During Local Food Week this June, the Greenbelt Fund announced over $1.5m in new investments in projects across Ontario to increase the the purchase of local food.
Investments ranged from increasing the local field-grown produce sold in Subway sandwich shops during the harvest season, to launching a local food hub in Temiskaming, to developing a daily meal sourced entirely from Ontario products for Dana Hospitality's broader public sector clients.
At Mohawk College, CEO Burkhard Mausberg announced funding for a project that will work to increase local food procurement not just at Mohawk College but at colleges across the province. The returns on these investments are tremendous. As Minister Leal noted at Mohawk College, for every $1 the Greenbelt Fund has invested in local food projects, a return on investment of $13 has been realized. That's more money staying in Ontario's economy and in the pockets of our hard-working farmers and growers.
We had the chance to meet some of those hard-working farmers at Cross Wind Farm - a beautiful goat farm in Keene. Cindy and Kevin Hope used their investment from the Greenbelt Fund (along with a significant contribution of their own capital!) to expand production at Cross Wind Farm and grow their market. Cross Wind specializes in artisanal goat cheeses, chevre meat, and unique products like goat milk body butter. Cindy and Kevin are up at the crack of dawn (and often earlier) working hard on their farm and bringing products to farmers' markets throughout the region. Supporting their work is what the Greenbelt Fund and Local Food Week are all about.
Learn more about all the grants and the Local Food Investment Fund and make sure to buy more local, more often.