agmJoin us in celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the Kamloops Food Policy Council on Wed, May 6th.  See the poster for further details  AGM_Poster15

The Real Estate Foundation came to town, and asked a few of us Kamloopsians what we thought of the food system here in the Interior. So we told them! Here is the summary report from that discussion.

Interior Summary Report 01.08.2015

The Real Estate Foundation has a wonderful grant program that funds many food security/sovereignty projects across the province, so it was an amazing opportunity to tell them about what we need here in the Interior’s food system!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
 
Let’s Talk: Food and Urban Agriculture Plan – Harvesting Our Potential
             
Kamloops, BC – The City is working on a Food and Urban Agriculture Plan and wants to hear from you.
 
What is the Food and Urban Agriculture Plan? Urban hens, farmers’ markets, community gardens, virtual food hubs, composting, edible landscapes, gleaning, backyard sharing, community kitchens, gardening techniques that conserve or reuse water, and much, much more – come on out and share your ideas on anything to do with local food and urban agriculture.
 
There are several ways to provide input on the plan:
 
Attend an Open House:
These events will feature activities, informative posters, online and hard copy surveys, live music, and local food demonstrations.
                                  
·         Saturday, January 31st, from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm at North Hills Mall near the Extra Foods entrance. Entertainment will be provided by Johnson Sandwich.
·         Saturday, February 7th, from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm, at the lower level of Aberdeen Mall. Entertainment provided by Margit Bull.
 
A Kamloops-exclusive, Chef David will be participating in a Black Box Food Challenge at the Open Houses. Audience members will choose from a selection of black boxes that hide locally-grown food items. Chef David will then have 20 minutes to prepare a gourmet dish with this mystery item and share with audience members. Learn about local food production while watching the sweat on the chef’s brow as he tests his talents to beat the clock.
 
Contact Your Community Association:
We want to meet with you where you are. If there is an interest in providing input into the Food and Urban Agriculture Plan in your neighbourhood, please discuss with your community association and ask that they contact City staff to arrange a meeting.
 
Complete the Online Survey:
Go to the City’s Food Security webpage at www.kamloops.ca/letstalk and click on the on-line survey link. Leave your name and contact information to be added to the stakeholder contact list, and entered into a chance to win one of four $150 gift certificates from the garden centres at Art Knapp or Lyons!
 
The public engagement phase for the Food and Urban Agriculture Plan will run through the end of February. More information on the plan can be found at:www.kamloops.ca/foodsecurity.
Media Contact:
Carmin Mazzotta, Social and Community Development Supervisor
City of Kamloops

Exciting news, Kamloops has been chosen as one of the three provincial Farm to School Regional Hub! This means that more local food will be working its way into eight of our local schools! To do that, we are looking to hire a part-time Community Animator in the Kamloops region to develop a Farm to School Regional Hub, including the formation of a Steering Committee and eight new Farm to School programs. Spread the word far and wide, the deadline to apply is December 16, 2015!

Job Description: Kamloops Farm to School Regional Hub Community Animator

BACKGROUND

Established in 2007, Farm to School BC (F2SBC) is a diverse and expanding provincial network that promotes, supports, and links F2S activity, policy and programs across the province.

Farm to School (F2S) programs bring healthy, local food into schools, and provide students with hands-on learning opportunities that foster food literacy, all while strengthening the local food system and enhancing school and community connectedness. F2S empowers students and school communities to make informed food choices while contributing to vibrant, sustainable regional food systems that support the health of people, place and planet.

At this time F2SBC is preparing to grow the number of Farm to School programs across the province and develop F2S Regional Hubs in three urban centres. The development of the three Regional Hubs will help foster collaboration and collective impact at the regional level.

The Regional Hub Community Animator will enable and facilitate the development of a Farm to School Regional Hub in the Kamloops Region. The role of the Animator will be to build capacity and resilience within the community around Farm to School, unleashing the creativity of the community and schools in the region to sow the seeds for long term Farm to School success.

To further strengthen the governance of the Kamloops Food Policy Council, a strategic plan is being developed.  This plan articulates who we are as an organization, what we wish to accomplish, and how we wish to undertake our tasks.  This document will provide a general guide to our organization for the next 5 years.  In addition, it will provide the context for more detailed annual plans which will guide our activities on a year to year basis.

The KFPC board has drafted a Vision, Mission and Strategic Goals for our organization.  Now we need to hear from KFPC members.  Are we on the right track?  Did we leave something important out?

Please review this document kfpc_strategic_plan_nov14_draft and provide comments by email to dave.whiting@shaw.ca by November 28.  It is the intent of the board to bring a strategic plan to the membership for approval at a general meeting in 2015.

The Food Policy Council encourages our members to complete the short, online survey that can be found here.

It’s important that KFPC members help shape the future of this sizeable public land mass that has considerable agricultural potential. For background information visit here.

What do you think about the expansion plans for the Tournament Capital Ranch? Since some of the land is part of the ALR, there are ideas about supporting sustainable farming on the ranch, including incubator farm for new farmers and an agriculture trade show and events center. We like those ideas!

Talk to the city at the farmers’ market booths on August 6 and 9, at an open house on August 14, or through their online survey. Go to the city’s website for more information.

Kamloops Food Policy2

We were successful in receiving a $2500 grant from the Kamloops Foundation back at the end of June. The grant continues to promote Urban Agriculture with a major emphasis on Social Enterprise.  We will be partnering with GAP (Gleaning Abundance Program) and Gardengate, as participants will be exploring what social enterprise can come from the gleaned fruit. (In the photo: Mike Simpson (far left) is Senior Regional Manager with the Fraser Basin Council here in Kamloops.  Dave Whiting (second from left) represents the Fraser Basin Council at the KFPC.  Mike and Dave received the cheque on behalf of the KFPC.)

What’s ‘social enterprise’? KFPC’s Social Enterprise in Urban Agriculture (SEUA) will receive excess harvests from gleaning, public produce, backyard sharing, farmers markets, local farmers, and the food bank and food share and transforms the fresh produce into healthy, and often organic, by-products in the form of baked goods, dried and canned goods as well as prepared soups and meals.

These new products are prepared and cooked by newly trained employees, who before had difficulty finding and keeping meaningful employment. The SEUA both supports urban and local farmer/growers as well as the efforts of citizens to capitalize on urban agriculture opportunities that will benefit those most in need of assistance for affordable, fresh local produce and other food products – the working poor, single parent households and those on fixed and limited incomes including seniors. The SEUA is a marriage of social action and the promotion of healthy lifestyles while at the same time creating good paying sustainable jobs in the not for profit sector.

Partners involved in the plan: First Nations, City of Kamloops, Food Bank and Food Share, Kamloops Farmers Markets, Interior Health Authority, Interior Community Services (community kitchens and community gardens), and the Kamloops Food Policy Council member organizations (like the Gleaning Abundance Program).

Total project budget? $25,000. We are on our way ladies and gentlemen!

Check out the link below to hear this morning’s interview with Sandra (the new coordinator) about the Gleaning Abundance Program (GAP)!

http://www.cbc.ca/player/Radio/Local+Shows/British+Columbia/ID/2473593897/

Laura_Kalina

Laura Kalina, the current president of the Kamloops Food Policy Council has received a national innovation award from the Dieticians of Canada.

Congratulations Laura!  Your leadership and innovation has long been recognized in Kamloops and region.  Nice to see you being recognized at the National Level by your professional organization.