Cardinia Food Circles Project

  • The Cardinia Food Circles Collective Impact Project aims to establish a healthy, delicious, sustainable and fair food system for all Cardinia Shire residents.  
  • The project began in November 2016 as a partnership between Cardinia Shire Council and backbone partners Sustain Australia to facilitate the implementation of the Cardinia Community Food Strategy.
  • The strategy is guided by a steering committee, and key partners from local and regional health organisations, education and research institutions, food industry, community members, not-for-profit organisations and local government staff.
  • Together, we advocate and promote the shared Community Food Strategy vision and common agenda, and lead and support key actions and activities across the wider project.
  • Build a shared understanding of the Cardinia Shire food system, and its challenges and opportunities, amongst a diverse and representative group of stakeholders.
  • Establish a shared and widely understood definition and basic understanding of food literacy with shire residents and council officers.
  • Raise food literacy levels across the shire, particularly amongst young people.
  • Bring food systems-thinking into the decision making process of Councillors and Council staff, and into key Council plans and strategies.
  • Diversify food distribution and consumption in the shire, with an emphasis on fresh, seasonal and, where possible, local produce.
  • Support business innovation and local job creation in the shire’s food system.
  • Advocate to other levels of government for planning policy changes to better control the density and proximity of fast food outlets to vulnerable communities.
  • Background mapping report of the Cardinia Shire food system.
  • Creation of a food system profile for Cardinia Shire.
  • Extensive community and stakeholder engagement.
  • Formation of the Cardinia Food Movement.
  • Inaugural Cardinia Food Forum with 100 participants and an international keynote speaker.
  • Kitchen table talks and Ideas harvest to generate the Community Food Strategy.
  • Launch of the Community Grocer, an affordable pop-up fruit and veg market, in Pakenham.
  • Distribution of food literacy survey to 2000 households in partnership with Monash University.
  • Farming: The Next Gen film screening.
  • Partnering with the Foodprint Melbourne research team to advocate for a resilient city foodbowl.


Cardinia Food Circles facilitates the strategic steering committee to guide and align the delivery, and evaluation of the Cardinia Community Food Strategy

Key stakeholders represented around the strategic steering table are:

  • Cardinia Shire Council
  • Sustain: The Australian Food Network
  • Conservation Volunteers Australia
  • Garry White Foundation (Sustainable Table)
  • Hopeworks Community Solutions (Youth Food Enterprises)
  • Kooweerup Regional Health Service
  • Monash Health Community
  • Monash University (Nutrition, Dietetics and Food)
  • Rural Food Industry (Bushfire Recovery)
  • Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation
  • The Community Grocer
  • The Cardinia Food Movement representative
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