Incredible Edible Todmorden, the local food network, has registered as a community benefit society. The bencom, now known as the Incredible Edible Todmorden Community Team, is famed for its guerrilla gardening tactics and commmunity vegetable beds.
It also runs demonstrations and workshops, organises festivals, encourages people to buy local food and works with local organisations to build a stronger, kinder community. There are no paid staff, buildings or funding from statutory organisations. Its only income is from donations and fees for talks and tours.
Chair of the Incredible Edible Todmorden Community Team Mary Clear said: “We had to incorporate because we were above the £5,000 limit for community groups. The Charity Commission was too restrictive and we didn’t want to be seen as an ordinary company because what we’re interested in is radical community building.
“The words ‘co-op’ and ‘community benefit’ are really powerful. And of course Todmorden is part of the history of the co-operative movement, so it all made sense. Community benefit is what we’re all about.”
In eight years Todmorden has inspired more than 100 Incredible Edible projects in the UK and 700 worldwide. In the town itself there are two spin-off social enterprises; Incredible Farm, which teaches small scale commercial food growing and marketing skills to young people, and the Incredible Aquagarden, which combines state-of-the-art growing systems such as aquaponics and hydroponics with traditional techniques.
The Incredible Edible Network was set up in 2012 to respond to enquiries from new groups and provide information about food activism. Incredible Edible Ltd, a non-profit company, protects and licences the Incredible Edible brand and logo.