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The Power of the Public Plate Podcast Episode 8 - Manta: How to Scale-Up Local Food Procurement

  • Published on November 10, 2021

“The procurement model [..] represents an opportunity to provide children with fresh, local and culturally appropriate food contributing to nutrition and food security. It’s at the same time an opportunity to support small local farmers and cooperative organisations, [..] increase a stable market access and support the production and broader consumption of certain types of products." - Mirian Johanna Zambrano Benavides

The 8th episode of the Power of the Public Plate podcast is a conversation with Mirian Johanna Zambrano Benavides, from Manta, Ecuador.


Johanna is the Project Coordinator of the Feeding Urbanization FAO Ecuador Project, with more than 9 years experience in territorial planning integrating the adoption and monitoring of mitigation and adaptation measures to climate change in the agricultural sector. She also works with the design and implementation of local strategies for resilience and sustainability of food systems.


With Johanna, we explore the latest change in public food procurement in Manta, Ecuador, which is one of the first examples of local food procurement complimentary to the country’s centralised food procurement model. Not only is it the first local model, but it’s also pioneering in its approach to local production and the creation of urban-rural linkages. 


We unpack how the project is able to link the local economy with nutrition, as well as to involve local and smallholder farmers in the decision-making and legislative process. Apart from strengthening the capacity of local farmers, the programme also is successful in creating an understanding of food procurement at the local level by training procurers. Ecuador has a big indigenous heritage, which is reflected in the indigenous knowledge employed in the city’s and region’s agricultural production and logistics. In our conversation, we unpack how that can inform procurement as well as how to scale-up across the country. 


The Power of the Public Plate, brought to you by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability and the UN One Planet Network, is a collection of interviews on how public authorities from around the world leverage procurement to positively impact the food value chain, to ultimately contribute to sustainable food systems. Each week new guests from different parts of the world join us to explore their idea of sustainable food procurement, so make sure to tune in for all the episodes!


You can listen to the podcast on Spotify, Google Podcast, Apple Podcast and One Planet Network YouTube or ICLEI Youtube


To find out more about us, visit our websites:

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability 

One Planet Network


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For any queries contact: Josefine Hintz -

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