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National Food Train News

The latest news from the Food Train.

Colin Smyth MSP at Food Train's HO

Colin Smyth MSP small pic

Colin Smyth MSP (left) popped into our new HO today to talk about the issues of loneliness and social isolation with our Friends Project Manager, Scott McGill (right).

Colin is very interested in this issue and is keen to assist in helping Food Train to raise awareness of the issue at both local and national level to ensure the appropriate level of support is provided long term.   

Head Office on the move...

Hestan entrance small

We moved from our existing Head Office location in Castle Street Dumfries to Hestan Southwest located at the Crichton Business Park in Dumfries in late September and were fully operational there from 2 October 2017. See photo of our new entrance area and lovely building. Ample free car parking outside the building with disabled friendly access in a beautiful location. The site postcode is DG1 4TA 


National Lottery £1.2m funding for Eat Well Age Well

Eat Well Age Well Press Release

Big Lottery Fund has today announced £1.2million funding for our new Eat Well Age Well project which aims to help reduce the risk and incidence of malnutrition among older people living at home in Scotland. 

Welcoming the funding, Chief Executive Michelle Carruthers MBE said: “This funding award is the culmination of many dedicated people coming together, listening and learning from older people about their food needs.  Through the Eat Well, Age Well project, we will work towards a sustainable approach to reduce malnutrition among older people living at home and create a long lasting and engaged network across the country committed to this issue. We are absolutely delighted with this Big Lottery Fund award, which will allow us to carry on the legacy of our founders in partnership with others.”

Big Lottery Fund Scotland Chair, Maureen McGinn, said: “This award, made possible by National Lottery players, will bring together partners in the public, third and private sectors to help tackle malnutrition amongst older people in our communities. With its expertise, knowledge and skills, the Food Train is well placed to lead this initiative while working with others to ensure a nation-wide approach. I look forward to following the progress of the Eat Well, Age Well Project as it begins to create a much needed strategy to address this across Scotland.”


Marri at Scottish Parliament

Regional Manager Marri attends Scottish Parliament Opening Ceremony



On Saturday 2nd July, MSP Ruth Maguire invited our North Ayrshire Regional Manager Marri Welsh as Cunninghame South’s Local Hero, joined by 128 other MSPs and their Local Heroes to celebrate the Opening Ceremony of the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh.

Highlights of the day’s events included Her Majesty the Queen addressing MSPs in the Chamber and Local Heroes taking part in the ‘Riding’ procession down Edinburgh’s Royal Mile.

Commenting on her decision to nominate Marri and Food Train, Ruth said: ‘As the fifth session of the Scottish Parliament gets under way, it’s right that the people of Scotland are placed at the heart of our events. Together with my fellow MSPs, we want to celebrate the achievements of our Local Heroes from across every constituency and region in Scotland. Marri’s work is truly inspirational, having a transformational impact on the lives of older people who rely on Food Train to deliver their essential shopping, working against loneliness, and allowing older people to live in their own homes.’

Responding to her nomination, Marri said: ‘I am absolutely delighted to have been nominated as a Local Hero and to attend this wonderful occasion with Ruth. Food Train has been providing services for older people across Scotland for 21 years. As an Ayrshire girl, I was thrilled to bring our vital shopping service to North Ayrshire in 2015. Our services are delivered by a team of volunteers, every one of them a local hero in Food Train’s eyes and I am thrilled to represent all of them and our organisation, on this very memorable day'.


Marri at opening of Parliament

21st Birthday

Happy 21st Birthday To Us

Food Train is now 21 years old!

 On 29th June, Food Train reached the grand old age of 21! Happy birthday to us! From little acorns mighty oaks grow. And today, we provide 5 services, with the support of 900 volunteers, in 34 vans/4mini buses, across 8 regions of Scotland, to over 2,500 older people. Here's to the next 21!









Eat well, stay safe

Eat well, stay safe!
Food Standards Scotland are campaigning to highlight some areas of best practice around food safety and hygiene. Food poisoning isn’t just something you get outside your home – the meals you prepare can be a source of food poisoning too. The ‘Four Cs’ – cleaning, cooking, chilling and cross-contamination can help you identify and avoid potential sources of food poisoning. Some quick tips:

  • Cleaning Wash and dry your hands thoroughly. Keep worktops, chopping boards and utensils clean. Don’t forget to change your dishtowels regularly.
  • Cooking Always follow the instructions on the label, always check your food is steaming hot in the middle – there should be steam coming out. Do not reheat food more than once and take extra care your food is cooked all the way through.
  • Chilling Keep your fridge at the right temperature (between 0°C and 5°C) and keep the door closed as much as possible. Wait for food to cool down before you put it in the fridge. If your fridge is full, it might need your help! Turn the temperature down to help it fight germs.
  • Cross-contamination This is the final operation in the battle against germs. Keep raw meat and unwashed vegetables separate from ready-to-eat food during storage and preparation. Don’t let raw meat drip onto other food. Please ask us if you would like more information.

 Remember the 4 Cs and don’t make your mealtime a horror story! 

‘Use by' and ‘best before’ dates
Another thing to remember is the importance of ‘use by’ and ‘best before’ dates. Many people don’t know there is a difference – do you?

  • A ‘use by’ date is about food safety and is used on foods that go off quickly, such as raw meat or fish, cooked sliced meats and dairy products. Food should not be eaten after its use by date as it may not be safe.
  • A ‘best before’ date is about food quality rather than food safety, so after this date expires the food will not be harmful, but its flavour, colour or texture might begin to deteriorate.

Further useful information can be found at