Options put to council on food planning

It would take about $15,000 a year and a person working one day a week to enable a more co-ordinated approach to ensuring the adaptability of Dunedin's food supply, Dunedin City Council staff say.

Following extensive work by the council's community resilience forum last year, the council noted in December food was a strategic opportunity for Dunedin and there was a need to improve its food supply resilience.

It also asked for a staff report in time for this week's annual plan discussions outlining what it would cost to have a more co-ordinated internal approach to food-related matters and engage with city stakeholders on the challenges, risks and opportunities in the city's food supply.

A report from the council's corporate policy team leader Maria Alieno said a number of departments interacted with food in some way, from business support to planning to protect high-quality soils.

Their activities were quite separate and co-ordinating them would require staff resource, as would engaging with external food stakeholders.

It should take a person about one day a week and could be done by existing staff from about October, but if the council wished the work to start earlier, a person would need to be hired.

A small budget, of about $15,000, would allow the stakeholder engagement to happen and be available to support community initiatives and research projects that would support the council's work.

Councillors have been asked to consider during their annual plan discussions this week four options: using existing staff resources; using existing staff resources with a new budget; employing a new person for one day a week; or employing someone and allocating a small budget.

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