'A footprint means pressing down and global means world, so 'global footprint' means pressing down on the world and we don't want to press too hard' (child's definition of a Global Footprint)
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Putting your foot down - Taking action  to reduce your global footprint

By learning about how and where our food is produced we can gain an understanding of interdependence – our links, through what we eat – with the people who produce our food and the environment. The decisions we make as consumers can have an impact on other people’s lives. 

Here are some ways you can reduce your footprint:

  • Buy food that is locally grown
    Eating foods that are grown locally means that you are eating foods that have not travelled far to reach you. This means reducing food miles and in particular avoiding foods that have been flown in from abroad. One of the best places to buy locally grown food is at a farmers market. These markets offer stalls at which farmers, growers or producers from the local area sell their own produce, direct to the public.
    Find out more about farmers markets and the market closest to you.

  • Grow your own food
    Your school or a local city farm or allotments might have pieces of land, advice and support to help you grow your own fruit and vegetables.
    Campaign for School Gardening

  • Eat seasonally
    Eating foods that are in season in the UK is an excellent way of reducing your footprint. Eating food that is grown in this country means that it hasn’t travelled by plane to reach your plate. Seasonal food is also fresher and so tends to be tastier and healthier.

    Find out more about eating seasonally.

  • Buy Organic Food
    Buying organic food can also help reduce your footprint. Organic farming cuts down on fossil fuels that are used in non organic farming.

    Find out more about organic food from the Soil Association.

  • Buy Fairtrade products
    There will always be some foods that are popular and that cannot be grown locally. Tea, coffee, bananas and cocoa – for chocolate – are some examples of products we will always need to import from abroad. Often these crops are grown by farmers who receive very little for their work or their products. By buying Fairtrade products you will be helping farmers and their communities in developing countries receive a fair deal.

    Find out more about Fairtrade.

  • Join a campaign group
    As aware and active global citizens we can work to persuade councils, governments and international organisations to ensure our food is fairly traded, clearly labelled, environmentally sustainable, and not abusive of either people or animals. Here are some groups campaigning on food that you could become involved with:
    The Soil Association
    Friends of the Earth
    Fairtrade Foundation
    Food Commission

Learn more

For more information about food download our Global Footprints leaflet on food click here


Food and Fairtrade

Food solutions