Toronto has long been known as home to a wealth of innovative sustainable food projects.
The city's government, institutions and community organisations are helping to support the food growing efforts and the enthusiasms and energy that exist to move urban agriculture forward.
The Research Institute is also collaborating on a series of research grants funded by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture (OMAFRA) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), led by Alison Blay Palmer and involving a wide range of stakeholders and academics from across the Province. A new partnership grant to continue the work on researching the development of food hubs (over 170 are being studied across the province) is also progressing.
Work is also progressing with colleagues in Canada to build a network for the proposed FLEdGE (Food: Locally Embedded, Globally Engaged) Partnership that builds on the on-going Nourishing Ontario project.
This research partnership has been evolving since 2007, over the course of several projects. The latest project builds on two years of collaborative work that developed an inventory of community food initiatives in Ontario, and explored their efforts and effects in multiple ways.We are exploring research synergies, and the comparative and collaborative opportunities around sustainable food system governance, scaling up, land tenure issues and community resilience. Through case study and Participatory Action research we will be able to identify opportunities for communities as they figure out how to do things more sustainably. Links have also been initiated with people in civil society, private enterprise and government.