Local Food More Accessible in Ottawa

February 20, 2014

LOCAL FOOD MORE ACCESSIBLE IN OTTAWA

 

More Fresh, Healthy, Local Food Accessible in Ottawa Thanks to Natural Gourmet Fine Food Kitchen Inc.

An innovative project from Natural Gourmet Fine Food Kitchen Inc. means increased access to fresh, healthy, local food for the people of Ottawa.

With support from the Greenbelt Fund, and funding from the Ontario government, Natural Gourmet will provide market opportunities for small- and medium-sized producers in the Ottawa area with the creation of the Ottawa Food Hub.

“Ottawa’s enthusiasm for local food initiatives shines. This project means helping local producers and in turn local institutions and foodservice operations gain access to more Ontario grown food. This shows we are making systemic change in order to put more local food on our plates. The result—more local food for Ontarians and a happier, healthier community,” says Burkhard Mausberg, CEO of the Greenbelt Fund.

The Ottawa Food Hub: Setting Up for Success ($186,500) project, will see Natural Gourmet partner with Just Food to launch the project, which will expand on the groundwork the partners have completed over the past two years in order to provide institutions and foodservice retail operations with more local product.

“This project shows great leadership in our community by Natural Gourmet and Just Food. Our government is proud to support projects like these because they promote nutritious local food that supports our farmers, families, and economy,” says Phil McNeely, MPP for Ottawa-Orléans.

“We are focused on increasing access to good food while supporting the urban and rural economies in and around Ottawa. Creative solutions are being developed by a growing list of partners, including the Greenbelt Fund. With Just Food, we will support the scaling up of local food production, and assist connections with restaurants and retail outlets, as well as Ottawa’s school breakfast programs, hospitals, and universities,” says Paul Gorman, owner of Natural Gourmet. 

For a more detailed description of this project and other grants that are a part of the Greenbelt Fund’s Regional Food Grant Program, please visit Ontariofresh.ca.

Since its launch in 2010, the Greenbelt Fund has supported 78 projects with funding totalling $7.4 million, increasing the amount of local food available across the province. The province’s total investments toward broader sector programming means a targeted return of $38.9 million in additional Ontario food in daycares, schools, universities, and colleges—or a five to one return on investment for every dollar spent.

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About the Greenbelt Fund:
The Greenbelt Fund, a non-profit organization, supports and enhances the viability, integrity, and sustainability of agriculture in the Greenbelt and Ontario.

The Fund delivers support to farmers and local food leaders to ensure more of the good things that grow in Ontario are being served and distributed through our public institutions, retail, and foodservice markets. Helping to overcome challenges and support economic growth, the Fund’s goal is to create systemic change to permanently increase the amount of local food consumed in the province through grants, education, policy, and networking initiatives. The Fund is supported by public and private sources. For more information about the program and grants visit Ontariofresh.ca. For more information on local food visit foodlandontario.ca.

For more information about the Ontario government’s new Local Food Act and broader local food strategy, visit the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food website.

Contact:
Jennifer Asselin     
Communications Manager   
Greenbelt Fund    
Phone: (416) 960-0001, ext. 306   
jasselin[at]greenbeltfund.ca   

Grant Information

Natural Gourmet Fine Food Kitchen Inc. Ottawa Food Hub: Setting Up for Success ($186,500)
Natural Gourmet Fine Food Kitchen Inc. will partner with Just Food to bring regional and Ontario food to both retail and foodservice markets by launching the Ottawa Food Hub. This will be accomplished through the aggregation, processing, packaging, and distribution of foods from the Ottawa region, backed by Ontario product when local is unavailable.