Cross Party Group on Food

In 2004 the Scottish Consumer Council worked closely with some MSPs to set up a Cross Party Group on Food. The purpose and aims are as follows;
• To raise awareness of food issues from production through to consumption in Scotland and their importance to the consumer, the economy, the environment and to the health of Scotland;
• To act as a policy forum for discussion and updating on food issues in Scotland;
• To contribute to policy development on a range of food issues in Scotland.
All minutes and papers for this session appear on the Scottish Parliament’s Cross Party Group on Food’s website.
Appendices to the minutes can be obtained from Mary Lawton, Senior Policy Advocate for Consumer Focus Scotland.
The Cross Party Group on Food met for the first time in November 2004. Minutes from that session are available from the archive at the end of this page. The Group was re-registered in July 2007 following the Scottish election. After an electronic election of the Cross Party Group, five Joint Conveners were elected:
  • John Scott (Conservative)
  • Lewis Macdonald (Labour)
  • Rob Gibson (SNP)
  • Jim Hume (Liberal Democrat)
  • Patrick Harvie (Green)
CFS and SFDF now jointly share the Secretariat.
Meetings this session have been as follows:
First meeting (28.11.07) (Scotland Food and Drink)
Second meeting (6.2.08) (Ministers Richard Lochhead and Shona Robison discuss consultation document on a national food policy)
The next two meetings were devoted to themes for the national food policy that had been requested by Cross Party group members:
Third meeting (5.3.08) (Health and Inclusion)
Fourth meeting (16.4.08) (Skills and Sustainability)
Minutes of these last three meetings were submitted for inclusion in the national food policy debate.
In addition a Short Life Working Group looking at Improving Food Access Infrastructure Serving Disadvantaged Communities was set up under the Chairmanship of John Scott MSP (available here). Minutes of these meetings were also sent for inclusion in the national food policy debate.
Meetings were then devoted to the activities of the Work streams set up to take the national food policy forward.
Fifth meeting (12.11.08) (AGM and Work Steam 5- Food Access, Affordability and Security)
First meeting (10.12.08) (Work Stream 2-Choices –to work with food and drink industry to enable and support consumers to make healthier and more sustainable choices)
Second meeting (25.2.09) (Work Stream 3-Celebrating and Enhancing Scotland’s reputation as a land of food and drink and Work Stream 1-Increasing sustainable economic growth of the food and drink industry)
Third meeting (30.9.09) (National food policy Recipe for Success-Next steps)
Fourth meeting (18.11.09) (Workstream 4 – Walking the talk –getting food procurement right. Annual General Meeting – all officers were reelected by electronic election)

Next Meetings

 The following dates and rooms have been booked:


 April 22nd Committee Room tbc

We are currently working on a programme of speakers.


Minutes and papers from the previous session are archived here:
Inaugural meeting 3.11.04 (local food procurement)
Second meeting 23.02.05 (responsible retailing in Scotland/sustainability and Local Authorities)
Third meeting 26.10.05 (skills shortages in the food and drink industry
Fourth meeting 3.5.06 (improving food access infrastructure serving disadvantaged communities)
Fifth meeting 27.9.06 (AGM and successes of the food chain)
Sixth meeting 7.2.07 (Joint meeting with Scottish Environment Link to discuss Scottish Diet Action Plan Review)
A Short life Local Food Procurement Sub Group was set up under the Cross Party
-chaired by John Scott MSP