Locavore News — Ontario


New Toronto Urban Food and Agriculture Learning Centre Opens to the Public

FoodShare Toronto and MetroAg – Alliance for Urban Agriculture are opening to the public the Toronto Urban Food and Agriculture Learning Centre (TUFALC). The aim is to provide information to all researchers, practitioners, advocates and others interested in urban food and agriculture matters in greater Toronto, as well as across North America and worldwide. The TUFALC consists of two separate but related collections housed in the same room within the building occupied by FoodShare at 90 Croatia Street (entrance on Brock Avenue, just south of Bloor Street West, close to the Dufferin Subway Station). Half of the collection comes from FoodShare, and contains primarily published materials pertaining to local and general interest in the areas of growing and managing personal and community gardens and other food-security issues. The other portion is the Jac Smit Library of Urban Agriculture, which was gathered by The Urban Agriculture Network, a US-based non-profit organization. Details on Facebook.


Backyard Bounty, Guelph’s urban farming business

Backyard Bounty is working to provide more options to you and your family for your yard.   We want to help provide a solution for anyone who would like to transform their grass into a productive space that grows edible plants, native species, or pollinators, or incorporates different aspects to make it more ecologically friendly.  To do this, we are expanding out of our current model with the help of Create Order to include options for homeowners which provide a variety of different gardens for your family’s use.  Check out Edible/Eco Landscaping for more details! These options are also available for institutions and companies. We are now looking for 4 interns to work with us for the 2011 season. Website.


Canada’s Economic Action Plan Grows New Opportunities for Ontario Fruit Producers

Canada’s Economic Action Plan is delivering real results for Ontario fruit producers and processors. MP Dean Allison (Niagara West-Glanbrook) announced today, on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, an investment of more than $163,000 to Cherry Lane Frozen Fruits. This repayable contribution will help the company improve its processing equipment, allowing it to retain its market position against foreign competition. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada release.


Amherstburg Farmers Market gets go-ahead for second year

The Amherstburg Farmers Market has been granted approval for a second year after town council was told what a success year one was. Tourism officer Anne Rota appeared before town council Monday night and stated that one of the aims of the market was to promote local farm, agricultural and, to a lesser extent, artisan products. She said the market successfully operated for 19 weeks with ten vendors retailing products each week. Rota said there was an average of 300 customers per week with the average expenditure made by customers being $23. Amhertsburg Echo story.


Local agribusiness gets provincial help

Pine River Cheese and Anderkin Foods Inc. received a financial boost from the province Friday. The Grey Bruce Agricultural and Culinary Association (GBACA) also received funding to help promote local food. The province spent a total of $112,285 to help the local businesses and organization. Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and Huron-Bruce MPP Carol Mitchell made the announcement at Kincardine’s Hive ‘N Hoe Country Store, where Pine River Cheese and Butter Co-op is operating a temporary store while its fire-damaged facility is repaired. It’s also Anderkin Food’s Lazy J Ranch honey production facility and store. Owen Sound Sun Times story.


Getting Your Apple a Day Just Got Easier

As a lover of Snakebites (quite possibly the world’s tastiest beverage of half cider and half beer), I was absolutely shocked to learn that it is illegal for our local cider and local beer to ride in the same delivery truck, en route to eager customers in Ontario. Talk about yet another barrier to local food distribution! So kudos to Grant Howes, Jenifer Dean and the rest of the gang at the County Cider Company for landing one of the four distribution companies in Ontario who ARE allowed to legally distribute cider: “Premier Brands”. Contributed to Good Food Revolution by Karin Desveaux-Potters, Gastronomy Cluster, Economic Development Office, Prince Edward County.


Province boosting local food

Ontario served up a homegrown meal at an Etobicoke daycare Tuesday. “We want to help connect our local farmers and our food suppliers with our public institutions,” said the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Carol Mitchell. Mitchell and Laurel Broten the Minister of Children and Youth Services dished up an Ontario grown lunch for a class of daycare children at the Thomas Berry Children Centre. The meal was part of the first round of grant recipients of the Broader Public Sector Investment Fund, a partnership between the agriculture ministry and the Greenbelt Fund. Toronto Sun story.


Meat-packing plant takes first shipment of cows

A Kitchener meat packing facility that sat empty for almost three years is now up and running, about two months ahead of schedule. Arnold Meat Packers, located on Arnold Street, took its first test shipment of 42 cows on Tuesday and plans to eventually increase production to as much as 200 cows per day, said vice-president and co-owner Mihaela Ciuciureanu. The plant has been certified by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and plans to sell beef products to such customers as Maple Leaf Foods, Cargill Meat Solutions and Piller’s Sausages & Delicatessens, she said. Ciuciureanu and her husband, Claudiu, purchased the 40,000-square-foot plant last fall for $1.6 million from Farm Credit Canada, the main creditor for previous owner Gencor Foods, which closed the facility in April 2008. Kitchener-Waterloo Record story.


The Drake Hotel: A Good Food Fighter Profile— 5 Questions with Chef Anthony Rose

Anthony Rose is the Executive Chef at the Drake Hotel. Four months ago, the Drake Hotel opened a barbecue pop-up shop, the Drake BBQ. Open from 6 pm “until the meat runs out”, Chef Rose has been busy preparing menus for both the hotel and the meat shop. Chef Rose was kind enough to squeeze me into his busy schedule to discuss ‘Good Food’ and how it affects his cooking philosophy. Kylie Meyermann writes for Good Food Revolution.


Documentary on Food Sustainability

My name is Ari Cohen and I’m a producer-director seeking the services of a researcher writer to assist me in the development of a documentary on food sustainability. I have been producing award winning films for the past 12 years including such projects as Too Colourful for the League, Being Osama, Falafelism and The Uluit.  This is a contractual position with the potential for more involvement if the film is green lit. Rotating Planet website.



University of Guelph researcher challenges provincial ag policy

When a University of Guelph researcher began to study the agriculture sector in Ontario’s Greenbelt, he expected to find differences from the overall provincial industry. But Harry Cummings, a professor with the university’s School of Environmental Design and Rural Development had certain expectations. With the region’s proximity to the GTA, he had anticipated — and found — declines in traditional agriculture, such as cash crops, dairy, hogs and cattle between 2001 and 2006. Farming in the Greenbelt area and near urban environments “is much more problematic because of various factors like the cost of land, the feeling from urban neighbours that you’re not quite doing what you should be doing,” he says. Better Farming story.


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