robin gourlay Robin Gourlay

“In a busy professional life, what you commit to do outside of work has to be purposeful and have the potential to make a real difference. I value highly time spent with Eating Cities. It is an outstanding project which feeds the minds of young people who are our future influencers and decision makers. At its intensive Summer Food Campus you see young people becoming empowered, interested in making a difference, acquiring knowledge of food and food systems that would take years to absorb in any other way and developing for themselves an ethic of responsibility for food in society and its impact globally on health and the environment which they carry forward.”

Robin Gourlay was drafted into the Scottish Government to work on the delivery of the National Food and Drink Policy. The current programme of work looks at increasing the adoption of sustainable food and drink procurement across Scotland in the public sector. An important aspect is increasing the understanding of Caterers and Buyers how to factor in sustainability, how this helps deliver a range of Government policies and why this is important. The work also entails liaising with the Scottish food and drink industry on widening the competitive base for public sector contracts by showing how SMEs can access and compete for public sector food and drink contracts.
He has a varied CV, having started in Hotel Management, Catering Officer at the University of Aberdeen, Strathclyde Colleges Refectories Manager, and then Client Contract Manager for Strathclyde Regional Council where he was responsible for 2,100 catering locations of which 1,800 were schools. At East Ayrshire Council he has managed at various times Transport, Property, Leisure, Refuse Collection, Street Cleaning, Grounds Maintenance and Cleaning, Janitorial, School Crossing and Catering Services. He believes that public food and in particular school food is uniquely placed to deliver a communityfocused health improvement, sustainability and economic development agenda.