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Douglas St, Centre
Cork, Ireland

A one-day event on fair & healthy food in Cork, Ireland, packed with talks, discussion, field visits & feasting!

Event Background

As part of the transnational project Fair and Healthy Food, GEF aims to reach different actors and bring them together to explore alternative solutions and reforms to the European Union’s Common Agricultural Policy and how to redesign food systems around agroecological principles.

Alongside exploring examples of cities developing their own outstanding food policies, the project will also examine how regional sustainable food systems can revitalise rural communities.

About the Event

Rising public concern around climate change and biodiversity loss has led to increasing attention on our food system as both a cause but also a potential contributing solution to environmental breakdown. While efforts are underway to reform European food and agricultural policies in order to better protect nature and rural livelihoods, growing numbers of people are becoming actively involved in reshaping food systems at local level.

Such efforts are demonstrating a creative resurgence of ideas and practices of how we can recover the multidimensional values of food as a public good rather than allow it to remain as a means for private corporate profit, and to help reduce our own personal environmental footprint and retrieve some control over our food supply.

The event proposes that food is not only a vital source of personal well-being but offers a route toward greater citizen engagement. Growing food in cities offers numerous benefits for the urban environment and community resilience and can improve availability of fresh, nourishing produce especially for those for whom access is restricted by income. Above all, it enables us to re-establish the central purpose of a food system: to produce food sustainably to feed people adequately.

This day-long event is an opportunity to pool ideas, share experiences and celebrate the power of community in growing, cooking and eating food.

You are encouraged to book early for this event as we will restrict numbers in order to facilitate an engaged, constructive and convivial experience.


09:15 – 09:30
Gather in the Lecture Room of Nano Nagle Place

09:30 – 11:00
Two keynote presentations will address new thinking that is helping us to redesign civic food systems led by Henk Renting, Researcher and Lecturer in Urban Food Systems at AERES University of Applied Sciences, Almere, the Netherlands and Orla O’Donovan, Lecturer at the School of Applied Social Studies, University College Cork. The session will be introduced and chaired by Colin Sage, Co-Founder and former Chair of the Cork Food Policy Council.

11:00 – 12:45
In order to enable full engagement by participants this session will be organised as a World Café, and convened by Klaus Harvey of Transition Town Kinsale. Coffee and nibbles will be available and there will be short presentations as inputs to deliberations from Food Historian Regina Sexton, GIS Expert Tomás Kelly and others.

12:45 – 13:30
Report back from table hosts, discussion and elaboration of final action points.

13:30 – 14:00
Walk to St. John’s Central College, Sawmill Street, Cork (a short 5 minute walk).

14:00 – 16:00
We will join the ‘street feast’ that is being hosted by La Cocina Pública, a Chilean theatre group that will be based in the Cork South Parish neighbourhood as part of the Cork Midsummer Festival. Please note that the registration fee will include lunch here.


  • Henk Renting
    Researcher and Lecturer in Urban Food Systems,
    AERES University of Applied Sciences, Almere, The Netherlands
  • Orla O’Donovan
    Lecturer at the School of Applied Social Studies,
    University College Cork
  • Colin Sage
    Co-Founder and former Chair of the Cork Food Policy Council

La Cocina Pública / The Public Kitchen
Housed in a shipping container La Cocina Pública is a mobile kitchen that brings people together through theatre, food and dining.
Travelling from Chile through cities and neighbourhoods in Europe in search of local recipes, aromas, practices and customs, La Cocina Publica will work with Cork’s South Parish residents to share stories and food that will be enjoyed at delicious collective dining events – with Chilean and Cork artists, storytellers, singers and musicians providing you with memories and entertainment. Your ticket includes a meal, but to encourage a family-friendly atmosphere for all ages, no alcohol will be served at these events.


This event costs €20 per person (plus booking fee), which covers entrance to all events on Saturday, including morning coffee as well as lunch during the Cocina Pública street feast.

Please secure your place by booking here – early booking is RECOMMENDED as numbers will be restricted in order to facilitate an engaged, constructive and convivial experience.


Douglas St, Centre
Cork, Ireland

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