marketplace for local and organic food, logistics service Collico and local food distribution centre Uudenmaan ruoka created a platform together where information flows between the companies and the services work seamlessly together.
The next steps
In the future, the model created in the project will be refined into an even more functional system that serves restaurants in the Helsinki metropolitan area. The aim is to further develop the change project’s lessons and networks, for example, in the Farm to Restaurant project, for which funding is being sought from the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council. The project involves the Perho Culinary, Tourism and Business College, Collico Oy, Herttoniemi food co-op and Korjuu.com.
The Urban Food change project aimed to make the food system more sustainable, especially in the urban environment. Sustainable food is produced according to circular economy principles, cleanly and with intelligent use of natural resources. The aim is to eliminate food waste and protect the nutrient cycle. The aim of the project was to create markets and marketplaces for local food produced in accordance with these sustainable principles.
The Urban Food pioneer market received AIKO funding awarded by the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council for launching regional innovations and trials. The project was co-funded by the cities of Helsinki, Espoo and Vantaa, Oy Karl Fazer Ab, Apetit Ruoka Oy, Sitra and the Smart & Clean Foundation.
The project was led by Ethica Oy and the project partners were the Perho Culinary, Tourism and Business College, Svenska lantbrukssällskapens förbund (SFL), Aline Creative Technology Oy, Korjuu.com Oy, Natural Resources Institute Finland (LUKE) and Seulo Palvelut Oy (Kauppahalli24 and Collico Oy). Other stakeholders involved were Apetit Ruoka Oy, Avanto Ventures Oy, Oy Karl Fazer Ab, the City of Espoo, Forest Foody, From Waste to Taste ry, the Helsinki Deaconess Institute, Helsieni Oy, Helsinki Service Center, Herttoniemi food co-op, the City of Helsinki’s Tukkutori, Kauppahalli24, the Finnish 4H Organisation and Stadin Puutarhuri.
Where are we going
Farewell from Smart & Clean
Last week the leaked IPCC's draft report (due to be published 2022) warns us of accelerating climate devastation and paints a distressing picture of how climate change will fundamentally reshape life on Earth in the coming decades. The global average temperature has already reached 1,1°C above the pre-industrial period, and on current trends, we're heading for 3°C at best. As Nicholas Stern, former chief economist at the World Bank and author of the landmark Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change put it: "The world is confronting a complex set of interwoven challenges, and unless we tackle them together, we are not going to do very well on any of them".
Smart & Clean’s 5‐year work coming to an end – Watch the Legacy video
Smart & Clean Foundation’s fifth and final year is coming to an end in June 2021. Since 2016 we have been working hard to create climate solutions together with the Helsinki metropolitan cities, companies, universities, R&D institutions, and the Finnish state. The climate crisis can only be solved by working together.
How to tackle wicked societal problems together?
The International States of Change Learning Festival oriented around public innovation was organized in June 2020 for the first time. As part of the festival Sitra Lab organized a session around Innovation Ecosystems for Transformation.