Real Bread Campaign

Real Bread Campaign
Jim Bennett

There has been a quiet, growing movement in Scotland over the past few years for real bread supported by the Real Bread Campaign. Community owned bakeries have sprung up all over Scotland, including the newest social enterprise bakery, the Freedom Bakery based in Low Moss prison and the development of a Scottish community led supply chain for real bread led by social enterprise Scotland The Bread. The idea is that bread should be baked in a continuous process in one place from traditional ingredients only.

However, the campaign for real bread in Scotland received a significant jolt last week, through, of all things, the Greek Bail out. Currently, 1-3% of Greek bakery products are supplied by industrial bakeries; the remainder by small, intensively staffed artisan bakers. In the EU it’s an average of 45% supply by industrial bakers and in Scotland 90%+. 


As part of the bail out deal, the EU are requiring Greece to open up the bakery market to "competition". Specifically, the very definition of a bakery as a place where “bakers” mix ingredients, knead dough and bake loaves from scratch, as opposed to a “bread point of sale” that might merely heat up frozen dough or just sell prebaked loaves, is to be changed. Small local bakeries are to be wiped out, undercut by industrial giants and superstore provision. These Aldi/Lidl/Tesco “bakeries” are often referred to in the real bread world as “tanning parlours” for dough.


“The benefit from abolishing the definition would be the enhancement of competition by creating quality differentiations and by offering a broader choice to consumers,” according to the OECD. 
What that means is that the EU not only want to cut Greek pensions, privatise their assets and take control of the economy, they also want to feed the Greeks pap instead of real bread. It’s a sobering time for real food advocates.


This piece was notified by reader Jim Bennett