Local food movement agency expands nationally


Local Food Plus, a non-profit agency that certifies farmers who meet a rigid set of environmentally- and animal-friendly standards, is going national to strengthen local food economies across Canada.

Local Food Plus links certified farmers with local buyers to strengthen the local and regional supply chain.

Ontario was used as a pilot and LFP has become influential in the local food movement there so now the focus has turned to building the local food economies of British Columbia, Manitoba and Quebec.

The national expansion is funded by the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation, a Montreal-based philanthropy group.

LFP has a list of certified producers that offer an alternative to the large North American food distributors.

The agency has been the main reason that numerous high-end restaurants, municipalities, learning institutions and hospitals have been able provide locally-farmed food.

According to LFP calculations, some small shifts to purchasing local food can result in a large economic and environmental impact.

For example, essentially the environmental impact of two cars could be taken off the road for an entire year in Toronto by replacing one 10-tonne truck filled with California-grown produce with Ontario-grown food (from within 200 km of Toronto).

In economic terms, $5.2-million would shift directly into local economies instead of imported goods if 10,000 families in a province used $10 per week to support local.

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