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Living: Innovation action plan

1. CRFS vision 2030 and challenge statements

The Marseille Living Lab challenges the disparities in access to healthy and sustainable food, as well as the economic fragility of the local urban agriculture ecosystem. This contributes to different policies and programs: 

EU FOOD 2030 policy: nutrition for sustainable and healthy diets. Food systems supporting a healthy planet. Innovation and empowering communities. 

Cities2030 objectives: Stop food poverty and insecurity, ensure access. Enhance circularity and local food belts. Develop food skills, culture and heritage. 

Aix-Marseille-Provence Metropolis and Pays d'Arles territorial food project (PAT) issues: economy and employment. Nutrition, health and social accessibility. Identity, food, cultural and tourist heritage. 

Vision: In Marseille Living Lab’s vision, in 2030, access to healthy and sustainable food from local production is improved by new ways of distribution, and fostered cooperation between actors of the CRFS. Citizens are re-connected to local, sustainable and healthy food production via new ways of food governance and food distribution. 

2. Collaboration with stakeholders

Marseille Living Lab collaborates with local authorities (city and metropolitan government), the state, civil society and NGOs (VRAC, ADDAP13, Dunes, etc.), the urban agriculture network, social centers and citizens. 

3. Living Lab resources

Marseille Living Lab operates with the CITAG team (project coordinator, project team, communication staff, event coordinator and administration team) to lead the experiments and other actions. CITAG’s urban farm Capri will produce vegetables and host workshops and other learning events. Additional funding will be needed for some experiments and other actions, and is expected from the city of Marseille as well as private foundations. 

4. Living Lab experiments

1. Agenda AU – Marseille’s urban agriculture agenda: Public agenda on urban agriculture in Marseille, containing information about recurring as well as one-time events, such as volunteer work camps, selling points for agricultural products (mainly vegetables) and workshops.Fr_07.2021_Marseille.JPG

Objectives of the experiment:

  • Connect citizens with urban food production and facilitate their participation.
  • Develop a public agenda, with both an online and a paper version (regular updates on the online version, 4 paper versions in 2023).
  • Mobilise the urban farming network in order to obtain contributions to the agenda (at least 10 contributions per paper release).
  • Enhance knowledge of the urban agriculture ecosystem amongst citizens and tourists.
  • Reach new participants for events organised by urban famers.
  • Reach new customers for urban farmers.

Contribution to Cities2030’ key objectives: 4) Enhance circularity and local food belts, 5) Develop food culture and skills

Association with working groups: 3. Distribution, 5. Consumption

Study question: can a public agenda, both online and on paper, contribute to creating greater awareness for local urban food production in Marseille? Can it raise or stabilise sales of local food producers throughout the year?


  1. A public agenda can generate greater knowledge of the urban agriculture ecosystem amongst the greater public.
  2. A public agenda will not have any measurable effect on the urban agriculture ecosystem.

Assumption: the average public in Marseille is not aware of the multitude of activities related to urban agriculture in the city.

Target group of the experiment: Urban farming network Young adults (18-25 y.), adults (25-60), seniors (+60)

Monitoring system: - Counting the return rates of the paper version that will be distributed in a variety of public places in Marseille. - Survey via social media. - Counting new customers at urban farms.

Time frame: ideate: M21-M24; build: M25-M27; monitor: M28; learn: M29

2. Épicerie mobile – mobile grocery store

Brief description of the experiment: the mobile grocery store provides access to healthy and sustainable foods in deprived areas in Marseille. It is a travelling van that will offer products at affordable prices, locally produced vegetables as well as dried products, adapted to the inhabitants needs and uses.

The experiment will be divided in 5 distinct experiments: 1) sale of urban farm Capri vegetables with consultation on products expected by the inhabitants and qualitative feedback on the farm, 2) adding dried bulk products to the mobile grocery store’s offer, 3) selling vegetables at existing dried food, bulk buying groups in deprived areas, 4) sensibilisation and food transformation workshops for the users of the mobile grocery store, 5) enlarging the variety of products by introducing local food producers to the mobile grocery store and selling their products.

Objectives of the experiment:

  • making fresh, healthy, local and sustainable products available for people of deprived areas in Marseille, with an offer adapted to inhabitants needs and uses, 
  • adapting the food production of a local farm to the needs and expectations of its neighbourhood’s inhabitants, 
  • empowering inhabitants to tend towards a more sustainable food consumption and to waste reduction, 
  • establishing a series of regular events in each neighbourhood that contribute to improving the living environment and creating social links, 
  • reinforcing the connection between the urban farm Capri and its neighbourhood’s inhabitants, 
  • going towards new publics that are not yet familiar with the farm, 
  • engaging the urban agriculture network in the matter of fair access to sustainable food. 

Contribution to Cities2030’ key objectives: 1) Secure healthy and sustainable food, 2) Stop food poverty and food insecurity, 4) Enhance circularity and local food belts,

Association with working groups: 3. Distribution, 4. Markets, 5. Consumption, 6. Waste, 9. Livelihood, growth, 10. Inclusion, equity

Study question: Can reaching out to residents via a mobile grocery shop help change the food landscape and consumption habits in neighbourhoods marked by poverty and with little quality local food supply?


  1. The mobile grocery shop makes it possible to change the food landscape of the neighbourhoods concerned, reinforces access to quality food and changes the food practices of the inhabitants.
  2. The format of a mobile grocery store is too distant from inhabitants’ food habits and requires a too long time for appropriation.

Assumption: the inhabitants of the concerned neighbourhoods have little access to sustainable food products, thus the mobile grocery store will change the food landscape of these areas.

Target group of the experiment: Inhabitants (de 0 à +99 ans) of the neighbourhoods surrounding urban farm Capri, and progressively other areas with a similar social and economic structure. Primary targets are households with little income.

Monitoring system: - Quantitative data on sales - Qualitative data via a survey

Time frame:

  • 2.1: ideate: M23-M24; build: M25-M27; monitor: M28; learn: M29
  • 2.2: ideate: M25-M26; build: M27-M29; monitor: M30; learn: M31
  • 2.3: ideate: M28-M29; build: M30-M33; monitor: M31; learn: M32
  • 2.4: ideate: M31-M32; build: M33-M36; monitor: M37; learn: M38
  • 2.5: ideate: M37-M39; build: M40-M43; monitor: M44; learn: M45

5. Other Living Lab's measures 

L’entraide pédagogique – mutual aid for better environmental education 

A peer-to-peer training cycle for educational animators of urban farms in Marseille that aims at generating synergies between actors of the education on agriculture, food and ecosystems in Marseille. It also aims at creating a better educational program on CRFS related issues directed to children in Marseille. Time frame: M19-M36. 

Communication, dissemination and capacity building actions: several events addressed to the greater public and professionals of the food sector.Objectives: capacity building, generating knowledge and discussion on CRFS. Rencontre Tiers-lieux nourriciers (third spaces as actors of the CRFS) M30 

48h de l’agriculture urbaine (dedicated to informing the greater public about urban agriculture and sustainable food production) M32 + M44. 

Creation of a chilli pepper transformation plant (feasability, partnership making, empowerment and project coordination) M40-M48.


6. SMART Goals

  1. The urban agriculture agenda will contribute to a reconnection between citizens and food production, by enhanced knowledge about the urban agriculture ecosystem. This will be achieved by distributing 250 copies of the urban agenda every three months in 2023, and 500 in 2024, with a return rate below 20% (experiment 1). 
  2. Local food producers in Marseille will gain new customers via the urban agriculture agenda. The effect will be measurable by the end of the experiment phase. 
  3. The mobile grocery store will contribute to a more inclusive and suitable food offer in deprived areas by allowing citizen participation in the food selection and design of the mobile grocery store. 15+ inhabitants of each target area will participate in workshops during the first semester of 2023 (60+ in total) (experiment 2.1). 
  4. By the end of 2023, four neighbourhoods will have weekly access to sustainable and healthy dried food products via the mobile grocery store. They will be six in 2024 (experiment 2.2). 
  5. By the end of 2023, four neighbourhoods will have weekly access to locally produced vegetables via the mobile grocery store. They will be six in 2024 (experiment 2.3). 
  6. Inhabitants of the areas targeted by the mobile grocery store will gain complementary skills in cooking with seasonal, local vegetables, via a series of transformation workshops conducted during the second semester of 2023. At least 10 inhabitants of each area will participate in these workshops (60+ in total) (experiment 2.4). 
  7. By the end of summer 2024, the mobile grocery store will contribute to securing local food production by stabilising or increasing the sales of participating local food producers, compared to the period prior to the experiment (experiment 2.5). 
  8. The number of households reached through the mobile grocery store will be stabilised or increased by the end of the first semester of 2024, compared to the start of the experiment (experiment 2). 
  9. Cooperation between actors of the urban agriculture ecosystem in Marseille will be enhanced via a peer-to-peer training cycle. 5+ urban farming or gardening projects will participate (other actions). 
  10. Global awareness for CRFS related issues in Marseille, especially local food production and food security, will be enhanced via a series of events aiming the general public (e.g. 48h de l’agriculture urbaine in 2023 and 2024), as well as civil society, policy makers and researchers (e.g. JAUM 2023) (other actions). 




7. Communication, dissemination and exploitation

JAUM 2023: public event targeted at CRFS actors, policy makers, researchers. 1 LinkedIn post per experiment. 2+ Facebook posts per experiment. 5 Instagram stories per experiment. 1 press release per experiment. 

8. Continuity- and scale-up measures

Progressively developing new distribution points and mobilising new local food producers. In the second phase, presenting the mobile grocery store to other cities of the area. 

9. Risk assessment

Low participation of target groups is a medium level risk that can be addressed via the mobilisation of field actors that know local communities. 

Low participation of food producers, a medium risk, will be addressed by demonstrating positive results via first experiment stages. 

Time and resources needed to fully implement the mobile grocery store are important, which can cause delays in execution. This risk can be addressed by good anticipation. 

Difficulty to implement in targeted neighbourhoods with very important poverty and crime, as an alien actor not well know by the population.

The lack of additional fundings is a high risk CITAG will address via research of an alternative business model. 

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