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#friskmat – Food Pharmacy

#friskmat

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Happy Birthday to #friskmat!

Today is an exciting day! Today marks one year since our food-for-wellness initiative – #friskmat, became a non-profit!

A lot has happened throughout that last year, some of it we have reported on before, but among the highlights of the year is a welcomed surprise we got as of recently. The non-profit received its first large donation! Previously we have sustained the initiative on membership fees, crowdfunding, follower donations as well as small company donations. All of these contributions have been immensely supportive for us in getting the non-profit not only up but running too – they are what made it possible for us to arrive at this point today where we can share with you that we have received a 1 million kronor donation from af Jochnick Foundation! That money will be used to create the digital platform for information exchange between commercial kitchens. An exciting opportunity to say the least!

This platform of information exchange will help to build a community among commercial kitchen staff members. The intention is that, through this community, knowledge will be accessible, particularly within the public food sectors. And, that this information exchange will become a tool to raise quality and standards across a broad spectrum of commercial kitchens. The content will be moderated by dietitians and other professionals within the field. 

Resources for those who work in a majority of commercial kitchens e.g., school cafeterias and hospital kitchens, are in short. Those who prepare and serve the food in these commercial kitchens often lack nutrition education and knowledge of how food influences our health. 

By creating this free platform we hope to develop a grassroots initiative that can not only provide this education but support commercial kitchen staff in their rolls and make their jobs easier.

Think of it like a “Food 52 – for commercial kitchens”, plus a whole lot more! Our ambitions for the platform are: a recipe database that also takes into consideration, budgeting, nutrition and sustainability. As well as developing digital meeting spaces, editorials about successful stories, ready to go “copy-paste” purchasing list, procurement tips and tricks and last but not least, courses (developed by dietitians) pertaining to nutrition and the correlations between food and wellness.

Hipp hipp hurray!

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Thanks Almedalen!

Today we’re handing the keyboard over to our art director, Anna. She’ll be sharing more of the juicy details from our happenings last week that you may have seen on insta.

My brain is finally sifting through all the information it inundated with last week. For the second year in a row, we were in Almedalen with our non-profit initiative #friskmat – which during the past year has become a non-profit association that you can become a member of. (friskmat translated means “wellness food”) This year’s visit looked quite different from last year since this time we arranged both mingle and a breakfast seminar. A lesson we rookies picked up from last year was that the biggest takeaway from this event was the creating and strengthening of new contacts. So this year, the focus was on meetings, networking and information gathering (…as well as some tossing around of beach balls of course).

 

The association is currently working on two main things. The first is to drive public opinion on the importance of nutritious, good and appetizing food in the public sector to counter lifestyle-related diseases. If you follow the association on instagram, you have seen how diligent we have been in writing articles for the past nine months. We can proudly state that more than 90 articles have been published. The other thing we do is lay the groundwork to be able to build a community for the grassroots work within public food sectors. We dream of a place where school cooks, nurses, in-home care staff and kitchen assistants – basically anyone who works in public sector food – can gather and receive education, inspiration and go on to share their knowledge with colleagues all around the country. And HOLY GUACAMOLE what positive responses we’ve received from professional kitchens on that idea! We also received some great input regarding that work! We are so excited about continuing! Can’t write enough exclamation marks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

On Tuesday morning we also held a round table together with Generation Pep based on the PepReport 2019 which they released earlier this spring. The issue we took up at breakfast in Rosa Gården (thank you Project MatLust for letting us take up space in your garden) was “How can society help children and young people to make more healthy choices?”.  Sitting around the table was a very competent team with a lot of sharp people gathered together. 

In summary, there was a great consensus that the solution lies primarily in more knowledge, mainly among parents and educators, but also in ensuring that the unhealthy choices are not made so readily available to children. As Generation Pep’s report shows, 98% of the children know what choices are in their best interest, yet only 2 out of 10 actually get enough fruit and vegetables on a daily basis.

All participants in the conversation were to define a task for themselves, something they can do to contribute to a positive behavior change. We’ll then follow up a year from now. Some of the tasks among us are as such – Anna-Karin from Sweden’s National Food Administration chose to start a review of the country’s school cafeterias and what they offer. Fredrik at Capio will work to get information about the importance of healthy eating from childrens very beginnings out to the parents of the 65,000 small children who are listed in their pediatric care centers. And Mats and Ulrika plan to organize a number of seminars in the Parliament throughout the year to create awareness among their Parliament colleagues about the urgent need to lift diet as part of preventive health care.

Pretty cool right? For heaven’s sake, things are really gonna happen now!

Here in the picture you can see enthusiasts Catharina and Frida with me at the event. Catharina and Frida are true rock stars who work with this completely voluntarily – what would we be without you?!!!!

Yeah so, as I mentioned earlier, my brain has finally begun to wind down after all of this excitement and yet what I’ve mentioned here is just a small part of the amazing things we conjured up. We are so looking forward to transforming this experience into practical work in the coming autumn.

But first – a little summer vacation!

You’re more than welcome to follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

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Greetings From Almedalen!

You’ve probably heard us talking about our Swedish food revolution #sjukmat, and our wish to contribute to better food in hospitals, preschools, schools and elderly care. In order to focus on the solution and not the problem, we have recently changed the hashtag to #friskmat, which translates as “healthy food” in English.

In our part of the world, lifestyle-related diseases are quickly becoming a major public health concern. There’s been an alarming increase in cancer, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and preventing these diseases will require changes in behaviors related to physical activity and diet.

Luckily, people are starting to pay more and more attention to the relationship between food and health. And the availability of healthy foods is one of several factors that can contribute to better eating habits and positive health outcomes. We’re very lucky to live in a country like Sweden, however, the food served in our hospitals, preschools, schools and elderly care is loaded with sugars and empty calories. We believe that the Swedish Government should lead by example and ensure that the food we serve to patients, kids and elderly is both healthy and nutritious.

If you follow us on Instagram, you may have seen us talking about taking our food revolution to Almedalen, also known as Politician’s Week in Sweden. The event, which kicked off three days ago in the medieval city of Visby on the island of Gotland, is an annual event with speeches, seminars and other political activities. Almedalen translates as “elm valley” in English, and it’s the name of the park in Visby where Sweden’s party leaders hold their speeches each night.

The Almedalen Week is one of the most important forums in Swedish politics. It’s a great opportunity to share ideas, discuss politics, socialize, and meet representatives from Swedish and international organizations, as well as the major political parties in Sweden.

This year, Almedalen Week celebrates its 50th anniversary. It started in 1968, when former Swedish Social Democratic Prime Minister Olof Palme spoke from the back of a lorry. He and his family used to spend their summers on Gotland. Now, 50 years later, the event has grown much larger and during Almedalen, Visby is packed with hordes of journalists, lobbyists, politicians and organizations.

Thanks to contributions from private individuals as well as large corporations, Food Pharmacy is able to visit Almedalen this year to spread the word about #friskmat. If you’re here, come visit us tomorrow: Mellangatan 15, Visby.

Thank you for supporting #friskmat. Thank you for your generous donations, and for helping us spread the word. Together we can make a change for the better. Let’s build a healthy and sustainable future for us and our future generations.

You’re more than welcome to follow us on Facebook and Instagram

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A Shift in Focus

In January, we started a Swedish food revolution. A revolution that we hoped would generate dialog and debate, and eventually contribute to better food in Swedish hospitals, preschools, schools and elderly care.

One of the things we knew from the beginning that we wanted to do was to visit the office of the Minister for Health and Social Affairs in Sweden, Annika Strandhäll. Two days ago, we met up with her and recorded an interview for our Swedish podcast. All Swedish parties agree that public health must become a political priority. Strandhäll was honest and said that unfortunately, whenever an issue needs a long-term solution and not a short-term one, it’s often not a top priority amongst politicians. However, she agreed that we need to invest in preventive measures in order to prevent a continued increase in lifestyle-related diseases.

Starting today, our food revolution #sjukmat will focus on the solution and not the problem. There are so many great and ambitious chefs and cooks out there, who make delicious, healthy and nutritious meals for Swedish hospitals, preschools, schools and elderly care. Let’s shift our focus to them and let them lead the way. When you lead by example, you create a vision of what is possible for others.

We’re sure you know some of these role models. There are many of them and they’re such an inspiration to all of us. Healthy cooking doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. If they can do it, anyone can. Please, continue to share your stories and inspire others.

You’re more than welcome to follow us on Facebook and Instagram

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