The Power of Food Festival is coordinated by a small team, in close partnership with community food growers all around the City of Edinburgh. We are passionate about the role of community food growing as a positive force for social change and societal wellbeing.
Marie-Amélie Viatte is the Founder and Chair of the Festival. Having worked for over 20 years on a wide range of environmental and social issues, Marie-Amélie has a long-standing interest in food and its role in shaping our world. She has been hugely inspired by the community food growing initiatives in her city and their transformative effect on the individuals involved and the wider community. Marie-Amélie created the Festival to celebrate these amazing groups and raise awareness of the environmental, social, and health benefits of community food growing.
Célia Nyssens returns to the Festival team having made a central contribution in 2016. She took a break in 2017 and went travelling in South America where she worked on organic farms. Works for Nourish Scotland as a Policy Officer for Agricultural Policy and Public Health. Her personal interests in food are to cook it, enjoy it and share it with friends. Professionally, she is a strong advocate of public policies that promote a more sustainable food system, as well as policies and governance that empower citizens to grow, cook, sell, and eat healthy and environmentally friendly food.
Jossie Ellis had a key role in making the 2017 Festival success it was. She continues offering her support where needed across any Festival activity. She has always been interested in food and nature, and has recently started her own urban growing project. She left London in 2014 to travel & was hugely inspired by the people & communities she met & heard about, who were not waiting for someone else to sort out these huge problems we’re facing in the world but who were simply getting on with local projects. Working to support the Power of Food Festival in Edinburgh is a way to make a positive difference; celebrating the universal thread that is food, which connects us all & the community growers bringing people together around this collective purpose in a joyful & positive way.
Kirsty Clapshaw supports the team as Treasurer. She works as a Montessori teacher and pupil support for additional needs, as well as voluntary teaching English, but has had an interest for many years in good health and the nutritional benefits that come from fresh food. She isn’t ‘green fingered’ but with lots of hungry mouths to feed she enjoys cooking/ sharing healthy food with her family and friends. She believes the Festival is a valuable way to harness the work done by these community gardens.
Mel Hindle is a professional film producer and our fabulous image and sound guru. She used to work for STV and produced two short films of the Festival aired on STV in 2016 and 2017. She now works for the People’s Postcode Lottery and continues to generously give her time to support the Festival. She is currently preparing a podcast series about The Power of Food. Stay tuned!
Previous editions of the Festival have benefitted from the input of the following team members without whom the Festival couldn’t have got this far: Elina Rowley, Elsa Vibert, Dan Plunkett, Sarah Fairbrother (in 2017); Rebecca Chan, Rea Kenkel (in 2016); and Rebecca Crowther, Christine Giraud, Annette Hegel, Ailsa Wilson (in 2015). We’re immensely grateful to them all.