Food Special Interest Group

The Food Special Interest Group (SIG) has been established as a forum for public health professionals from all sectors to provide support and advocate for the importance of healthy and sustainable food systems within public health practice. In particular, the Food SIG will work to:

  • develop and advocate policies and programmes associated with sustainable and health promoting food systems that support delivery of the FPH strategic plan;
  • act as an expert resource to FPH and its members on knowledge, practice and the development of policies and strategies related to sustainable and health promoting food systems;
  • bring together specialist skills, knowledge and professional competences related to sustainable and health promoting food systems and to support best practice;
  • provide a focal point for FPH members who share a common interest in sustainable and health promoting food systems; provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, knowledge and information related to sustainable food systems.

The Food Special Interest Group reports to the Faculty's Health Improvement Committee and is co-chaired by Kristin Bash: and Dawn Jenkins:

Food and COVID-19

Food is a crucial issue in the current pandemic, and the COVID-19 outbreak has placed a strong spotlight on health inequalities in our society for which food and dietary quality are important drivers. But this should not be the case; both during and beyond the COVID-19 outbreak, food and diet could and should contribute to good health across all segments of society. To make this happen, the system that provides our food must be influenced at its heart by public health priorities.

To this end, the Food SIG is coordinating the Faculty’s response to food issues related to the immediate situation where an estimated 4.9 million people (including 12% of all children) in the UK experienced food insecurity in May 2020, representing a 250% increase over pre-pandemic levels.[i].   

As the first part of this response, the Food SIG has produced The Faculty Position on Food and COVID-19, which provides an overview of the FPH position on the current situation, the related issues, and recommended measures. COVID-19 adds to the mix of environmental, social and economic challenges already facing the food system in the UK, and the Faculty sees public health as central to this process and it will continue to clarify and advocate for necessary improvements to the food system.

[i] Foundation F. The impact of Coronavirus on food: How have things changed since the start of lockdown?: online survey of 4352 adults in the UK conducted on 14th-17th May by YouGov Plc - London: Food Foundation, 2020.

Additional FPH Food SIG resources

Abolition of PHE: Consequences for the UK Food System

Sustainable Food Systems for a Healthier UK: Discussion Paper (2019)