Nourish to flourish | Western Cape Government

Nourish to flourish

(Western Cape Government)

Nourish to flourish - no person should ever go hungry

No person or family should ever go hungry.

We all need to work together to ensure that everyone in the Western Cape has access to safe, healthy and nutritious food. By making sure that what and how we eat is a sustainable priority for the people of our province, we can build a future where we're able to nourish to flourish.

The Western Cape Government Strategic Framework for Household Food and Nutrition Security aims to find a good balance between social and economic interventions - by protecting communities, while also addressing the underlying issues that shape the food economy such as the way cities are developed, the way resources are managed and the access that communities have to fresh and nutritious food.

Help us to improve everyone’s access to food by sharing your comments below before 28 February 2017.

Enjoying a long and healthy life depends on having access to fresh and nutritious food

Food for thought

Food and nutrition affect the long-term wellbeing of our communities and our children. The Western Cape Government works consistently to improve the food security of its people. Each year, over 457 000 learners at 1 028 schools and 65 000 children at early childhood development facilities are fed. More than 20 000 vulnerable children and adults in the province receive specialised nutritional supplements to improve their health. Support has been provided to 103 community food gardens, 33 school food gardens, and 1 356 household food gardens for communities to grow their own food. In 2015, 1 572 emerging farmers were given the tools they need to grow their businesses.

Securing our food supply for the future of our children

Food security focuses on 3 questions:

1. How do we get food? Many people are not able to get enough food to keep them satisfied, healthy and active. Limited resources, climate change, and long distances make it difficult for people to access food. Many people cannot afford to buy healthy food, and children do not receive the nutrients their bodies need in order to grow.
2. How do we use food? The way that we choose, prepare, cook and store our food can affect our health. Unhealthy food creates an unhealthy society, which puts a lot of pressure on our health system and damages our economy.
3. How do we ensure that there's always enough food for the future? Government, the business sector and civil society must work together to protect our resources, and encourage an economy and society that allows people to access food now and in the future.

Our vision is that all residents will have access to and control over the physical, social and economic means to ensure sufficient, safe and nutritious food at all times, which meets their preferences, in order to meet the dietary requirements for a healthy life.

Each of us has a part to play in creating a sustainable supply of fresh and nutritious food

Our Nourish to Flourish programme is built on 6 pillars:

1. Food assistance

Our objective is to work towards better access to, and use of, nutritious food for children and vulnerable people by 2019.

In 2015, 17.4% of households in the Western Cape had inadequate access to food. Also, 21% of households in Cape Town, and 15%-20% of households in other Western Cape municipalities are seen as disadvantaged. Limited access to healthy food has led to many of our province’s children being overweight, stunted or underdeveloped.

Our solutions:

1. Continue with provincial interventions to assist impoverished and vulnerable people.
2. Promote the planting of household, school and community gardens.
3. Provide nutritional support to individuals at risk of malnutrition.
4. Promote, support and protect breastfeeding and improved complimentary feeding.
5. Use schools and early childhood development centres as sites of opportunity to feed children.

2. Food awareness and safety

Our objective is to work towards better food awareness, food safety, and healthier behaviour by 2019.

What we choose to eat impacts our health. In South Africa, stunting, wasting and undernutrition in young children is happening, along with increasing levels of obesity in older children and adults. Men in the Western Cape have the highest body mass index range countrywide, and the percentage of obese women in the province is higher than the national average.

How we prepare food is also important. Malnutrition is also linked to unsafe water, poor sanitation and unsafe hygiene
practices in and around our communities.

Our solutions:

1. Continue to implement programmes to empower people with information regarding nutritious and safe food, such as the WOW programme, the first 1000 days campaign, the Healthy Eating Guide, and various events to promote awareness.
2. Continue and strengthen programmes to share information regarding hygiene and water safety.

3. Food sensitive planning

Our objective is to work towards the strategic integration of the food system into development planning by 2019.

The planning system is one of the most important tools for the government to influence society. How, where and when we build our infrastructure can have a positive influence on the access, location, transport and distribution of healthy food and can make important improvements to food security.

Our solutions:

1. Ensure that the Provincial Spatial Development Framework (PSDF) takes food security into account in order to influence municipal spatial development frameworks.
2. Include and adapt the principles of food sensitive planning and design into the model zoning scheme bylaw.
3. Develop food sensitive planning and design guidelines for provincial land use management.
4. Include food sensitivity principles into current municipal assessment criteria.

4. Food resource management for the future

Our objective is to work towards the integration of climate change responses into all aspects of the food systems by 2030.

The food system and the farming sector go hand in hand. Farming, food processing and distribution are all affected by the quality of the natural environment. At the same time, the food system also places a lot of pressure on the natural environment.

Our solutions:

1. Promote a climate-resilient low-carbon agricultural sector that is productive, competitive, equitable and ecologically sustainable across the value chain.
2. Promote the sustainable use of water, soil and energy.
3. Strengthen effective climate disaster risk reduction and management for agriculture.
4. Improve food waste reduction and management.
5. Upskill farmers for sustainable farming.
6. Incorporate food sensitivity into municipal assessments.

5. Inclusive food economy

Our objective is to work towards better access to nutritious food, particularly for poor households, through the formal and informal economy.

Informal traders are an important source of affordable food to low income households. Many South Africans consume too much starch and too little fresh fruits and vegetables. Improving the ability of informal vendors to sell fruit and vegetables to low income households is a

Informal traders, small holder farmers and local markets are important to the food economy. Supporting these sectors can improve local food security and strengthen local economies.

Our solutions:

1. Introduce a model by-law for municipalities for informal food trading as well as guidelines for implementation.
2. Investigate opportunities to support local level fresh food markets in the Western Cape.
3. Investigate the impact of emerging farmers on the food system and ways to support their contribution to food
4. Support skills development in the food economy.

6. Food governance

Our objective is to work towards evidence-based integration of food security implementation and planning.

The provincial government is not the most influential stakeholder in the food system. Improving the food security of the province can only be achieved by building partnerships between government, the business sector and civil society.

Food security governance also requires the collection and analysis of data and information to understand how the food system is changing and affecting the lives of Western Cape citizens, particularly poor households.

Our solutions:

1. Strengthen the Food Security Governmental Work Group.
2. Establish a multi-stakeholder process to create public/private partnerships.
3. Develop or leverage existing monitoring and evaluation systems and research opportunities.
4. Use technology and innovation in household food security solutions.

Send us your comments

By working for healthy food, we can build happier, more productive communities BETTER TOGETHER.

The food system has lasting consequences for the development of the province, especially our economic growth, environmental resources, and health and social systems. Help us to improve everyone's access to food by reading through our framework and sharing your comments below before 28 February 2017. If you'd prefer to send us your comments by email, please mail Saretha Scott at

If you have any questions about Nourish to Flourish, you're welcome to contact Tristan Gorgens at

The content on this page was last updated on 9 December 2016