Photo by Miles Willis Photography

Urban Food Awards 2020

The Mayor and London Food Link are using the 2020 Urban Food Awards to recognise the enterprises, organisations and individuals championing good food in London. This year's categories are open to a range of entries, from charities, caterers and market traders to climate friendly cafes and urban farms.  

Entries and nominations are now open for this year's awards. 

The 2020 headline category, Food for Good Champions, will recognise a multitude of people and small volunteering organisations using food to bring communities together, promote social integration and celebrate diversity. 

Thanks to sponsorship by the London Growth Hub, winners of the Super Social Enterprise, Community Market Champion and Climate Champion categories will share a prize fund of £5,000 towards training and mentoring costs

The winners will be revealed at an exclusive awards event at Mercato Metropolitano on 18 March. Find out more about this year's categories below! #UrbanFoodAwards

Award Categories

This year's award categories are:

  • Children's Food Champion: From campaigning parents and community groups, to caterers and restaurants, applications are open to everyone taking important steps to improve children's food as part of a paid or voluntary role. 


  • Climate Champion: Open to cafes and restaurants working to embed climate and nature friendly practices into their menus and ethos. This could include working toward zero waste, embracing less but better meat and dairy, and sourcing food in a nature-friendly way. In partnership with the Sustainable Restaurants Association


  • Community Market Champion: Open to any market stall holder who is working in innovative ways to bring healthy, affordable and sustainable food (particularly fresh produce) to people in a local community. 


  • Good Food for All: The focus of this category is on organisations and enterprises working to help Londoners with disabilities, and/or who are facing challenges of growing older, to enjoy access to good food. In partnership with City Harvest


  • Growing Wild: Open to urban farms and food growing projects that are enhancing nature through their growing practices and planting schemes, encouraging and promoting biodiversity and sharing their beliefs, knowledge and skills with volunteers, customers and the wider community. In partnership with Capital Growth.


  • Ocean Friendly Caterer: Open to restaurateurs and caterers working at scale or with wider influence, who can demonstrate commitment to sustainable fish and reducing plastic in the supply chain. In partnership with the Marine Conservation Society


  • Super Social Enterprise: Open to good food social enterprises providing training and experience in skills and knowledge for employment, particularly to people facing greater than average barriers to the jobs market. In partnership with the London Growth Hub.


  • Young Food Ambassador: Shining a spotlight on a young person, or small team of people, aged 25 or under who are campaigning within their school, college, university or wider community for a better food and farming system. In partnership with BiteBack 2030.

Food for Good Champions

Following the success of 2019's special Women in Food category, this year’s headline category will crown a number of Food for Good Champions, celebrating the Londoners using food to bring communities together, promote social integration and celebrate diversity in the capital. This category is open to Londoners working or volunteering alone or in small teams. 

Entry and nomination guidelines

To be eligible, entrants/nominees must be based and operate in London.  

The judges will be looking for nominations that demonstrate clear examples (backed up by evidence) of how entrants/nominees work to reduce the negative, and increase the positive, impact on the food system of what they do. 

  • Align with with Sustain’s good food guidelines operate in a demonstrably sustainable/ethical way e.g. using/supplying certified organic food, all/mainly London-grown produce, certified sustainable fish, being a fair employer and paying the London Living Wage, operating as a worker-owned cooperative, operating as a social enterprise, using/supplying less but better (certified higher welfare) meat, reducing surplus and preventing food waste etc.  Outline the wider benefits their work brings to the local community and economy
  • Contributing to the local economy and creating other social and community benefits.

Award specific guidelines

Climate Champion: Judges are looking to reward businesses that can clearly demonstrate making a positive impact on the key climate issues as they relate to cafes and restaurants, primarily less but better meat and reduction of food waste. What steps have been taken to reduce the negative impact of the menu on the planet? The judges are keen to see concrete examples to support this, such as procurement and/or sales data. What actual steps have been taken to keep food on the plate and out of the bin?   

Ocean friendly caterer: Judges are looking for businesses that are helping to tackle the crisis in our oceans by removing the most unsustainably-caught fish from menus (those that are red-rated in the Marine Conservation Society's Good Fish Guide), and are serving, promoting and celebrating fish which is certified sustainable (looking for Marine Stewardship and Aquaculture Stewardship Council ecolabels) or green rated by the Marine Conservation Society. The judges are also looking for businesses that avoid or have significantly reduced their use of single-use plastic. 


Finalists will be shortlisted from all eligible entries and nominations by a team of judges.

The judging panel will be chaired by Claire Pritchard, who is Chair of the London Food Board, a group of experts who advise the Mayor of London and the GLA on the food matters that affect Londoners.

Fellow judges include members of the Mayor of London’s food policy team, London Food Link staff, and other good food experts.

The judges' decisions are final and neither they, nor Urban Food Awards partners, will enter into correspondence about them. 

Prize Fund and Why get involved

Winners and other finalists will benefit from greater recognition of their work and achievements, including coverage in the Jellied Eel, the title for good food in London.

Thanks to sponsorship by the London Growth Hub, winners of the Super Social Enterprise, Community Market Champion and Climate Champion categories will share a prize fund of £5,000 towards training and mentoring costs

Comments from past winners about the benefits of getting involved include:

"Winning the Super Social Enterprise award gave the Bread N utter team a fabulous boost, helping us raise our profile and kudos within the industry. It has helped reinforce our belief that we are doing the right thing!" Bread N Butter (2019)

"The award not only gave us the feeling of recognition but also the opportunity to share our achievements. It also motivated us to extend our composting area and increase our training for this year". Calthorpe Project (2019)

Everyone who makes a nomination will be entered in a draw to win a pair of tickets to the awards event.

Key dates

  • 21 January: Nominations/entries open
  • 20 February: Nominations/entries close. Nominees may be contacted to confirm the details that have been submitted about them
  • Early March: Finalists will be contacted and invited to the awards ceremony
  • 18 March: Winners announced at invitation-only awards ceremony at Mercato Metropolitano

Entering or making a nomination

Visit the Urban Food Awards 2020 webpage to enter or make a nomination! 

If you have any queries about the Urban Food Awards please email [email protected] 

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