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Hull wins Veg Cities prize

Hull wins veg city prize 2022

Hull wins Peas Please Veg City Prize 2022!

Hull Food Partnership joins national winners announced on 18th May.

  • The city has added its weight to the retailers representing 92% of the food market who are now signed up to the Peas Please pledge to increase veg consumption 
  • Only one in four adults is eating enough veg to stay healthy. Almost a third of 5 to 10 year olds year-olds are not getting one veg portion a day 
  • All Peas Please winners committed to the challenge to give everyone a good diet with a goal of three billion veg portions to be served or sold by 2023   

In the first live ceremony for two years, the Food Foundation’s executive director Anna Taylor presented awards to the seven category winners of the 2022 Peas Please Prizes at a ceremony in the Yorkshire heartland of Leeds.  

Hull Food Partnership won this year’s Peas Please Veg City prize after two years as runner up. The prize was awarded for the team’s recruitment of 35 local partner organisations who have produced a total of 48 pledges to raise veg consumption.  

“Hull Food Partnership is delighted to be nominated for the third year running for the Peas Please Veg Cities Award, and we are very happy to be included in such good company with Veg Cities from across the UK sharing their expertise and enthusiasm for all things veg,” said Darren Squires, Hull’s Veg Cities campaign co-ordinator. “We could never achieve the things we do without the committed members of our Food Partnership and Grower’s Network. They go out in all weathers to support community veg growing and put on events to encourage people to eat and share more veg. They are the driving force behind Hull’s success and we salute every one of them.“ 

Sofia Parente, Sustainable Food Places Policy and Campaigns Coordinator at Veg Cities was equally delighted by Hull’s success: “After two years as runner-up, it is fantastic to see Hull Food Partnership win the Peas Please Veg Cities prize this year,” she said. “They have really demonstrated the impact of collaborating with council, food businesses, voluntary and community sector organisations. They are in a perfect position to ensure these actions are embedded in the city’s long term food strategy.” 

Now in its fourth reporting year the Peas Please initiative has over 100 pledgers from across the food sector and including 92% of retailers who have all made pledges to promote and encourage people to eat more veg.    

The seven awards all celebrate the achievements of imaginative businesses that are leading the way with schemes to drive up vegetable consumption. 

Since the Peas Please initiative launched in 2017 food industry pledgers have delivered an additional 636 million portions of vegetables into food systems across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  

But the 2021 Peas Please progress report released at the end of last year, shows a serious deficit in veg consumption, with less than a quarter of adults eating enough vegetables a day, and almost a third of children eating less than the equivalent of one portion a day.  

Research has shown that such poor diets are linked to almost 18,000 premature deaths a year in the UK. 

“We are delighted by the huge growth in industry support for the Peas Please project,” said Food Foundation executive director Anna Taylor. “More and more businesses are recognising they have a crucial role in tackling the poor nutrition crisis which is causing an epidemic of obesity and ill health. It has been a particular pleasure and a privilege to work with the forward-thinking organisations that have won this year’s prizes.”

New Pledgers join the campaign 

Morrisons is also a recent recruit to the scheme and has pledged to support more advertising and promotion of veg both in-store and online, at the same time as working to increase the amount of veg in its new and reformulated own-brand products.  Other major supermarkets are also making significant new commitments to Peas Please, while Aldi, Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Waitrose are well on the way to meeting their targets. 

Sainsbury’s has become the Peas Please Pledger Champion for the second year running with a variety of new initiatives.

Mark Newbold, the corporate social responsibility manager at Lidl, has been singled out for the Peas Please Individual Champion award, in recognition of his personal drive to support the target. 

Hull Food Partnership, twice runner up, has this year won first prize in the Veg City category, following the team’s triumph in recruiting 35 local organisations who between them have made a total of 48 veg pledges to date. 

Blackpool catering services have picked up the Veg-O-Meter prize for achieving a 171% increase in vegetables included in school holiday meals.  

More organisations are joining Peas Please every month. Together we aim to transform Britain into a healthy nation of healthy eaters. 

Peas Please Prize Winners in full: 

Peas Please Pledger Champion:  This award recognises organisations who have effectively implemented Peas Please pledges as a core part of their business proposition, including Peas Please in their company reporting or linking their pledges to company and staff performance appraisal.  

Winner: Sainsbury’s.  

Sainsbury’s have renewed their pledge to increase the proportion of total vegetable sales by 1% of tonnage, and are encouraging customers to increase veg consumption with various schemes including the offer of competitively-priced  ’Imperfectly Tasty’ and ‘Greengrocer’ fruit and vegetables, to ensure that fresh produce is accessible to all customers.  

Runner up: Henderson SPAR NI 


Peas Please Individual Champion:  Recognising an outstanding individual contribution by a staff member within one of the participating pledger organisations which has given inspired leadership to their organisation’s Peas Please pledge. 

Winner: Mark Newbold, Lidl 

Mark engaged with Peas Please and strengthened Lidl’s commitment to promote and drive up veg sales. Lidl is also one of the first retailers to offer new transparent reporting of such sales. Mark also actively looked for ways to support the government’s Healthy Start initiative and engaged with the Food Foundation’s Veg Advocate Dialogues. 

Runner up: Grace Ricotti, Aldi  


Veg City Prize: Celebrating effective integrated place-based approaches to increasing veg uptake at a local level for cities participating in the Veg Cities campaign 

Winner: Hull  

Hull Food Partnership has worked with the city council, voluntary and community sector organisations and food businesses. A total of 35 organisations have made an impressive 48 extra veg pledges, and the scheme is continuing to grow. 

Runner-up: Leeds  


Veg-O-Meter Prize: Rewarding the biggest percentage increase in vegetable portions sold or served by the pledgers between 2019/20 and 2020/21 reporting cycles 

Winner: Blackpool catering services  

Achieved a 171% increase in veg consumption by implementing new menus with more vegetables and increasing vegetable intake within school holidays meal provision. 

Runner up: Giraffe  


Peas Please Good Society Prize: Championing efforts to improve access to quality veg through farming innovation, better school food, and the Healthy Start scheme . 

Winner: Food and Fun, Wales 

Food and Fun is a school-based education programme providing food and nutrition education, physical activity, enrichment sessions and healthy meals to children in areas of social deprivation during the school summer holidays in Wales. The Food and Fun Menu Principles ensure a minimum of two separate portions of vegetables and/or salad are served with every lunch meal. 

Runner-up: Bags of Taste  


Peas Please Rising Star: Recognising new Peas Please pledgers who have made effective and ambitious pledges to help everyone eat more veg.  

Winner: TastEd 

TastEd have engaged with 100 schools to help deliver taste education lessons and provide teacher training and resources so fresh fruit and vegetable can be brought into lessons. This has been shown to inspire children to use all their senses, encouraging them to explore and then choose to eat fruit and vegetables. 


Peas Please Innovation Prize: Recognising inspirational and innovative schemes to support organisational Peas Please pledges and the overall mission of boosting veg consumption. (Monitoring and evaluation by entrants of their own schemes is also considered by judges of this category) 

Winner: GroentenFruit Huis  

This company transitioned in-store nudging experiments into an online shopping environment during the covid pandemic. The group that was nudged brought 7% more vegetables and 6% more fruit. Nudges used included a fruit and vegetable meter giving shoppers’ baskets a high or low score. 

Runner up: Tesco 

Read the Peas Please Progress report for 2021 here.

About Peas Please 

A trail-blazing initiative focused specifically on veg, Peas Please aims to bring together farmers, retailers, restaurant chains, caterers, processors and government departments with a common goal of making it easier for everyone to eat veg. Committed to collaborative working, Peas Pease is led by project partners the Food Foundation, Nourish Scotland, Food Sense Wales, Food NI, and Belfast Food Network who have secured engagement and support from over 150 organisations in cities, business and Governments across the UK to bring about change to the whole food system to improve people’s health and wellbeing.

For more information about the Peas Please, please visit

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