Canada invests in food security for communities in British Columbia

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

All Canadians, regardless of where they live, deserve to have access to affordable and nutritious food. Today, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, announced an investment of up to $2 million from the Local Food Infrastructure Fund for 38 projects across the province of British Columbia. This funding supports community-based and not-for-profit organizations in their efforts to provide rapid responses to food insecurity issues.

During a visit to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank‘s Burnaby location, Minister Bibeau toured the 40,000-square-foot warehouse which includes a kitchen, refrigerator and freezer space, and volunteer lounge, where she learned about the organization’s support of community food security. Food bank representatives also showed Minister Bibeau pictures of the new walk-in fridge and freezer installed at the downtown Vancouver facility, made possible by a Local Food Infrastructure Fund (LFIF) grant of up to $98,687. This community project has increased cold food storage capacity by 3,400 cubic feet, which allows the food bank to provide more fresh fruits, vegetables, meat and other frozen products for Vancouver residents in need than ever before.

Every region has its own unique challenges when it comes to food security-this is especially true for Northern and remote communities. In Canada’s North, food prices can be significantly higher than in the rest of the country. Factors such as isolation and socioeconomic issues make northerners particularly vulnerable to food security challenges. These challenges have reinforced the need for long-term, community and regionally-based solutions.

The newest phase of LFIF, announced on March 23, 2022, is set to open for application intake on June 1, 2022. This phase of the Fund has been tailored to meet the needs of Indigenous, Northern and remote communities by providing funding to help them build a food system that will meet both current and future community needs. Funding of up to $20 million is available over the next two years for eligible projects that must be infrastructure-specific, community-driven and dedicated to improving access to healthy, nutritious, and local foods for Canadians at risk of food insecurity. For example, a project could help expand a community harvest program to include traditional methods for transforming food and distribution. Grant funding for projects can range from $100,000 to $500,000 to support larger initiatives that will have a lasting impact in communities.

Program details and requirements are available now, and applications for this intake phase can be submitted from June 1, 2022 until July 15, 2022.

The Government of Canada is committed to working with community-based food security organizations to ensure they have access to the necessary tools that help them to meet the increasing and immediate needs of people experiencing food insecurity in Canada.

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