March 18, 2019 - Our Government for the People is removing red tape barriers and
opening the door for local food in the broader public sector, to make it easier
for organizations like colleges, universities, hospitals and municipalities to serve
Jeff Yurek, MPP for Elgin-Middlesex-London today congratulated Minister of Agriculture,
Food and Rural Affairs, Ernie Hardeman, on a recent announcement to help local food
businesses across the province flourish through establishing a new goal under Local
Food Act, 2013.
"I am thrilled that our government continues to demonstrate its support for agricultural
producers in communities like ours in Elgin-Middlesex-London," said MPP Jeff Yurek.
"Local food is a key aspect of our daily lives, our economy, and our rural identity,
and we should promote it at every opportunity."
"For consumers, local food is at the heart of our agri-food industry. Opening the
door to the broader public sector for local food procurement is part of our government's
plan to strengthen Ontario's local food economy," said Minister Hardeman.
Hardeman announced a number of tools that can help farmers, food distributors and
public sector organizations put more Ontario food on our plates. The government
is taking several steps to support this goal, including:
- Launching a series of new case study videos, featuring best practice advice from
different broader public sector organizations
- Creating a new, interactive, local food hubs map that connects local food businesses
to potential new markets
- Providing easy-to-use tracking tools to measure procurement so organizations can
set their own goals to increase their use of local food and track their success
- Awarding public sector institutions that achieve their local food targets with certificates
of recognition from the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs
- Making it easier to use the
Foodland Ontario logo to promote local food
- Offering government-led how-to webinars for agri-businesses wanting to become a
local food vendor
- Continuing to promote local Ontario food through the Foodland Ontario program
- Looking at options to enhance the farmers market as part of its review of the Ontario
- Ongoing consultation with farmers, distributors and the broader public sector on
red tape barriers in the local food economy.
An important part of the Local Food Act, 2013 is increasing awareness for Ontario
food and beverages. This includes celebrating public sector organizations that are
increasingly using local food to serve their employees, students and patients. The
government will recognize and celebrate public sector organizations that set and
achieve their own local food targets.