Urban Food Strategies is thrilled to announce the publication of Integrated Urban Agriculture (2016). Edited by Robert L. France. Libri Publishing, Oxfordshire, UK. This book includes chapters from seventeen of North America’s preeminent authors and scholars on urban agriculture and urban food systems.
Comment from an anonymous, expert reviewer of the MS draft: This is an exciting interdisciplinary approach by a well-coordinated, closely working team. The book is accessible, well written, free of jargon, and full of pictures, graphics and charts. In all fairness, this is one of the most exciting and innovative books on urban agriculture I have seen in recent years. It combines original papers and commentary/reflections to them which make it a perfect candidate for class discussions. This volume is as much about imagining urban and urbanism as urban agriculture. In this sense people in social sciences, urban studies, environmental studies, architecture and urban planning will find this book very useful. This is an exceptional international, interdisciplinary, expert dream team. Many of these authors have already been recognized as key contributors to this literature. However, the way the book is designed — as a conversation among a group of scholars, thinkers, authors — allows fresh new insights and adds vibrancy to this volume. It is not a simple how to do UA book. It is a thoughtful book about re-imagining urban living, urban livelihoods, urban culture through urban agriculture. This is a fun book. If I would keep a few books on urban agriculture in my personal library this is definitely one of them. It is the outcome of a workshop and went through many edits and commentaries. It is ready to go. I would consider this as a key contribution to urban agriculture, urban design, planning and agricultural urbanism.
After decades of front line, emergency food distribution, food banks are increasingly taking a critical look at their work. As chronic and persistent food insecurity continues to increase, many food banks are now looking to different, longer-term strategies which better focus on serving the long-term health, social justice and resilience of the individuals and communities they serve.
To better understand the landscape of this work, the Greater Vancouver Food Bank contracted Urban Food Strategies to convene other food banks undertaking similar shifts in an exploratory research project. The report, ‘Social Innovation in Food Banks: An Environmental Scan of Social Innovation in Canadian and US Food Banks’includes candid interviews with 18 food organizations from across North America on their work, and presents a continuum of socially innovative practices in the sector.
We hope this report will help to continue to grow the food bank community of practice by supporting knowledge sharing and collective action.
This report will be the subject of a panel at Food Secure Canada’s ‘Resetting the Table’ conference in Toronto, ON, from October 13th – 16th, 2016.
To access the report, please click here
On April 13, 2016 our project team lead by Greenchain Consulting and including Sustainability Ventures, Urban Food Strategies, and TRU Consulting, publically launched a feasibility study for a food market in downtown Kamloops. This project was convened by Community Futures Thompson County, Farm 2 Chef, The Southern Interior Beetle Action Coalition and the Kamloops Regional Farmers Market.
The recommended market model included permanent and temporary food vendors, cafe, brew pub, production/incubation kitchen, teaching and learning space, and outdoor market space. The project team used best practice research and input from stakeholders to develop a concept and high-level business plan that tested the initial feasibility of a food market. Under a set of conditions, it was found that the market is indeed feasible and met all but one of the feasibility criteria.
For more information on this initiative and to access the report please visit Community Futures Thompson County
Drawings and illustrations shown here have been produced by Anne Marie Whittaker at Modus Planning and Design with direction from Janine de la Salle at Urban Food Strategies.
Food isn’t just about what we eat. Eating is only one part of a vast and highly complex global system that grows, processes, packages, markets, and ultimately discards food. Regrettably, today’s industrial food system is failing not only our communities, but also our environment and our bodies. But there is an alternative recipe for food systems—a sustainable one—that promises to bring food and agriculture back into our communities so that they’re more vibrant, vital, and healthy for everyone. Drawing from leading literature and best practices from across North America, this course will explore the many dimensions of mobilizing community food systems including: food politics, food and farming in BC, urban agriculture and farming, regional food economies, food hubs, healthy built environments, food in design, public policy and food systems, food recovery and waste, transitions in food banking and the charitable food sector, food justice, food democracy and the right to food, food culture, and indigenous food systems.
SCD 410 E100, Summer 2016
May 9th to June 20th (Intersession)
Tuesdays and Thursday 5:30-9:20pm
Harbour Centre 2205, 515 West Hastings Street
Questions? Contact email@example.com
Mobile fresh markets (MFM) are an emerging social innovation for increasing access to healthy food. While mobile markets are clearly not a new invention per se, using MFMs as a strategy for increasing food access in low income, food insecure areas is a new approach. MFMs have been increasing in popularity in the US for the past five years and are beginning to make an appearance in Canadian Cities. Follow the file link below to download a 2 pager that summarizes what MFMs are, how they operate, and strategies for developing financial break-even models.
Financial Snapshot of Mobile Fresh Markets in North America
Also, very exciting, there is currently a job posting for a mobile market operator in Vancouver BC: The Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society is seeking a Curbside Fresh Market Operator to join our team for a seasonal, contract position. The ideal candidate is an outgoing, food savvy individual that is interested in helping increase access to healthy food in key areas throughout Vancouver. The Curbside Fresh Market Operator is an energetic, people person, comfortable in liaising with a broad range of populations and a passion for making a difference in the community.
Full job posting at: https://www.foodbank.bc.ca/sites/default/files/gvfbs-csfm-contract.pdf
The Healthy Built Environment Linkages Toolkit is a groundbreaking evidence-based and expert-informed resource that links planning principles to health outcomes. Urban Food Strategies, among other leading provincial experts on the healthy built environment (HBE), contributed to its development. The Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) released the Toolkit in April 2014.
The HBE Toolkit can be downloaded at: http://www.phsa.ca/NR/rdonlyres/E952D4B0-D83B-494C-9DEF-6EFB37D9AA63/69547/LinkagesToolkitFINALApril8_2014_FULL5.pdf
In an article published by the New York Times March 12th, agriculture-oriented neighbourhood developments, or agrihoods, one 160 acre organic farm in Arizona gives developers something to think about.
Read the full article at: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/12/dining/farm-to-table-living-takes-root.html?ref=dining&_r=1
Local food economies are one of the areas of greatest untapped potential for local governments. In an article by Janine de la Salle, David Van Seters and Jeanette Southwood the topic of how local food enterprises are inspiring examples of a new generation of jobs and economic prosperity that communities can capitalize on and nurture is explored. behas been published in the fall edition of Municipal world (Vol 123, no 9).
In 2012, the City of Edmonton initiated and completed a process to develop a comprehensive food system plan for the city. Unlike any other food system strategy that has been developed in North America, the Edmonton plan was directly linked to growth management and new development planning that was occurring in the City. In addition, the plan looks at opportunities in all areas of the City and has five goal areas spanning economy and health to placemaking and environment. As a result of extensive public and stakeholder consultation, technical analysis, and leading-edge policy development, the City now has one of North
Americas leading food system strategies.
HB Lanarc Consultants, represented by Janine de la Salle and Rob Barrs, were the lead consultants working with the City on developing Fresh. The team developed background material and analysis, facilitated stakeholder discussions, and developed draft goals and policies.
Congratulations to the City of Edmonton for taking the road less travelled and providing a leadership example of what Canadian Cities can accomplish towards sustainable urban food systems.