Local Food News — Canada

Food Day Canada

What’s the reason for Food Day Canada? It’s pretty simple. We believe that Canada has some of the smartest, the very best and brightest in both agriculture – just look at the ingredients in our markets right now – and the culinary arts. And we need to celebrate them all. There are many highly visible chefs and restaurants across the country – most are part of our #FDC2014 roster. But there are also many who should be far better known outside their own regions, especially as so many Canadians are hitting the road this summer. Website.

 

A Taste of Local Cuisine through Photography

One of the great joys of working for National Geographic Travel is getting the opportunity to eat your way through an assignment. Food is a central part to any culture or community so it inevitably ends up in a story. Quebec City is no exception. There are many different things that define its food scene: café au lait with flakey croissants, ice wine, maple syrup candy, and cheese. For example, raclette—melted cheese served with potatoes, vegetables, and meat—is found in many  local restaurants. The warm dish was traditionally eaten by peasants in the mountains of Switzerland and France, and now is served in Quebec. The modern raclette, pictured here, refers to the tabletop grill where one cooks the food. The dish itself involves a big plate of meats, cheese, and a couple of eggs alongside potatoes, cornichons, and other vegetables for people to sit around and cook together. National Geographic story.

 

Quebec tomato wine goes global

A small wine producer near Quebec City is hoping to expand production of his one-of-a-kind wine recipe — made with tomatoes. After four years of production, the president of Domaine de la Vallée Bras, Pascal Miche, says he sells thousands of bottles in 22 different counties, and now cannot keep up with demand. Miche’s tomato wine was first created 1938 by his great-grandfather in Belgium. After moving to Quebec 15 years ago, Miche says he adapted his recipe using a blend of heirloom tomatoes from the Baie-St-Paul region. CBC News Montreal story.

 

Vancouver’s green jobs growth spurt led by local food businesses: report

Green jobs in Vancouver increased 19% between 2010 and 2013, but more work is needed to meet ambitious City of Vancouver goals to become the “greenest city” in the world by 2020, according to a report released by the Vancouver Economic Commission June 19. Green and local food jobs currently represent 4.9% (20,000) of all the jobs in Vancouver, says the report. That’s up from 4.2%, or 16,700, in 2010. Business Vancouver story.

 

Regina’s new stadium may go local for concession food

Among the many details yet to be worked out for Regina’s new football stadium is the type of concession food that will be offered, and there is early talk that home-grown vendors could get the nod. “I think our goal will be to create a significant local flavour,” Mark Allan, CEO of Evraz Place (the agency which will operate the stadium for the city), said earlier this week when asked about food. That notion has a tantalizing air to it, for vendors at the Regina Farmers’ Market. CBC News story.

 

Engaging Manitobans to Change Food Safety Regulations

This question was prompted by the controversial and well-publicized raid by Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development’s (MAFRD) on Harborside Farms in August 2013. As a result, citizens are calling on government to better support Manitoba’s local food system in support of family-scale farmers, fishers, hunters and processors.In a surprising turn of events last summer, MAFRD confiscated $8,000 of cured meats from Harborside Farms, some of which had recently won an award from the province’s own Great Manitoba Food Fight. The inspectors were not required to show evidence of wrongdoing. Pam and Clint Cavers, owners, attempted to negotiate with MAFRD to be allowed to test the confiscated meat at their own costs to prove it safe. MAFRD refused and destroyed the meat, yet later dropped all charges. The message coming from the grassroots is clear: farmers, fishers, processors and citizens are demanding a say in policy-making and have formed a coalition under the banner of FEAST (Farmers and Eaters Sharing the Table) to encourage the Province to support local sustainable food. Sustain Ontario guest blog by Colin Anderson.

 

NDP Launches Own National Food Strategy

The federal New Democrats have developed their own national food strategy, aiming to connect government policy on agriculture, rural development, health and income security. “It’s an all-encompassing program and policy document that talks about agriculture, sustainable agriculture communities, healthy food, local options, children that are undernourished. It’s part of what we promised in our platform in 2011,” explains NDP Agriculture Critic Malcolm Allen. Portage Online story. Strategy.

 

Building a herb spiral at Oxford School

The ultimate raised bed for herbs; it’s both beautiful and practical in its design. By building the spiral shape you take advantage of an added dimension and you also create different microclimates for various herbs to co-exist in. Adventures in Local Food post.

 

Waves of change: Sustainable Food for All

Food Secure Canada’s 8th National Assembly. Great progress is being made in preparation for our next National Assembly which will be held at the Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel, Halifax, Nova Scotia November 13-16. It promises to bridge food movements on land and sea, to deepen our thinking on food justice and to advance our work on the People’s Food Policy. Over 15 volunteers are currently busy reviewing more than 130 proposals to present at our upcoming assembly. Website.

 

National Conservation Plan Recognizes Farmers’ Stewardship Efforts

In particular, the CFA is pleased to see $50 million allocated to stewardship activity and wetland restoration. “This focus on stewardship and wetland improvement coupled with the stated objective of building on existing initiatives will help farmers increase their contribution to recognized environmental priorities,” Bonnett added. Canadian Federation of Agriculture post.

 

AND IF YOU HAVE TIME

 

Bee-killing pesticides found in “bee-friendly” plants from garden centers across Canada

A new study released today by Friends of the Earth Canada shows that over half of “bee-friendly” home garden plants sold at garden centers have been pre-treated with neonicotinoid (neonics) pesticides shown to harm and kill bees. The Canadian data is part of a larger study, Gardeners Beware 2014, released by Friends of the Earth Canada and Friends of the Earth U.S. with Pesticide Research Institute (PRI). Garden plant samples were collected from top garden retailers from 18 cities across Canada and the United States. Canadian samples were collected in London (Ontario), Montreal (Quebec) and Vancouver (British Columbia). Friends of the Earth Canada news release.

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