A Matter Of Food

Imagine a future of food in 2035…

In the year 2020, Covid-19 pandemic ripped through peoples’ lives, highlighting multiple crises at play – the climate crisis, racial injustice, social injustice, health crisis and the food crisis.

A linear, industrial food system, which prioritised power holding corporations above all, manifested itself in the sheer number of food insecure people in the UK, 8.4 million by 2021 01 25. [1]

The crisis of food spanned across all aspects of our lives – care, economy, politics and everyday routines. We could not expect the current food system or the government to provide us with solutions, we needed a new set of principles to imagine a socially and environmentally just food system.

It started with a proposal to turn Bowl’s Hall space at Brixton Recreation centre into Food RE:C a nourishment and recreation school which was a space for a growing community, focusing on education, training and support. It was located on the threshold of Brixton Rec with a direct link to Pope’s Road. The proposal offered a new space and a training programme for a charity called Healthy Living Platform and its community. The school focused on facilitating and testing different activities, such as a community shop, teaching spaces, a training kitchen and meeting rooms. It provided jobs and education to the local residents.

Drawing from the existing Brixton Rec example, the members of Food RE:C school wondered “What would a civic food system mean for the future of Brixton? Could it bring justice to peoples’ lives? Could it help tackle the climate crisis?” The answer was yes.

It was not an easy task trying to answer these enormous questions. It required many radical changes in the way we lived but the cost of not doing it was scarier than the changes we had to endure.

We had to change our landscapes – rip out tarmac, fight for public land and learn how to care for soil, plants and other beings. We learned how to share resources and how to collaborate.

The priority was not just to simply produce all of our food but to also create direct links with local farms. Food was a vehicle to test ideas, bring jobs to the area and establish collaborations in London and beyond who shared the same vision. Slowly but surely a network of community groups, farms, and businesses came together to build Brixton Food Commons.

– Gabrielė Paurytė

[1] ‘Food Waste and Hunger in the UK – FareShare’s Issues’, FareShare, accessed 25 January 2021, http://fareshare.org.uk/what-we-do/hungerfood-waste/.

We all want to make it.
Make it in our chosen career. Maybe make it big.

Sometimes perhaps just make it to pay day.
But whatever our ambition, what unites us all is the desire to thrive, be recognised – and be supported.
And that’s what Lambeth’s Creative Enterprise Zone is all about. Supporting creative people to do amazing creative things without having to leave our amazingly creative corner of south London.
Because we all want to make it – of course – but more than that, we want to Make It in Brixton.