Food Forward's Food Idol Awards celebrate outstanding contributions by food actionists – among our volunteers, community members, projects, and businesses – focused on healthy food and communities that are inclusive, diverse, ethical, local, and resilient. As the place where Torontonians meet to create a better City through food, we are asking you to help us identify and celebrate new efforts and results that are especially deserving of community recognition.
New this year: We will be awarding the Food Sprouts Grant of $1,000 to a project that advances food justice in Toronto.
Awards will be announced at #foodTOEats, our Third Anniversary celebration on August 7th at Bento Miso. Please see the brief call for nominations for our 2013 awards:
Nominations are invited in the following categories:
Breakout Food Activist Award – Recognizes an individual whose understanding of food policy has led him/her to community organizing or standing up for food justice/good food policy to business, institutions, or government.
Spicy New Venture Award – Recognizes a food-related business or entrepreneur whose recent work has led to the development of a delicious venture contributing significantly to increase good food, food justice, and/or good food jobs expansion in one or more Toronto neighbourhoods.
Sweet New Initiative Award – Recognizes an organization, group, or partnership whose recent work has led to the development of an initiative contributing significantly to increase good food, food justice, and/or community food security in one or more Toronto neighbourhoods.
Food Forward Outstanding Member Award – Recognizes the commitment and contributions of a Food Forward individual member towards our mission, by supporting the design and implementation of our projects, development, capacity, and/or outreach. Also considers independent work the individual has contributed to related good food projects or policies through education, advocacy, and connecting.
Toronto Food Champion Award – Recognizes the commitment and contributions of a community member who has worked hard to advance a better Toronto through good food, food justice, and/or community food security in our neighbourhoods or communities. Their work may have been as a volunteer or employee of an organization, or through their own leadership efforts.
Food Sprouts Grant – A $1,000 grant for a project (for-profit, non-profit, or grassroots) that advances food justice in Toronto neighbourhoods or communities. The successful project may focus on community building, advocacy, job creation or other areas that would benefit from a small grant.
Criteria & Qualifications
The selection committee will be looking for good food work that is practical, visionary, and innovative.
We are considering work that puts a focus on food and communities that are inclusive, dieverse, ethical, local, or resilient). We also recognize contribution of efforts to good food jobs and community economic development in Toronto.
As we recognize new leadership, work on the initiative should have begun or significantly carried out in the last two years.
We know that good food work and non-profit/for-profit lines are blurring across lines of innovation, so please apply to the category you feel your nominee fits best.
Nominators should not nominate themselves or a project they have had a significant role in organizing, except in the case of the Food Sprouts Grant in which we welcome you to apply with your own project. Individuals may make more than one nomination and in any category. Decisions of the committee will be final.
Tzazná Miranda Leal (Justicia for Migrant Workers), Sang Kim (YakitoriBar and Seoul Food Co.), Gail Gordon Oliver (Edible Toronto), Carly Dunster (Carly Dunster Law and 2002 Breakout Food Activist)
Awards will be presented on August 7 at #foodTOEats, Food Forward's third anniversary celebration and awards night. Awardees will receive delicious prizes, congraultations, and positive media/social media coverage from our community.
Tell us briefly about the person or project and how they’ve been successful in their good food work, reflecting on the awards criteria outlined above, and answering the points below
Deadline is by the end of the day, Tuesday, July 23, 2012.
Email your submission to Vivian at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please include the name of the award and nominee in the subject line, and:
- Your name and email/phone contact
- Name of nominee and email/phone contact
- What was the inspiration of the founders to start this project or work? (100 words)
- In what two ways has or will this project/business/person demonstrate a committment to good food, food justice, community food security, or good food jobs? (150 words)
- If you had to choose, what is the single best example of the impact of this project/business/person? (100 words), and for the grant, how will you use the money? (200 words)
- Website/social media and email/phone contact for nominee
A Town Hall presented by Food Forward with support from the Metcalf Foundation
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.
- 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 email@example.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:
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.
The Star: Toronto food cart fight (front page GTA)
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
Global News Toronto
CBC Here and Now (interview Darcy Higgins)
Radio-Canada Champ Libre (interview Sasha McNicoll)
NewsTalk 1010 Jim Richards Show (interview Darcy Higgins)
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: firstname.lastname@example.org