May 2013

May
28

Local food challenge: can good food make a sustainable sector?

A Town Hall presented by Food Forward with support from the Metcalf Foundation

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The local food sector is pushing forward with increased sales, innovation, and jobs. But along the way, significant challenges face businesses that are expanding with local and sustainable food.

 Food Forward is hosting an important dialogue on the barriers, challenges, and strategies for the viability of the sector and its small and medium enterprises, while we explore opportunities to learn and grow. We will hear from speakers with great experience in making good food work, and want to hear from attendees with ideas, concerns, and strategies for action.

 Speakers:

-  Lesia Kohut, Eco-Pastry Chef & Social Entrepreneur, LPK's Culinary Groove

- Don Mills, Family farmer and President of Local Food Plus

- Ann Barnes, Co-Founder of Mum’s Original Superfoods

- Len Senater, Owner of The Depanneur

- Amy Cheng, Farmer and Owner of Red Pocket Farms

Moderated by Vanessa Ling Yu, Founder of FoodSpokes

You’ll enjoy this panel if you’re:

A food entrepreneur or business person looking to learn + share

Work for government, non-profit, foundation, or association interested in supporting the sector

- A member of the public or local food advocate looking to support change and take action

What: Panel discussion with time to connect

When: 7:00PM-8:30PM, Thursday, June 13

Where: Room 310, Metro Hall, 55 John Street, Toronto

Please: RSVP a quick note to info@pushfoodforward.com

Will accept a pay what you can contribution towards our Jobstarter Food Entrepreneur Training Program

Refreshments provided. Wheelchair accessible. Please contact Food Forward regarding other accommodations. Door prize from Bumpercrop!

Let folks know you're coming: Facebook event + Tweet with #foodTO

Thank you to our sponsors:

METCALF FOUNDATION


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May
16

Our fruit stands up to authority

Wednesday was a busy day with Food Forward members setting up a simple food cart as an example of something common in other cities but not allowed here.

The City told media that its report on street food would now in come in Spring 2014. The report was ordered by City Council for Fall of 2011. However, staff and councillors are working on a pilot for this summer under existing regulations.

See the previous blog below to email your councillor to ask for action. Join our CSA to help us keep advocating.

Media attention:

The Star: Toronto food cart fight (front page GTA)

CTV Toronto: Adding healthy food to curbside fare live at noon, and evening news

Toronto Sun: Illegal food cart protest to hit City Hall and Toronto's street food by-laws protested

CBC Toronto News at 6: Street food fight

24 hrs (front page)

Toronto Metro: Sweet! Free fruit for all has passerby stoked

NewsTalk 1010: Illegal fruit stand used to push for better street food

National Post: Advocacy group hands out fruit in front of City Hall to protest limits on Toronto food trucks

CBCnews: Group wants city to approve more diverse food carts

CP24

CBC Radio

Global News Toronto

CP24

AM640

CBC Here and Now (interview Darcy Higgins)

Radio-Canada Champ Libre (interview Sasha McNicoll)

NewsTalk 1010 Jim Richards Show (interview Darcy Higgins)

 

May
3

Are we ready for street food YET?

 

Torontonians lining up for street food in Grange Park at the Pop-Up Picnic

Thousands of Torontonians wrote city councillors a year ago to ask them to allow diverse street food to be allowed in Toronto. While the City allowed existing hot dog vendors to expand their menus, new carts and trucks are still not allowed to sell outside of event permits, and existing ones are facing all sorts of extra rules and costs.

A City Committee told us and the Toronto Street Food Project to be patient after we offered a few practical changes that would have allowed food on our streets last summer. They said a report to change policies was due in November, but nothing has come. While we realize staff may be busy, these changes can't draw on forever. Will entrepreneurs and eaters miss out on another summer? 

Please e-mail your councillor again (with your address) to simply ask what they've done to legalize street food, and ask if we can't work together to make something happen this summer to animate our sidewalks, streets, and parks. Our friends at Cycle Toronto have a nice guide of your councillors' contacts and to find your ward: http://cycleto.ca/e-mail-your-councillor

Let us know what they say: info@pushfoodforward.com