CRITICAL TO BUILDING SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES IS A STRONG, RESILIENT AND INCLUSIVE FOOD SYSTEM
As cities continue to grow, it is becoming increasingly important to determine
how to ensure that all community members have access to affordable
and locally sourced foods.
OUR FOOD SYSTEM IS IN A CRISIS
Many people are not aware of where their food comes from. Strong communities can only be achieved through access to affordable and nutritious food.
Food waste, food security, a lack of young farmers entering into the agricultural industry and poor land management have put many
communities in a precarious situation. This will only be exasperated by severe weather events caused by climate change.
Food Waste + GHG
1.3 metric gigatons of edible food goes to waste every year and at least 795 million people are undernourished worldwide. Food waste is also a large contributor of Greenhouse Gases, mostly in the form of methane, a pollutant at least 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide.
Health + Well-being
As our food choices have moved toward convenience and cost over freshness and quality, our food and health have suffered. By buying in bulk and frequenting inexpensive fast food outlets, we are eating much more than previous generations and still getting less nutrients. These choices are key contributors to obesity, diabetes, and consequent cardiovascular diseases.
The Generational Gap
According to Canada's census in 2011, 56.4% of Ontario farmers were above the age of 55 and only 9.5% were less than 40 years old. With larger barriers to entry, such as increasing farm sizes and costs, who will feed our cities?
Lack of Opportunity
Young farmers interested in starting their own businesses are faced with increasing expenses and decreased quality of accessible farmland.
Poor Land Management
Prime agricultural land within close proximity to urban populations is under threat from suburban development.
WHAT No.9 GARDENS WILL DO
Through hands-on learning and education, No.9 Gardens will provide opportunity and access that will
allow for the development of a global model for creating local sustainable food systems.
Local + Diverse Farming
No.9 Gardens will focus on supplying the local community with a variety of fresh produce, as well as educating students and visitors from the general public on the techniques of diverse farming.
Organic + Hands-on
Working in harmony with nature, No.9 Gardens will be an organic certified agricultural facility. Physical activity and hands-on workshops will allow for students and the general public to better connect with their natural surroundings, retain knowledge, and benefit their health and well-being.
In partnership with the Dunin-Deshpande Queens Innovation Centre and the St. Lawrence College School of Skilled Trades and Tourism, No.9 Gardens will provide many opportunities for farmer apprenticeships, workshop activities, and farm management programs. Through these opportunities, young farmers will be better prepared to enter into the agricultural industry.
People don't have access to education when it comes to growing their own food. No.9 Gardens will offer the appropriate facilities, equipment, experiences and educational opportunities to provide access to this knowledge.
Policy + Development
We need to develop new policies that will protect valuable agricultural land so that we can help local farms feed the growing demand from our cities. Municipalities and institutions need to employ local food procurement policies to provide the economic structure required to support local farming. These policies will also contribute to economic development in rural areas surrounding our urban populations.
No.9 Gardens is currently working with its partners and elementary schools in Brockville and Kingston to develop workshop and field trip opportunities for the spring of 2019. Updates coming soon!