Local Food News — Canada

Local food strategy aims to boost Yukon production

The Yukon Government has created a local food strategy, hoping to increase production in the territory. The plan outlines programs and policies the government hopes to enact over the next five years. “They’re looking at more programs, and trying to help the farmers with more funding,” said Lou Clark, who was acclaimed as president of the Yukon Agricultural Association this week. CBC News story.

 

Is local food good for farmers?

Canada’s social sciences council is investing $2.4 million in local food research. Blay-Palmer is director of the Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ont., where she explores the big questions around sustainability. Those big questions include social justice, a factor rarely considered in mainstream ag research. For her, looking into economics means not only farm incomes, but also migrant labour, access to affordable food, and what she calls food “re-localization,” or “closing the loop” — to retain as much money as possible in the community. Country Guide story.

 

New website TopFeed to connect P.E.I. food buyers and sellers

The goal of TopFeed is two-fold, said Murphy: make local food more accessible to Islanders, and help small-scale producers grow their clientele. CBC News story.

 

Nova Scotia Food Summit pushes local food

This week marks the first Nova Scotia Food Summit. Event organizers say the summit responds to a mounting need to overhaul our “broken” food system—paying homage to local food and wrangling some much needed support for an agriculture sector in crisis. From Sunday through Tuesday, supporters, thinkers and curious folk alike will congregate at the Old Orchard Inn in Wolfville to talk about restoring a sustainable food system. The Coast story. Website.

 

CitiGrow preps next level of ultra-local food to downtown Winnipeg

Downtown Winnipeg is about to be introduced to the next level of local food. CitiGrow, a company that has built a network of micro-farms in the city, is introducing food box subscriptions. Over the past two years, its produce has been sold to local restaurants. This year, for $37.50 weekly, subscribers will be able to pick up a box of enough food to feed a family of four for a week. The food will be coming from 22 of micro-farms in and around Winnipeg. Winnipeg Metro News story.

 

Scaling up Through Food Procurement Learning Labs

Newfoundland, a province known as The Rock, is not known for its farmland but is known for its culinary creativity and for making the most of resources on the edge of the Atlantic.  When the School Lunch Association, a charitable school food service provider on the Avalon Peninsula, decided to join the local food movement, they knew there would be obstacles. Local food procurement Learning Labs provide an innovative way to navigate these types of obstacles. These Labs, modelled after those of US School Food FOCUS, bring together key stakeholders to articulate their vision and goals. Participants then agree on a handful of priority actions that can realistically be accomplished in a short time frame. Farm to Cafeteria Canada post.

 

Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries bets on local food

Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries doubled the amount of local food it bought to serve in restaurants at its two Winnipeg casinos’ restaurants this year, now dedicating 25 per cent of its annual $4-million food budget to local food purchasing.The uptake of local food purchases means increased demand from companies like Notre Dame Creamery Ltd. to supplying the corporation an additional 600 pounds of butter, adding over $60,000 to the milk processors’ annual revenues. Manitoba Co-operator story.

 

Manitoba Food Processors Association rebranded as Food & Beverage Manitoba

As a non-profit organization, Food & Beverage Manitoba is an advocate for the support of Manitoba’s homegrown food businesses. The food and beverage industry throughout Manitoba is already the most abundant in the province. Food & Beverage Manitoba deals with a wide array of businesses, both local start-ups and multi national organizations, along with everything in between. MyToba story.

 

Will CETA trade away Canada’s local food systems?

Both CETA and the TPP include a highly problematic investor–state dispute settlement process, for example, which will multiply the number of corporate lawsuits challenging public policy that Canada already faces under NAFTA. But only one of these new deals (CETA) encroaches worryingly on the ability of provinces, municipalities and other public institutions to favour domestic food and support national farmers in public procurement contracts. Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives post.

 

Real estate speculation threatens future of Metro Vancouver farmland

Real estate speculation of local farmland has passed the “tipping point” and is the leading threat against building a sustainable, job-producing regional food system, according to Dr. Kent Mullinix, director of Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Institute for Sustainable Food Systems. “To put it quite bluntly, the provincial and federal governments have allowed this huge influx of wealth to come in here and it’s skewed the market; it’s blown it out of the water,” said Mullinix. Richmond News story.

 

AND IF YOU HAVE TIME

 

5 food and beverage categories losing market share — an analyst perspective

Amid industrywide fluctuations due to consumer needs and regulatory changes that are in a state of flux, market share loss is weakening manufacturers in key portfolio categories. Analysts from Euromonitor and Mintel shared with Food Dive five categories showing a decline in market share. Food Dive story.

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