Manchester Food Board

CityCo sits on the Manchester Food Board (MFB), an independent membership group that includes leading decision-makers from across Manchester’s economic, health, environment, housing, farming and social sectors.

The group works to provide clarity and strategic leadership on how food can be used to bring about positive, meaningful and lasting change in Manchester.

The MFB shares best practice, facilitates collaborative action and brings together a wider partnership of organisations from across the city. Through promoting sustainable and high-quality food, the MFB is working to address some of our city’s most difficult challenges, including climate change, poverty and obesity.

Why Food?

From fine dining restaurants to soup kitchens, from farms to supermarket shelves, the ways in which we produce, access, and eat food is fundamental to our lives. Food is at the heart of some of our greatest challenges, including diet-related ill-health, climate change, and poverty. But food is also a vital part of the solution.

The work of the MFB reflects the breadth of issues at play in the wider food system. This includes, but is not limited to: food poverty, climate change, retail and hospitality, green spaces and food growing, economic development, waste and recycling, health and well being, and community engagement.

About the Board

We all want Manchester to be a prosperous, thriving, healthy, inclusive, and green place to live, work, and play. The Board’s aim is to ensure the development of a food strategy for Manchester that:

  1. Prevents malnutrition and hunger in vulnerable groups
  2. Makes diets more sustainable
  3. Builds a shared, sustainable food culture across society, and engages our ethnically diverse population
  4. Increases local food production
  5. Creates short, transparent supply chains
  6. Builds a more inclusive food and beverage economy, and creates a more skilled and efficient workforce
  7. Reduces the carbon impact of the food system by elimination of avoidable food waste, excess packaging, and ineffective use of natural resources
  8. Supports innovation that drives more sustainable food systems through the use of data, research, and technology

These objectives were agreed in 2019. Since then, the Covid pandemic and resulting lockdowns have created societal change on a huge scale. To reflect these shifting tides, an action plan of current priorities has been set.

Action Plan

The Manchester Food Board will support a sustainable and equitable recovery for the city to help ‘build back better’. Given the current challenges we are facing, the MFB aims to:

  1. Secure access to sustainable, appropriate and nutritious food for all people
  2. Promote a vibrant food culture and helps create a dynamic and robust hospitality sector
  3. Create more resilient supply chains
  4. Reduce the environmental impacts of the food system
  5. Facilitate collaboration, research and innovation in the food system

Expert Research

The Manchester Food Board has recently provided expert advice and insight to researchers at The University of Manchester in their production of an academic report: “Incorporating Food into Manchester’s Climate Change Response”.

The report makes the case for the creation of a sustainable food mission for Manchester to ensure that the city’s recovery from Covid-19 is sustainable and inclusive.

Board Members

  • Cllr Tracey Rawlins, Executive Member for Environment, Manchester City Council (Chair)
  • Barry Gillespie, Consultant in Public Health, MHCC (Deputy Chair)
  • Alex King, Partnerships Director, CityCo
  • Andrea George, Director of Town Centres and Consumer Brands, Bruntwood Works
  • Atiha Chaudry, Chair of Manchester BME Network
  • David Houliston, Manchester City Council
  • Haleh Moravej, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Lisa Edwards, Lancashire County Chair, NFU
  • Rich Browning, CEO, Healthy Me Healthy Communities
  • Rosie Longden, Head of Community Investment, Great Places Housing Group
  • Sean Ruffell, Organic North


The Manchester Food Board is facilitated by FoodSync.

Follow and Get Involved

Follow the partnership’s work and news on Twitter @MCRFoodBoard

Sign up to receive the MFB newsletter

If you are a CityCo or Manchester BID Member, and need assistance, please email