Local food project passes major milestone
Mohawk releases research report on bringing local food to Ontario college campuses
HAMILTON, ONTARIO: Mohawk College today released a research report identifying a set of common challenges to local food procurement in the Ontario college system. The report, titled Increasing Local Food Procurement at Ontario’s 24 Colleges: The Evolution of Campus Foodservices, lays out a series of opportunities and proposes key actions to support increasing local food at colleges across the province.
Coinciding with the release of the report, Mohawk is issuing a call for applications from other Ontario colleges to participate in on-campus pilot programs designed to address challenges to local food procurement by replicating and validating models established at Mohawk, and by creating new solutions that respond to the research findings. The results of the pilot projects will be made available to all Ontario colleges and broader public sector institutions.
“Increasing the amount of local food served on Ontario college campuses is an important opportunity for colleges to better serve their students and communities. By offering more local food options, colleges can improve student satisfaction, support campus sustainability and enhance their regional economic impact.”
“Mohawk College’s leadership to bring more local food not only to their own students, but to tens of thousands of students at colleges across Ontario is outstanding. At the Fund we work to empower local food leaders like Mohawk College and provide funding to get projects off the ground and get more local, Ontario food on our plates.”
“Through to our government’s Local Food Investment Fund, we are making it easier for post-secondary institutions, like Mohawk College, and their students to buy and consume fresh food that is grown, harvested and made in Ontario. Thanks to our government’s support, Mohawk College will be developing the first provincial local food procurement model for Ontario colleges. I invite Ontario colleges to submit an application and participate in this pilot project, a key first step in increasing local food availability on campuses across the province.”
- In 2016, the Greenbelt Fund, in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, provided Mohawk College with $100,000 in funding through the Local Food Investment Fund (LFIF) to develop the first provincial local food procurement model for Ontario colleges.
- The project is comprised of three phases: industry research; pilot projects; and the development of the local food procurement framework.
- The research report marks the completion of the first phase of the larger project.
- The research report and results of the pilot projects will inform the draft local food procurement framework that will be presented at a research summit this fall.
- The final framework is due to be released in early 2018.
Mohawk College educates and serves 30,000 full-time, part-time, apprenticeship and international students at three campuses and two City School locations at the Eva Rothwell Resource Centre and the Central Public Library in Hamilton, Ontario. Mohawk has ranked first among all Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area colleges in student satisfaction for seven consecutive years and first in graduate satisfaction for the past five years. Mohawk ranks 15th among all colleges in Canada for applied research activity and has been named among Canada’s greenest employers and the region’s top employers for the past three years.