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Pupils sell homegrown food to reduce hunger

Words by Smiley Team

London’s youngest market traders returned to Borough Market to support those who are going hungry in London

60 pupils from 12 primary schools showcased the delicious fruit and veg they’ve grown over the past few months and sold their produce to the Market’s customers on 7 July. Previous sales have seen pupils selling their school-grown rhubarb, radishes, cucumber, marrow, lettuce, spring onions, strawberries, lavender, herb bunches, garlic and more.

The sale marks more than ten years of The Young Marketeers Programme, a partnership between Borough Market and charity School Food Matters.

Designed to help children understand where their food comes from and how to eat seasonally, the programme sees experts from the two organisations teach pupils how to grow their own produce and how to cook with it.

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This knowledge – which is becoming increasingly more important as the cost-of-living crisis saw 13.8% households experiencing food poverty in April 2022 – means that children discover invaluable home-cooking skills, as well as essential life skills, both in nutrition and entrepreneurship.

Not only do pupils gain an insight in to how to look after themselves in the future, they also learn about difficulties other children face in getting access to food, something more than 2.6 million children are currently experiencing.

All proceeds made from the market day go to London’s largest food distribution charity, The Felix Project, who the pupils visit at the start of the programme to understand the impact of food poverty and food waste.

Positive impact 

Since the Young Marketeers Programme began, children have raised £9,526 for The Felix Project through their sales – the equivalent to 55,996 meals for vulnerable families in need.

Kate Howell, Director of Engagement and Communications at Borough Market, said: “Teaching children about food has never been more important, as we see families across London and the rest of the UK experiencing food insecurity – many for the first time. We’re now in our 11th year of our partnership with School Food Matters, having supported more than 1,700 pupils through the programme, as part of our commitment to our local community and it is such a pleasure to welcome back the Summer Sale after a two-year hiatus.”

Stephanie Slater, Founder and Chief Executive of School Food Matters, added: “Not only do the children have immense fun being outside and getting their hands dirty, they also develop important life-long skills that enable them to think more carefully about the food they eat and the impact it has on the planet. We’re very excited to see the Summer Sale back at Borough Market for the first time since the Covid pandemic hit.”

Inspired to act?

FIND OUT MORE: For more information on the Young Marketeers Programme and Borough Market's partnership with School Food Matters, watch their video.

SUPPORT: You can support The Felix Project which distributes food to those in need by heading to their website. 

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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