October 8, 2014
FEEDING HALTON MORE FRESH LOCAL FOOD
Fresh Food Box Project Creates Collaboration for Getting More Ontario Produce to Market
A new project from Halton Fresh Food Box will provide even more opportunities for farms in Halton to bring more local produce to the community with the Feeding Halton project.
With support from the Greenbelt Fund and funding from the Ontario government, Halton Fresh Food Box, working with collaborating partners to create Feeding Halton, will look for opportunities within the Region of Halton to create a local food hub. A local food hub will help with the collection, storage, processing, and distribution of local food and products, making them more available to the people of Halton. Collectively, Feeding Halton’s member programs serve more than 40,000 clients each month in the Region. This project builds on work done by the Region to identify what foods are grown locally.
“Halton continues to be a leader in local food,” says Burkhard Mausberg, CEO of the Greenbelt Fund. “Community organizations such as Halton Fresh Food Box are taking the initiative to create opportunities for local farmers. This is the type of activity the Fund believes in supporting – activity that results in a thriving farming community and economy, all while providing more local food for Ontarians.”
Halton Fresh Food Box’s project, Feeding Halton ($25,000), is unique. Both farmers and local social service organizations will collaborate to provide the growing and changing population with equitable access to healthy food with a growing emphasis on local. It addresses gaps within the local food supply chain by looking for opportunities to use the food processing and distribution capacities already in place within Halton.
"This project explores the opportunities for the Fresh Food Box and the Feeding Halton Collaborative to extend the harvest through value addition and preservation methods," says Brenda Moher, Halton Fresh Food Box, Executive Director. "With support from the Greenbelt Fund, Feeding Halton is creating a win-win situation whereby our social service organizations are putting more healthy food on the plates of at-risk families in Halton year-round and the farmers and food processors have increased opportunities and markets to provide this food."
“Supporting this innovative project will help create new market opportunities for Halton farmers,” says Indira Naidoo-Harris, MPP Halton. “When we support the good things that grow in Ontario, we strengthen our communities, grow our economy, and create jobs for today and tomorrow.”
Grants to Eat Local Sudbury, Food and Beverage Ontario, Ontario Goat Breeders Association, andSustain Ontario were also announced today. For a detailed description of all of these projects, visit Ontariofresh.ca.
Since its launch in 2010, the Greenbelt Fund has supported dozens of projects, increasing the amount of local food purchased across the province. Ontario’s investments in the Greenbelt Fund are connecting more farmers to new markets and putting more Ontario food in hospitals, schools, daycares, universities, and restaurants. To date, we have increased local food sales by $37.8 million—or a seven to one return on investment for every dollar spent.
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.
Phone: (416) 960-0001, ext. 306
The announcement was held at Busy Liz's Farm Shop, Campbellville ON
Indira Naidoo-Harris, MPP Halton
Burkhard Mausberg, CEO Greenbelt Fund
Rick Bonnette, Mayor of Halton Hills; Gary Carr, Halton Regional Chair, Burkhard Mausberg, CEO Greenbelt Fund; Indira Naidoo-Harris, MPP Halton; Brenda Moher, Executive Director Halton Fresh Food Box; Liz Lambrick, Owner Busy Liz's Farm Shop