federal election


5 Year Update: #FoodIdol winners and more

Hello Food Forward Friends,

We hope you’re enjoying the final weeks of summer and the bounty of seasonal produce that is flooding the Farmer’s Markets throughout this vibrant city. 

We're getting in touch to let you know about upcoming Food Forward milestones and to share with you some of the latest news items that are worth celebrating!

Sweet Successes!

  • Food Forward’s Building Roots initiative was named one of 10 Agents of Change by the Centre for Social Innovation (CSI) in February to support its growth into a social venture.
  • Hosted about 50 memorable events from Etobicoke to Malvern, helping to deepen and connect the food movement across the City
  • Improved the Local Food Act and municipal food policy, including street food and local food, and showing how you Can make change at City Hall
  • Set an agenda for food justice in the City supported by our Mayor and endorsed by thousands of Torontonians

Congratulations to the Food Idol Award Winners


On Wednesday August 26th, Food Forward presented their annual Food Idol Award’s at the #2hot4kitchen – Woman’s Food System and Food Idol Awards and Community Festival in Regent Park. 

For information on the winners of the #2Hot4Kitchen Women's Foods System Awards, keep an eye on: www.2hot4kitchen.com

We would also like to recognize volunteers, partners, and community members that work every day in Toronto building and creating health food communities that are inclusive, diverse, ethical, local, and resilient.

Food Forward Outstanding Member – Patrick Tohill

For over a year Patrick has stepped in, rolled up his sleeves, and put his communication and advocacy experience to work for good food change. He has helped build our positive connections, strengthened our communications, and advanced our Food Nation campaign. Thank-you Patrick! @Patrick_Tohill

Toronto Food Champion – Moorthi Senaratne 

Moorthi has ensured hundreds of thousands of Torontonians have access to fresh, affordable and culturally diverse food. His great success and invaluable contributions stem from his deep understanding of the power of food as a tool for community development and of the long-term impacts of supporting local and global producers. @FoodShareTO

Toronto Food Champion – Antonio Andrew 

Antonio is celebrated for his long-term commitment to food democracy, intersecting community and business, and - quote-unquote - “doing the right thing.” He has most definitely done the right thing by the initiatives he’s taken part in, from the innovative Riverdale Food Working Group to making lower-profit food markets viable. The Market at Eastview would not be viable or able to donate unsold produce to their food bank without his intelligence and strategy skills. @riverdalefood

Lifetime Achievement Award – Sang Kim

Real life stories are the ingredients that make Sang’s recipe for change so successful. One of Food Forward’s very few Honourary Lifetime Members, Sang is passionate about kids and food, and he is always ready to help the next generation learn and grow (and cook!).  His work is dedicated to local and global communities, ranging from kid-focused Sushi Making For the Soul to teenage-mother focused One Pot Many Stories. Sang has always supported Food Forward, providing guidance for our advocacy and support for our events, and is always there to speak and encourage. @koreanjohnsmith

Lifetime Achievement Award – Sunday Harrison

For many years, Sunday's has advanced the growing food and justice initiative in Toronto, raising key issues of equity, race and diversity before others would. From starting Green Thumbs Growing Kids in 1999 to using gardening to transform schools to introducing a program for youth to develop life skills and sell food, Sunday has been an active, dedicated and encouraging presence in Toronto - and will continue to be so for years to come. @kidsgrowing


Upcoming Events

“Food is a Human Right” presented by Black Creek Food Justice Action Network 


Toronto Food Networks Summit

Presented by Food Forward, North Toronto Local Immigration Partnership, and Flemingdon Health Centre

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Thursday September 17th 9am-4pm

Register HERE for Free! 
*We encourage anyone involved in a neighbourhood food network to sign up!


Food Secure Canada is making food an election issue! – Eat, Think, Vote

The government elected in the October 2015 Federal Election should work with others to ensure that the right to food becomes a reality for Canadians who are food insecure: Let’s Make Food Matter to our Politicians! Food Forward recently called for action on this agenda in the federal election at #2Hot4Kitchen in Regent Park. Join us in the Eat Think Vote Movement Now!

Did you know that Food Forward has our own Food Nation campaign, which is municipally focused, and has overlap with the Eat Think Vote platform, check it out here and sign on if you haven’t already!

Volunteer with us!

As Food Forward grows and distributes our efforts, there are key roles we need to fill to keep the organization going and growing, as an active grassroots group. If you’re interested in volunteering, especially in a key Membership or Fundraising role, please email us at info@pushfoodforward.com with the word VOLUNTEER in the subject line and brief description of your interests in food and related organizational skills. 

Thank you,

The Food Forward Team!


- Stephanie Conroy, Internal Communications Manager


Voting Food in St. James Town

St. James Town is unique in its density and population but has similar food security problems as many communities across Toronto and across the country.

by Darcy Higgins

Yesterday on my way home, I ran into a community member I recognized from St. James Town, who was asking for change, and I stopped to chat. “Hunger is a big problem,” she told me, after we discussed my advocacy work.

Residents of St. James Town have often felt ignored by different levels of government when it comes dealing with issues that matter to them. But they are also very self-reliant, reacting head on to difficulties and a deficiency of resources with community spirit and innovation.

Disparities in hunger and nutrition are being addressed with on the ground discussions and projects in community food security. The work in this and nearby neighbouhoods by L.I.F.T., Green Thumbs Growing Kids, Youth4Health, UforChange and support from groups like Evergreen and FoodShare have helped with these issues, while also enhancing meals, greenspace, education and community building.

Many solutions are being explored and implemented in these community projects with an increasing growth of young leaders in food projects and related work.

Read more: http://stjamestown.ca/2011/04/15/48/


Food Now on Plate for All Federal Parties

For the first time national food policies, from GM seeds to school lunches, are part of five parties' platforms.
By Colleen Kimmett, Yesterday, TheTyee.ca

Voters are hungry for food policy. All five federal political parties apparently think so, given that each of them has made a national food strategy part of their platforms this election. It's a first, and food advocates across the country are pleased to see it.

Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff was out front, and now the NDP, Conservative, Bloc Quebecois and Green parties have followed suit with their own promises to support a Canadian food policy in some form or another.

Many developing countries, after all, including Brazil, India and Bangladesh already have long-term policy goals and plans around food security.

Last year the governments of Britain and Australia committed to developing national food strategies and the call for a similar plan here in Canada has been growing from a chorus of diverse interests: farmers, industry, consumers, social justice non-profits, environmental NGOs and academics. 

They all agree on one thing: in the face of global food shortages, climate change and a growing world population to feed, Canada needs to have a national discussion about food. What is much less clear is what should be included in a national food strategy, and how the federal government should pursue it.

Read more: http://thetyee.ca/News/2011/04/12/FoodOnPlate/


Voting with our stomachs

Discuss and act!
What's your food vision for Canada? What problems need solving and what policies should we put in place?

Time to ask the candidates in your riding what they think about the need to change food policy, and more importantly, what they'll do for food in Toronto.
Share this video with them - email, tweet, post to their Facebook pages, and ask for a response.
Share any responses, who you've asked, and your concerns here in the comments.