Checking out the local cafe
I almost melted in my chair over my cappuccino and freshly baked raspberry muffin…still warm from the oven when it made its way to my plate! I’d love to start off my day like that every day. Of course, as a bit of a food geek, I had to take a photo. And over the course of our two days in town, we also tried the breakfast bagel, breakfast wrap, bacon and egg bagel and smoked salmon bagel – all scrumptious! Food and Farming Canada checks out the Nuttshell Next Door in the Village of Lakefield, Kawartha region of Ontario.
What We Heard
Summary of the Toronto Food Strategy Consultation and Engagement. Staff heard from more than 60 groups and approximately 1090 residents across the city.(see map in appendix). An overwhelming majority were women. Everyone is engaged in food whether or not they have taken the time to reflect on food issues. So people from all walks of life shared stories and discussed the food issues in their community. Many came with written answers to the four questions and the discussion was overwhelming. The majority of the participants were women. The Toronto Food Policy Council assisted by organizing discussions on key themes, including urban agriculture, small green business, poverty and the environment, as well as specific sessions for youth, academics and chefs/food artisans. Report.
Young Urban Farmers shows us how to cheat at backyard farming
Most urban foodies would love to grow their own organic spinach, but most of us barely have time to stop at Sobeys on our way home from work. Recognizing Torontonians’ collective lack of time (read: laziness), three recent business grads started Young Urban Farmers, a service that turns clients’ yards into produce departments. For $155, YUF plants a vegetable garden of the customer’s choosing, then builds a shelter to keep out the raccoons. For $495, they’ll weed, water and even harvest the bounty. This means that naughty hosts can claim their organic salad greens are from their own garden, without ever lifting a spade. Toronto Life story.
Global Roots Garden
This summer, the STOP’s Wychwood Barns location has blossomed into full, verdant glory. The sheltered garden has grown lush and productive, the outdoor pizza oven is a roaring success. And throughout the open space of Barn 5 lie a cluster of abundant demonstration gardens filled with a dazzling array of vegetables and herbs—the Global Roots Garden. The seven Global Roots plots are each devoted to particular ethnic communities with large populations in Toronto. Details.
Everything’s coming up local
Corporate Knights invited Lori Stahlbrand, founder and President of Local Food Plus, and Wayne Roberts, Project Coordinator for the Toronto Food Policy Council, out for lunch at the University of Toronto’s Gallery Grill, a restaurant known for its locally-minded menu. We spoke to them about the local food movement’s progress and appeal. Corporate Knights article.
Put Food at the Top of the Municipal Election
Why prioritize food? Food nourishes. Not only does it provide the nutrition on which good health is built, food also helps build and sustain healthy vibrant cities. And as ‘the great connector’, something all of us have in common, it becomes a conduit through which great things are made possible. Debbie Field Executive Director, Food Share discussion paper.
Urban moms promote backyard chickens as election campaign issue
Two recent arrivals to Kenora are looking to the incoming mayor and council to take a more liberated view on the issue of allowing community residents to keep chickens in their back yards. Providing their families with farm fresh eggs for breakfast isn’t the only reason Mary Corp and Dawn Mitchell want to raise their own chickens. It’s also part of a growing movement in towns and cities across the country to promote community sustainability and locally grown produce. Daily Miner and News story.
Greening the Canadian National Exhibition
We signed a declaration with Local Foods Plus and we are going to be working with our exhibitors over the winter months to encourage them to use supplies from farmers who have that designation with the Local Food Plus group. Inside Toronto article.
Wayne Roberts, Coordinator of the Toronto Food Policy Council, Retires
Wayne Roberts, coordinator of the Toronto Food Policy Council (TFPC), retired in June after working with the TFPC for ten years. The council, formed back in 1991, experienced many successes during his tenure. Most recently the council authored a food strategy report entitled, Cultivating Food Connections, which calls on all of the city’s departments to address healthy food issues and in 2009 formed the Toronto Youth Food Policy Council. Mr. Roberts has also served as an invaluable resource to our very own Oakland Food Policy Council, providing guidance and encouragement throughout its beginning stages. At his retirement, Mr. Roberts offered his inspiring thoughts on the modern food movement as he moves on to the next phase of his life. His first piece of advice was to “love your city.” Oakland Local blog with link to Wayne Roberts retirement remarks: “Secret Retirement Recipe for Successful Food Policy Councils.”
Spilling on Niagara’s wine establishment
Winemaker Jean-Pierre Colas is hunched over one of his prized barrels in the cellar of Vignoble Rancourt, a tiny, little-known estate in Niagara-on-the-Lake. He draws out a sample of inky-purple merlot with a glass tube and releases it into a tasting glass. Then, as a reporter starts asking sensitive questions, he gets up on something else he’s fond of – a soap box. Globe and Mail story.
AND IF YOU HAVE TIME
Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation, August Newsletter.
How Kia is driving change in our food system
Time lapse video shot in Gilder community Housing in Toronto. You Tube video.