It is thought that there are currently around 6.5 million adults who follow either a vegetarian, pescatarian or vegan lifestyle in the United Kingdom, but there are predicted to be 12 million more people following these lifestyles by the year 2020. If you’re keen to avoid supermarket chains, then you might consider visiting your local market or high street to complete your weekly food shop and buy some fresh food to consume. But have you ever wondered which UK cities are leading the way with their availability of fresh produce?
Combined with an increased sense of ethical consumerism and health awareness, the United Kingdom has seen a significant growth of organic and premium types of fresh food and a greater demand for fresh fruit and vegetables. A study conducted by Leisure has analyzed a range of fresh food suppliers, including the number of butchers, greengrocers, fishmongers, bakeries and farmers markets per capita, to reveal the United Kingdom’s top ten fresh food capitals.
Below you will find the list of Top ten fresh food capitals of the United Kingdom:
|Rank||City||Overall Fresh Food Index Score|
|6||Newcastle (upon Tyne)||53|
|8||Kingston upon Hull||50|
*For this study, the Fresh Food Index was created by measuring factors such as the number of butchers, farmers markets, greengrocers, fishmongers and bakeries in the top 50 cities in the UK.
Average scores of UK regions for fresh food outlets per capita*:
*calculated from top 25 ranked cities. **Values in per capita average score.
Now, as per the study, York crowns as the number one fresh food capital of the UK. with an overall score of 69 out of a 100. With an approximate population of 153, 717, the city has 24 butchers, 47 bakeries and 15 greengrocers, as well as three farmers markets that represent a good source of fresh produce. Vegan, vegetarian or just trying to cut down on your meat consumption? York really has 15 great options for you. Followed next, Brighton is the highest ranked Southern city in second place overall, providing its residents with great access to fishmongers and farmers markets. For the best access to fresh fish, it is no surprise that the coastal city of Brighton came out top with seven fishmongers in total. Brighton also has 14 butchers, 22 bakeries and five farmers markets.
Representing Scotland, Glasgow ranks in at a fourth place, with over 129 butchers, 113 bakeries and 25 greengrocers, whilst Northern Ireland has two representatives in the top 20 – Londonderry in 12th place and Belfast in 18th. Meat lovers can rejoice in Manchester, which is the UK city with the highest number of butchers per capita (99 butchers in total) – the highest number per capita for both outlets.
The northern region of the UK is leading the way with access to fresh foods, with four out of five top-scoring cities based in the north including- York (69), Manchester (66), Glasgow (60) and Chester (57). However, if it’s the lure of a well-stocked farmers market that gets your culinary juices flowing, then the residents of Cambridge have plenty of options to choose from, with seven farmers markets overall – the highest number of markets per capita of all the cities analyzed.
London ranks in at a surprising 45th place, despite having over 118 farmer’s markets, 225 fishmongers and 67 bakeries offering fresh and local produce to its residents. Yet the population in London is higher in comparison, means that it has significantly fewer fresh food outlets per capita. Overall, the North of England is comparably better than the South of England for its access to butchers, fishmongers, and bakeries, whereas the South has been revealed to have better access to farmers markets and greengrocers.
The health and environmental benefits of buying local, fresh produce are so clear, that it’s great to see so many local food stores around the UK for residents to shop in. With a rise in people becoming more environmentally conscious and wanting to know the source of their food, shoppers are turning to their local high street and food markets. So, whether you are looking for a cake or loaf of bread from their local bakery, or want to purchase the items you need to create a family favorite dish, the cities of the UK have plenty of options. The easiest diet is, you know, eat vegetables and fresh food. Just a really sensible, healthy and balanced diet that when you start enjoying eating food, you will no longer count calories.
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