Fruit trees and Food Nation at #SummerFoodKickoff

Do you think Toronto's next Mayor and Council should create a better city through food?

Food Forward is presenting Food Nation! This time at the University of Toronto as part of the #SummerFoodKickoff with our partners.

Come learn about the movement that brings Food Justice to Toronto and find out ways to get involved in the most exciting election campaign in Toronto at out Food Nation Town Hall

What: Learn about food justice and how to tackle it in Toronto. Discuss and get involved.

When: 1-2PM Friday April 25th

Where: East Common Room, Hart House (7 Hart House Circle/Harbord Street)

Let people know you're coming!
Spread the word on Twitter (#FoodNationTO), Facebook, and endorse our platform, volunteer or donate: Join Food Nation.

But Wait, there's more!

A very exciting project from our partners at Transition Toronto...

Treemobile is pretty much the day-time version of the Batmobile. Instead of delivering rough street justice, it delivers food justice and climate justice. Instead of seeking revenge on crime, it’s working toward repairing damage done by December’s ice storm. 

Through Transition Toronto’s Treemobile project, Torontonians with a place to plant can order food-bearing trees and shrubs online and the Treemobile will deliver them on the weekend of April 26th*. 

With just a few clicks, you can have a plant that will provide you with delicious apples, cherries, pears, raspberries, goji berries, hazelnuts, plums, or any of the other varieties available. The Treemobile website also provides guidance on which plants are appropriate for your situation, and how to give your plant the best chance of growing from infancy to food-bearing maturity. 

Aside from providing you with beautiful, tasty food, the Treemobile project has plenty of benefits for you and Toronto. Bearing locally produced food means fewer food miles and lower grocery bills. As saplings and young shrubs ready to grow, the plants delivered will take carbon dioxide out of the air and store it where it’s not going to harm alter the climate. Trees can also shade and cool properties, reducing summer air conditioning bills, and new trees are just what Toronto needs to replace some of the beautiful tree canopy that was lost in the ice storm. Left over Treemobile stock will be donated to community properties to provide food for all. Treemobile is great for you, for Toronto’s environment, and for Toronto communities. It’s everything Transition Toronto wants a project to be.

The Treemobile project is designed to minimize cost barriers, with the most expensive item being $42, and the least being $5. (DON’T FORGET TO CHOOSE A DELIVERY OPTION, at most an additional $5 charge, with pick-up being free!). This is not a for-profit project. We just want to see more trees in the ground and more accessible, local, healthful food in Toronto.

If you want to see the same, and want your own extremely local food, go to and choose the right plant for you. 

*If the planting site is in the delivery zone. Otherwise, plants can be picked up at one of three locations in Toronto. Also, if the ground doesn’t de-frost early enough, delivery may occur on the weekend of May 3rd.


Agak, Agak, Hawk! Stories & Street Food

On Friday, August 9th the Chop Suzies Collective invites you to engage in the food stories that rarely make the headlines. Welcome to a Regent Park food story – Agak, Agak, Hawk!: Stories & Street Food. Sit around a circle and eat elbow to elbow with us. Interact through ingredients as we rollout tales and salad rolls, mash-up sauces, and mix among art, song, and dance together. 

Also featured will be the graffiti corridor of unique vendors from community caterers, to street food sellers, and established restaurants enthusiastic to be hawking delicious dishes alongside anecdotes about the women who have inspired them along the way.

Time: 4:00pm to 8:30pm, there is no admission fee. 

Place: MDC Partners Couryard beside Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas St East

For more information on Facebook

Food Forward loves street food and the opportunities it brings. This is a unique event we are excited to be part of!


Workshop: planning for success in your good food business

This year, Food Forward is expanding our Food Entrepreneur Training Program to offer a series of workshops to provide budding entrepreneurs with practical training, lessons, and education in different aspects of starting and running a good food business. Future workshops will focus on different aspects of planning, including financing, marketing, product development, and regulations.

Our first workshop of the year in partnership with the Sustainability Network and sponsored by The Big Carrot, will offer an introduction to developing a business plan by David Alexander from the Everdale Organic Farm and Environmental Learning Centre who facilitates award-winning business training. This will be followed by facilitated discussions and problem solving with other start-up food businesses, with time for meeting and connecting

If you're thinking of starting a small business, or you're off the ground running and want to do some planning & get some ideas, this workshop is for you. It's especially suitable for food business ideas that focus on healthy, culturally diverse, local sustainable food, or social development. 

You will leave with:

- an understanding of the aspects needed to develop a business plan

- resources and readings on starting your business

- connections to opportuntities for business planning, and food business experience of several kinds

- networking opportunities to connect with like-minded entrepreneurs and foster potential business relationships

- Food Forward membership for information on future events, promotion and collaboration opportunities

Time: 6:30-9:00PM, Monday, March 4

Location: Whole Connector Room (first floor), CSI Spadina, 215 Spadina Avenue

Registration: Cost is $25. 

$5 for Supporting Members/monthly contributors

To register, please fill out the online form HERE and make your payment by paypal or mailing a cheque. You may also inquire at or calling Darcy at 416-459-9975.

Snack to be provided.


Not Just Talk - getting to the roots on Feb16

Tanya Fields is a woman who inspires me these days.

Her work with the BLK ProjeK is the kind that empowers people and communities - in particular, underserved women of colour - to take back control of this broken food system and lead with the change they want to see.

It was because of this type of food movement work, most likely, that she was invited, and then uninvited to be a featured speaker at TedXManhattan: Changing the way we eat. Her organzing on good food and food jobs in the Bronx is bringing hundreds together while creating positive change. It shows the difference a person can make while giving it what you've got, and developing some skills and ideas with the community.

An open letter from Tanya to the organizers regarding the dis-invite was when the issue and Tanya's work came to my attention. An apology and reconcilitation note later came, with the hope of focusing on stronger attention to issues of food justice and race using a critical lense. A food movement that doesn't focus on realities of economies, poverty, racism, or privilege isn't much of a movement at all. 

Their vision for a way forward could in fact be a model for those working in Toronto as well:

"The consequences of and responses to this action have provided a powerful message about how fundamental issues of race, representation, cultural divide and fear affect our work and must be addressed, respectfully and honestly... We are determined to harness the power and commitment that was so clearly expressed and use it as fuel for positive solutions as we move forward."

After the invitation was revoked, Tanya went ahead to organize an event Not Just Talk: Food in the South Bronx, at the same time as TEDxManhattan. Organizers of each, however, will now be attending each others' events and sharing dialogue.

So here in Toronto, Lettuce Connect with the Academy of the Impossible is co-hosting a viewing party of the Ted talks on Saturday February 16th - there I'll say a few words on my learning on the ability to likewise expand food justice work in Toronto. Meanwhile, we have the Live Stream details from Tanya to view Not Just Talk from the winterty comfort of home. Both run all day, and it should be easy to catch some of either or both events.

Our food connections and diverse work need strong community roots. 

Check out the details of these events, as well as Canadian Organic Growers' conference the same day, and let's all have a weekend of practical learning together.

Darcy Higgins, Executive Director of Food Forward can be reached at

Learn about the Growing Food & Justice Initiative .