From Land to Plate: The dilemmas and victories of alternative food distribution in Ontario
The Ontario Culinary Alliance (OCTA) summit was held on Monday (an excellent event by the way, and well worth attending next year for anyone connected to culinary tourism), and Lauren Baker, the Director of Sustain Ontario presented the research that was commissioned as a result of the previous year’s discussion about local food availability and accessibility. It is an interesting document, and it showcases a number of excellent examples of how different organizations are making local food a sustainable reality. Report (2MB PDF).
MPP proposes tax break for food donations
So far, Sarnia-Lambton MPP Bob Bailey’s private members bill calling for farmers to get a non-refundable Ontario tax credit of 25 per cent of the wholesale value of food they redirect to food banks has sailed through first and second reading in Ontario’s Legislature with strong support. In fact, Bill 78 passed second reading Sept. 16 with unanimous support from all parties. The bill would also permit unused tax credits to be carried forward and deducted for up to five years. Better Farming story.
Consumer Education Key to Direct Marketing
The economics of the last hog cycle drove one Huron County couple into the direct marketing business. Teresa and Martin Van Raay from the Dashwood area say it’s taken some time to get themselves up and running in direct marketing – but they’re starting to see their business grow. Teresa Van Raay says one of the big things is educating the consumer. The Van Raays have a website as part of their direct marketing operation – it’s www.thewholepig.ca. Blackburn Agri-Media story.
It’s municipal election day, and food is an issue
Food has become a municipal issue in Guelph. About 100 people turned up for a pre-election forum on food issues a few weeks ago, prompting incumbent mayor Karen Farbridge to predict it will be an agenda item for the next city council, which will be formed today. Owen Roberts blogs as Urban Cowboy.
Local food movement needs local processing
Ontario’s farmers and food processors suffered another setback recently when the J.M. Smucker Company announced it was moving its Bick’s pickling operations from the Ontario towns of Dunnville and Delhi to south of the border. This is just the latest in a seemingly ongoing string of food processing plant closures in recent years. Not only do these cost our economy manufacturing jobs – more than 200 full-time and part-time jobs in this case — but they also mean a loss of markets for farmers. Food and Farming Canada blog.
The Gumbo that Unites Us All
Before venturing south-of-the-border to New Orleans for the Community Food Security Coalition’s 14th annual conference this past weekend, I knew little about the Big Easy beyond it’s jazz and (of course) its unique southern food cuisine. However after three days of being inspired by 1,000 foodies from across North America, I began to realize that the food movement really is the “Gumbo That Unites Us All”. If local sustainable food can reuinite a determined community in New Orleans and create links between producers and consumers all over Canada, it seems to me that building and maintaining local sustainable food systems is clearly the best foot forward. Tracy Phillippi post Toronto Youth Food Policy Council.
Your address could make you fat: Live close to supermarket, not restaurants
You want to lose weight? Live near a supermarket — but far away from restaurants. In a recent study, researchers at the State University of New York at Buffalo looked at women’s body mass index in relation to their neighbourhoods’ food amenities. They found that women who lived near a supermarket tended to have a lower body mass index, meaning they were less likely to be obese, than those closer to a convenience store. The upshot of the study is not that people should pack up and move, but that public policy planners need to consider the food environment. Fort Frances times story.
Proposed Amendment 1 (2010) to the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, 2006
The Proposed Amendment focuses on four key areas for ensuring sustainable long-term growth in the Simcoe Sub-area by:
- Identifying urban nodes where growth and intensification can be focused;
- Providing population and employment forecasts for all communities in the Simcoe area to ensure that growth is focused where it can best be accommodated;
- Requiring that communities assess the land they need to meet their forecasted growth by 2031, and manage the supply of land available for development; and
- Identifying focussed, strategic industrial employment areas along Highway 400 to support job creation, manufacturing and industrial activities and economic employment districts to support local employment identifying economic employment districts that can support significant local employment. Ontario Ministry of Infrastructure release.
Public Health releases 2010 Nutritious Food Basket report
Each year, Region of Waterloo Public Health conducts grocery store pricing to monitor the affordability of a basic nutritious diet for individuals and households. This year, the weekly cost of a Nutritious Food Basket for a “reference family of four” is $168.45. Details.
Contest Asks Rural Ontarians To “Do Something Great!”
The Rural Ontario Institute has launched a special campaign to encourage rural residents to talk up the advantages of living in the country. The online contest asks rural Ontarians: What is one thing that you can do to make your rural community an even better place to live, work and play? Steps to Leadership is a leadership development program that offers rural Ontario communities and organizations the opportunity to develop a new generation of leaders. Details.
AND IF YOU HAVE TIME
5 New Cooking Apps Fit For a Hacker
Cooking for Geeks: According to O’Reilly Media, “If you’re a programmer, hacker, or maker who is interested in learning how to cook, this book is for you.” The book is for anyone interested in experimentation in the kitchen and understanding reactions in cooking. The app offers the full book and includes all of the stanza features. Food+Tech Connect post.
The Best Cooking and Recipe Apps for iPhone
Cooking with your iPhone is a lot tastier when you have the right recipes and culinary techniques. Here’s our list of the best apps for turning your iPhone into a pocket sous chef. Lifehacker list.
Smart phone apps can help you eat, drink and be healthy
How did we ever live without smart phones? Applications, or “apps,” downloaded onto these phones allow users to navigate stars and constellations in the heavens, check traffic reports and everything in between. Naturally, foodies have their app niche, too. Star News Online list.
5 iPhone Apps to Make Cooking Easy
As food prices soar and food waste becomes a more insidious environmental issue, learning how to cook is a skill from which just about anyone can benefit. Thanks to the wonderful world of iPhone Apps, home cooking, a tiresome chore or an area of confusion for many, can now be a fun and exciting journey into all aspects of the kitchen. The following are five iPhone apps that can help turn your culinary aspirations into successes. Posted on Techie Buzz.