Tackling malnutrition in older people living at home in Scotland

Background to Eat Well Age Well

Eat Well Age Well is an innovative project from Food Train. Since launching in 1995 in Dumfries, Food Train has supported vulnerable older people in need by providing vital services to those who are no longer able to manage independently through age, ill health, frailty or disability. Food Train services are available across seven local authority areas in Scotland:

  • Dumfries and Galloway
  • West Lothian
  • Stirling
  • Dundee
  • Glasgow
  • Renfrewshire
  • Scottish Borders

Food Train services support around 2475 older people in Scotland, with around 1234 volunteers drawn from the local community.

Food Train provides five services, all developed in co-production with its members:

      Food Train: weekly grocery shopping and delivery (main service).
      Food Train EXTRA: monthly home support visits. Tasks may include window cleaning, freezer defrosting, changing bedding, etc..
      Food Train FRIENDS: befriending service, including telephone calls, home visits and group outings.
      Food Train LIBRARY: library outreach service for housebound older people.
      Meal Makers: neighbourhood meal sharing. Local people cook and share extra portions of their own home cooked food with an older person living nearby who could benefit from warm meals and increased social interaction.

Visit Food Train for more information.


Since 2013 Food Train has been at the forefront of meetings and events around malnutrition and has been involved in nutrition and hydration advocacy alongside the larger national associations and charities. Prior to inception there had been a series of milestones and key events which built the case and momentum for such a project.

The Eat Well Age Well project was initiated and planned by the Food Train in 2016. It has been developed and informed by research, and Food Train's experience and learning from working with older people for over 23 years, as well as the evidence and the experience gained by the UK Malnutrition Task Force.  

Funding was secured from the Big Lottery in 2017 and the project will be delivered over a 3.5 year period until March 2021 by a team of six core staff.