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Stratkit develops recommendations on Sustainable and Healthy School Food Procurement

22 December 2021

The StratKIT project has developed eight recommendations on Sustainable and Healthy School Food Procurement for national and EU policy makers as part of the Procura+ City Interest Group on School Food Procurement. These recommendations support the EU Farm to Fork Strategy and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The recommendations are based on the views and experiences of a number of local and national experts, the policy advocacy work of the EU Food Policy Council and further research. ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is the main author.

Food is a central element in our lives and it plays an especially crucial role in the quality of our children’s lives and their growth. As kids spend most of their time at school, school food procurement should be at the top of the priority lists for policy making. Healthy and sustainable diets and lifestyles should be rights granted to every child to reach their full potential. However, most European schools base their purchasing decisions on the cheapest price only, leaving limited margin for environmental and social sustainability.

Considering that today’s food systems account for 21-37% of total greenhouse gases (IPCCC, 2019) and are a primary cause of environmental degradation, socio-economic and health inequalities, it is the policy makers’ duty to address this issue. The EU’s position of the EU Farm to Fork Strategy recognizes the relevant role of public food procurement can play in supporting a food systems transition. The Stratkit project has developed its recommendations within this context. Their core elements are:

  1. Establishing a favourable policy framework
  2. Integrating national health/nutrition dietary guidelines
  3. Creating minimum mandatory public procurement criteria for school food embracing sustainability and health
  4. Restructuring public procurement to create and maximising synergies
  5. Fostering cooperation from farm to fork with and among small-scale farmers and social economy enterprises
  6. Boosting local and regional development through sustainable and healthy food procurement
  7. Encouraging and enabling education about food systems and healthy diets to be included in school curricula
  8. Channeling resources to help bridge gaps

The Recommendations on Sustainable and Healthy School Food Procurement can be downloaded here

Big Buyers approaching market to achieve zero-emission construction sites

6 December 2021

On 1 December, ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability organised a market dialogue event for public procurers across Europe within the European Commission’s Big Buyers for Climate and Environment Initiative, taking place in the City of Oslo (Norway). It focused on innovative solutions to tackle emissions from construction works and convened market representatives from the Machinery, Contracting and Energy & technology fields for in-person networking and exchange. The public procurers gathered valuable market intelligence on the state of the art, remaining barriers and suitable actions to accelerate the transition to emission-free construction works. The market dialogue further conveyed the aggregated ambition and demand of the Big Buyers working group (17 European public authorities) to principal market actors in the EU construction industry.

Representatives from the Procura+ participants Oslo and Copenhagen presented their approach on zero-emission construction sites to suppliers, including the strategies used to pilot and scale up the use of fossil-free and emission-free machinery on public construction sites. The C40 Clean Construction Program was also presented to demonstrate the global dimension of the trend towards emission-free construction works.

Afterwards, suppliers had the chance to pitch their current market capacity and innovation for emission-free construction solutions. MGF (the Norwegian Construction Machine Manufacturers Association) accompanied by Rosendal, Volvo, Poncat and Nasta started with the state of the market for emission-free machinery in Norway, followed by CECE (the European Construction Machine Manufacturers Association), on decarbonising construction machinery from a European perspective. Veidekke and Nordkysten respectively introduced a Norwegian and a Danish contractor’s perspective, demonstrating the multiple benefits on worker health, noise, and even construction timelines that led to their organisations interest in emission-free solutions. FIEC (the European Construction Industry (Contractor) Federation) provided insights in the European policy perspective of fossil-free construction sites, while Moog Construction focused on high performance Zero-Emission vehicles and automation to increase productivity on sites. Ballard Power Systems Europe and SuperCharge concluded the round of pitches with their presentations on innovative solutions for supplying power to zero emission construction sites.

A panel discussion on opportunities and challenges for zero-emission construction sites in Europe rounded up the plenary programme. 

The market dialogue ended with lively group discussions between buyers and suppliers on the enabling framework for emission-free construction in Europe as well as technology and innovation for zero-emission solutions.

In 2022, the zero-emission construction sites working group will continue to jointly engage market stakeholders, work together to align their procurement procedures, and will collaborate to deliver outcomes that serve to share their learnings with other procurers.

Danish, Dutch and Spanish public buyers win 2021 Procura+ Awards

25 November 2021

The winners of the 2021 Procura+ Awards were announced on 23 November in a virtual awards ceremony, live streamed on YouTube. The Province of Zeeland in the Netherlands won in the category “Procurement Initiative of the Year", while the cities of Copenhagen and Odense (Denmark) won “Sustainable Procurement of the Year”. The categories “Innovation Procurement of the Year” and “Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT" both saw Spanish winners: Santiago de Compostela City Council and Murcia Health Services, respectively.

The Province of Zeeland won “The Procurement Initiative of the Year” for its commitment to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with each purchase it makes in the period 2021-2024. Based on existing policy goals, ability to monitor progress, and in alignment with local initiatives, this work focuses on seven SDGs. For each of these seven goals, concrete impact targets were embedded in the province's Sustainable Procurement Plan 2021-2024, and monitored results will be shared on their sustainable procurement platform.

“Sustainable Procurement of the Year” winners Copenhagen & Odense also used the SDGs as a guide. Copenhagen applied an SDG tool developed by the City of Odense to help suppliers identify the SDGs they are contributing to during market dialogue exercises, and to provide a framework for tenders. The city used this tool to introduce further social and environmental considerations into its food procurement.

Santiago de Compostela City Council won “Innovation Procurement of the Year” for using innovation procurement to develop innovative solutions to improve services to citizens, while respecting the complex and specific needs encountered as a World Heritage City. Three challenges in particular were identified: municipal solid waste (MSW) management, last mile logistic services, and ornamental lighting solutions which enhance the value of heritage while saving energy.

Finally, in the category “Outstanding Procurement in ICT”, the winner was Murcia Health Service. Murcia was part of the European project InDemand which brought together procurers from three different regions to a new co-creation model (InDemand) to improve communication between doctors and epilepsy patients. Murcia Health Services led one of the 22 innovation projects that have tested this model, leading to a 50% increase in patient satisfaction and a quality of life improvement of 2.5 points.

During the ceremony the finalists in each four categories were also acknowledged. These were as follows:

  • “Procurement Initiative of the Year” - the City of Helsinki (Finland) – ICLEI Member (Towards carbon neutral municipalities and regions using carbon footprint criteria to promote sustainable public procurement),
  • “Sustainable Procurement of the Year” – Dinan Agglomeration (France) (Low environmental impact cleaning services)
  • “Innovation Procurement of the Year” – Supreme Audit Office City of Prague (Czech Republic) (Building net-zero energy innovation through procurement in construction in the centre of Prague)
  • “Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT” – Barcelona Provincial Council (Spain) (Procurement of innovation to improve telecare services)

In the category “Sustainable Procurement of the Year”, there was also an honorable mention for the South Moravian Region (Czech Republic) identifying the need to build a new sanitarium for children with respiratory diseases challenged the market to be as aesthetic, user-friendly, and energy-efficient as possible.

The jury for this years’ Procura+ Awards comprised of Katharina Knapton-Vierlich, Head of Unit, Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, European Commission; Erika Bozzay, Senior Policy Advisor, OECD; Johanna Enberg, Strategist Innovation Procurement, Swedish Competence Centre for Innovation Procurement; and Mark Hidson, Global Director, ICLEI's Sustainable Procurement Centre.

The Procura+ Awards are an initiative of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, in cooperation with the EU-funded Procure2Innovate project. The awards reward successful, already running, sustainable and innovative public procurements. The application period for the 2022 Awards will open soon. The 2021 awards ceremony was held online and can be viewed here.

More details on the procurement initiatives of this year’s winners and finalists can be found on the Procura+ website.

Save the Date! Procura + Awards ceremony to take place on 23 November

23 November 2021

The 2021 Procura + Awards winners will be revealed in an online ceremony on 23 November 2021 (10:00 – 11:30 CET), to be live-streamed on YouTubeYou can watch the ceremony here.

The Procura + Awards, an initiative of ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, in cooperation with the EU-funded Procure2Innovate project, reward successful, already running, sustainable and innovative public procurements. Public authorities compete in four different categories: Procurement Imitative of the Year, Innovation Procurement of the Year, Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT and Sustainable Procurement of the Year.

In the category ‘Procurement Initiative of the Year’ the finalists competing for the Award are the Province of Zeeland (the Netherlands) and the City of Helsinki (Finland). The former is praised for using the SDG’s as the compass of all its purchases, while the Finnish capital is using carbon footprint criteria to promote sustainable public procurement, aiming to take into account the various climate impacts of procurement.

The Supreme Audit Office of the City of Prague (Czech Republic) is a finalist in the category ‘Innovation Procurement of the Year’ for including Building Information Modeling (BIM) in its tender documents to build its first permanent seat with the lowest appropriate life-cycle costs. It is joined by the Santiago de Compostela City Council (Spain) which showed it can use procurement to develop innovative solutions for its citizens, while respecting the complex and specific needs of being a World Heritage City.

In the category ‘Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT’ two Spanish authorities are competing for the win. Murcia Health Service (Murcia) used a co-creation model to improve communication between doctors and epilepsy patients, bringing together procurers from three different regions (Paris, Murcia, Oulu) via the European project InDemand. The Barcelona Provincial Council used innovation procurement to improve its telecare services. The tender identified the challenges, but left it up to the bidders to decide how to address them.

Finally, in the category ‘Sustainable Procurement of the Year’, the City of Copenhagen (Denmark) introduced social and environmental considerations into its food procurement, guided by the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The Agglomeration of Dinan (France) created a tender for cleaning services, aiming to not harm the environment, support access to employment and to enable companies of different sizes to apply. They are joined by the South Moravian Region (Czech Republic), which identified the need to build a new sanitarium for children with respiratory diseases and challenged the market with the ambition of making it as aesthetic, user-friendly, and energy-efficient as possible.

The entries for the 2021 Procura+ Awards were assessed by a jury of four procurement experts and policy makers. They are:

  • Erika Bozzay, Senior Policy Adviser at the Infrastructure and Public Procurement Division, OECD
  • Johanna Enberg, Strategist Innovation Procurement, National Agency for Public Procurement, Sweden
  • Katharina Knapton-Vierlich, Head of Unit, Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, European Commission
  • Mark Hidson, Global Director ICLEI's Sustainable Procurement Centre

The jury will reveal its winners on 23 November. The online ceremony will take place form 10:00 – 11:30 (CET).

More details on each of this year’s finalists can be found on the Procura + website. There you will also find more information about the winners from previous years.

The Procura + Awards Ceremony will be live-streamed on ICLEI's YouTube channel. Register here to receive the YouTube link shortly before the event.

2021 Procura + Award finalists unveiled

28 September 2021

The jury of the 2021 Procura + Awards has revealed the nine finalists for this year. The Procura + Awards, an ICLEI Europe initiative, supported by the EU-funded Procure2Innovate project, recognise excellence in sustainable procurement.

In the category ‘Procurement Initiative of the Year’ the jury has picked the Province of Zeeland (the Netherlands) and the City of Helsinki (Finland). The former is praised for using the SDG’s as the compass of all its purchases, while the Finnish capital is using carbon footprint criteria to promote sustainable public procurement, aiming to take into account the various climate impacts of procurement.

The Supreme Audit Office of the City of Prague (Czech Republic) is a finalist in the category ‘Innovation Procurement of the Year’ for including Building Information Modeling (BIM) in its tender documents to build its first permanent seat with the lowest appropriate life-cycle costs. It is joined by the Santiago de Compostela City Council (Spain) which showed it can use procurement to develop innovative solutions for its citizens, while respecting the complex and specific needs of being a World Heritage City.

In the category ‘Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT’ two Spanish authorities are competing for the win. 
Murcia Health Service (Murcia)
used a co-creation model to improve communication between doctors and epilepsy patients, bringing together procurers from three different regions (Paris, Murcia, Oulu) via the European project InDemand. The Barcelona Provincial Council used innovation procurement to improve its telecare services. The tender identified the challenges but left it up to the bidders to decide how to address them.

Finally, in the category ‘Sustainable Procurement of the Year’, the City of Copenhagen (Denmark) introduced social and environmental considerations into its food procurement, guided by the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The Agglomeration of Dinan (France) created a tender for cleaning services, aiming to not harm the environment, support access to employment and to enable companies of different sizes to apply. They are joined by the South Moravian Region (Czech Republic), which identified the need to build a new sanitarium for children with respiratory diseases and challenged the market with the ambition of making it as most aesthetic, user-friendly, and energy-efficient as possible.

The 2021 Procura + Awards will be awarded soon at a special ceremony for the winners. More information about this ceremony will be published soon.

More information about the 2021 Procura + Awards can be found at the Procura + website.

Procura+ Awards 2021: These are the shortlisted candidates

22 June 2021

The shortlisted candidates for the Procura+ Awards have been selected in all four categories: Sustainable Procurement of the Year, Innovation Procurement of the year with the subcategory Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT, and Procurement Initiative of the year. The Procura+ Awards are an initiative of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability, in co-operation with the EU-funded Procure2Innovate project.

The ‘Sustainable Procurement of the Year’ category recognises outstanding environmental, social and economic impacts of the procurement. The shortlisted candidates are:

  • Procura+ Participant City of Copenhagen (Denmark) together with City of Odense for their organic food procurement according to the Sustainable Development Goals
  • Procura+ Participant Government of Flanders (Belgium) for creating a platform for circular furniture exchange across the Flemish Government and beyond
  • The South Moravian Region (Czech Republic) and the City of Brno for challenging the market with the ambition of most an aesthetic, user-friendly, and energy-efficient sanitarium for children
  • The Barcelona Sports Institute (Spain) for reducing packaging through procurement using an objective and transparent scoring methodology
  • Dinan Agglomeration (France) for low environmental impact cleaning services
  • Procura+ Participant City of Stavanger (Norway) for procuring ICT for schools and pushing for fair working conditions

In the category ‘Innovation Procurement of the Year’ that recognised outstanding innovation of the procurement and the public authority as a launch customer, the shortlisted candidates are

  • The Santiago de Compostela City Council (Spain) using innovation procurement to meet Santiago’s unique needs as a World Heritage City
  • The Municipality of Valladolid (Spain) for two innovative social and health solutions for active ageing and independent living
  • The Supreme Audit Office, City of Prague for building net-zero energy innovation through procurement in construction in the centre of Prague
  • Procura+ Participant HSY (Helsinki) for developing a silent electric refuse truck for late-night city centre waste collection

The candidates shortlisted for the ‘Outstanding Innovation Procurement in ICT’ are:

  • Murcia Health Service (Spain) for co-creating an app using the inDemand model to improve communication between doctors and epilepsy patients
  • The Barcelona Provincial Service for Procurement of Innovation to take better care of their population

The category recognising outstanding processes and actions towards strategic, sustainable and innovation procurement, ‘Procurement Initiative of the Year’, has four shortlisted candidates:

  • Procura+ Participant Province of Zeeland (Netherlands) for using the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as compass for each procurement
  • Procura+ Participant City of Helsinki (Finland) for working towards carbon neutral municipalities and regions using carbon footprint criteria to promote sustainable public procurement
  • Procura+ Participant City of Copenhagen for developing a dynamic model for green vehicle requirements across a range of city services.
  • The University of Cagliari (Italy) for supporting women in academia through the provision of an on-campus kindergarten

We thank all applicants for submitting their entry and encourage all shortlisted candidates and all applicants to keep up the good work. ICLEI will announce the finalists in summer. Winners will be announced during an Award Ceremony later this year.

Find out more information about the shortlisted candidates here.

GLA Group features 12 case studies on responsible procurement

16 June 2021

Procura+ Participant GLA (Greater London Authority) Group has recently published 12 case studies on responsible procurement. They address good practice examples of public procurement within the London Fire Brigade, the London Legacy Development Corporation, Transport of London and the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS). 12 individual case studies are showcasing the power of public procurement and the valuabe work being done in several areas such as construction, transport and textiles.

To only name a couple, the London Fire Brigade is making the switch to electric, in order to drastically cut its carbon use from the cars in its fleet. Transport of London is ethically procuring TfL uniforms ensuring the people who make its uniforms work under safe and fair conditions.

Using circular procurement strategies and new business models, the MPS is creating innovative solutions for reducing waste and is further committed to delivering social, economic and environmental outcomes through an extensive construction programme.

The case studies highlight the progress being made to achieve the ambitious commitments set out in the Responsible Procurement Implementation Plan 2018-20. The GLA Group summarized results in a Responsible Procurement Progress Report 2019-20. The newly re-elected Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, came out with a new Responsible Procurement Policy 2021 which forms the foundation of further efforts to strive for responsible procurement.

Public buyers swap circular procurement stories as part of Procura+

8 June 2021

The term 'circular economy' is all around. From the European Commission’s Circular Economy Action Plan, to the European Circular Cities Declaration (CCD), governments of all levels are getting behind the circular economy as the model for a resource-efficient, low-carbon and socially responsible society. But practically speaking, what does circularity mean for procurement?

This is exactly the question that the Procura+ Circular Procurement Interest Group aims to answer, by bringing together a range of procurement and policy practitioners to share their real-life experience and discuss their upcoming plans.

At the third meeting of the Interest Group on 20 May, Tonje Nerby presented Oslo’s approach for increasing the circularity of city-owned ICT products, which along with circular requirements in tenders includes a range of capacity building, market dialogue, and monitoring activities. Valentina Schippers-Opejko also presented the City of Haarlem’s approach to procuring cough-screens for offices in response to COVID. Several discussions also took place, such as on overcoming obstacles to circular construction, getting started with circular furniture procurement, and how to set targets and monitor progress towards circular procurement. This last point in particular is a big topic of interest, hopefully to be returned to at the next meeting.

The Circular Procurement Interest Group - which is coordinated by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability with support from the CityLoops project - brings together participants from the Procura+ European Sustainable Procurement Network, CCD signatories, and UN’s One Planet Network communities. Current group members are drawn from 37 public purchasers and circular procurement experts from 11 European countries, plus Canada. For more information about this and other Procura+ Interest Groups, visit us here.

Cities taking action on improving school meals

27 May 2021

School food is an essential service provided by local governments in many countries. School food (or catering services) represents a significant share of the procurement budget of many local governments. Yet how should local government procurers decide which fish should or should not be purchased (because of over fishing)? What kind of strategy might work best for reducing leftovers (plate waste)? What is the best way to involve parents to ensure that their voices are also heard? These are the kinds of questions and discussions taking place between the cities forming part of the City Interest Group on Sustainable School Food Procurement.

The group was formed in March and has since met twice online so that its members can share their experiences (both good and not so good) on how to help improve or transform their school meal service to a service which is both good for people and our planet.

The group brings together eight cities and one school – Ghent (Belgium), Aarhus, Copenhagen (Denmark), Tallinn (Estonia), Helsinki (Finland), Ladzijai (Lithuania), Riga (Latvia), Rybnik (Poland), and Lyceum No. 126 Saint Petersburg - and is coordinated by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability. The City Interest Group has been formed as part of the EU-funded StratKIT project, which aims to construct sustainability pathways across the Baltic Sea Region by targeting its food and catering purchases.

More information is available here.

Procura + Participant Flanders Government launches new LCC Tool for indoor lighting

25 May 2021

Procura+ Participant Flanders Government developed a new Office Indoor Lighting LCC-Tool based on the original Smart-spp LCC-CO2 Tool. It can be seen as complementary to the ‘LCC-tool indoor lighting’ of the European Commission (EC). Both tools are based on the same principles and data (e.g. for CO2 information) and the development teams regularly coordinated their efforts to guarantee a common basis.

You can use the Office Indoor Lighting LCC-Tool (Government of Flanders) for more complex situations, to also consider the embedded emissions or to simulate lease situations. Broadly speaking, the Office Indoor Lighting LCC-Tool offers you the following additional options:

  • Input of a complex building structure with a large quantity of different lighting devices (LCC-tool indoor lighting from the European Commission offers a maximum of five types of lighting devices)
  • Covers both acquisition and lease contracts
  • Enables the option to consider embedded emissions from the production and end-of life stage, if an Environmental Product Declarations (EPD) is available for all lighting devices

„We could count on a lot of interest and help while developing the tool. We would especially like to thank the Procura+ Network and the Procura+ Interest Group for their strong involvement." Els Verwimp, Flanders Government

Would you like to learn more? Join the official ‘Office Indoor Lighting LCC-Tool’ launch webinar on 1 June, 9:30 – 12:00! You can register here. Registration is possible up to two days before the event. The link to participate will be sent shortly before the webinar.

Find the tool and a user guide here.