25 Nov, 2014 Last updated: 04 Mar, 2015

We're pleased to announce further VicHealth investment in the two Healthy Eating Seed Challenge winners, 3000acres & Open Food Network, which sees our support extending until June 2015.

The investment will accelerate their progression to viable business models whilst delivering new solutions to improving the supply, access and culture of fruit and vegetables in Victoria.

Here’s a summary of what the two projects have achieved over the past 12 months:

3000acres

3000acres is improving access to underutilised land for the purpose of food growing, with the aim of transforming Melbourne into a fresh food city with healthier, more resilient communities. Key outputs in their first 12 months supported by the Seed Challenge investment include the establishment of pilot gardens on vacant or underutilised land, and a website and online toolkit to support people who want to grow foods to connect with others who hold the keys to vacant land. 

The clear impact of 3000acres is increasing awareness of the importance and value of food growing within the city and the creation and strengthening of communities around those gardens. The initiative has generated strong interest from traditional and social media, landowners, enthusiastic growers and volunteers.
 

Open Food Network

Open Food Network is an online marketplace that makes it easy to find, buy and sell local and source-identified food. The ultimate goal is affordable quality food to eaters and a fair price for farmers and. Key outputs in the last 12 months supported by the Seed Challenge investment include moving to open beta software informed by trialling the marketplace software with food hubs and increase in monthly sales of healthy foods. 

The clear impact of Open Food Network is supporting new fresh food supply chains, which have demonstrated their ability to supply foods that are more affordable than supermarket prices, and a shift in culture that supports and legitimises these food supply chains as alternatives to mainstream distributors. Open Food Network’s concept is generating a broad support base including international interest and a very successful crowdfunding campaign raising over $35,000.