Food Standards Agency: Here to Help campaign

The challenge

The Food Standards Agency was looking to support food businesses across England, Wales and Northern Ireland through the challenges of COVID-19.

This included sharing helpful, practical guidance with new businesses, those that were diversifying and those that were reopening. A critical goal was to ensure new and adapting businesses registered with their Local Authority.

The brief

Social & Local were tasked with developing a food business partnership strategy to effectively share the FSA’s campaign messages, cascade information across large, small and micro businesses and motivate them to act.

Our Approach

We utilised our partner network to shape the strategic campaign development through one-to-one consultations with key partners across a range of sectors. Our insight informed the platforms, timing and content across the campaign, supporting FSA wider planning.

From the consultation we worked in close collaboration with the FSA teams to develop a strategy focused on telling real-world stories. We partnered with industry membership bodies to identify and produce inspiring case studies to share best practise amongst food businesses themselves.

From mussel shacks to bakeries and chip shops, we created opportunities to tell food-business stories of responding and adapting to COVID-19 during such a challenging time, and inspired others to do the same. This included integrating key messages such as registering with Local Authorities and updating allergy practise.

The assets produced from the case studies were successfully placed in local and national press, as well as distributed via regular Here to Help e-mailers produced by Social & Local and cascaded across our partner network.

In addition, we organised Q&A webinars and produced responsive content including a ‘you asked…we answered’ weekly spotlight to react to food business questions in real-time as COVID-19 unfolded.

Key results

The campaign resulted in 14,440 direct referrals of food businesses to the registration portal, representing a 55% increase year on year.

‘Here to Help’ was recognised for its impact and partner-led approach with a GCS Campaign of the Month award.