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Food Issues Census 2

In 2011, the Food Ethics Council researched and published the first Food Issues Census. The response was overwhelmingly positive. Five years on, the Census is being relaunched to assess how the landscape has changed.

The Food Issues Census remains the only large-scale survey to examine UK civil society capacity for work on food. The funding landscape in 2016 looks very different to the one in 2011. There has been some success in getting food and farming on the radar of more funders, but overall its profile remains relatively low. Understanding the changing context – where current capacity on food and farming is, how that has changed, how funding on food compares to 2011 and which issues are getting most attention now compared to five years ago – will be invaluable to funders, potential funders and CSOs.

Feedback from participants in the 2011 survey included:

“Joined up research by multiple donors such as this is very positive.”

“Look at the graphics in the report – it makes the complexity easy to get across – interesting, slick and novel – great stuff – inspiring”

“This is a great initiative...” and

“Thank you for giving our organisation the chance to say these things. I hope it helps to change direction of our food and farming funding.”

To that end, the Food Ethics Council is producing a second Food Issues Census. This project is undertaking a survey focused on capacity: identifying how much CSO effort is devoted to working on particular issues and objectives. The survey includes questions that allow the analysis to provide a foundation for discussion and thinking about strategies.

Such a census provides an invaluable, trusted reference point for funders and CSOs. It helps funders target their funding strategies in relation to food. It helps CSOs target their activities more effectively. It also supports advocacy by funders and CSOs to assist in securing fund growth for work on (sustainable) food and farming.

If your organisation works on food and farming issues and we haven’t been in touch to ask you to give us your views, please get in touch with us at

To read more about our original survey, please visit

This project is kindly supported by:


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