Ontario's Local Food Strategy
Ontario is a strong supporter of local food production and sales. Since 2003, the province has invested more than $160 million in initiatives and projects that help promote and celebrate the good things that are grown, harvested and made in Ontario.
The Ontario government has consulted with farmers, processors, consumers, retailers, foodservice providers and not-for-profit organizations to discuss local food opportunities and challenges.
Based on those consultations, the province developed a multipronged local food strategy, with a clear vision, mission and goals focused on increasing the consumption of local food by bringing more local food to the places where Ontarians shop and eat.
Through a number of ongoing activities, including the Local Food Act, 2013, the government is aiming to:
Vision: To have more Ontario consumers enjoying local food more often - and in more places.
Mission: To increase the consumption of local food in Ontario.
Local Food Act, 2013
The Local Food Act, 2013 is the centrepiece of the province's local food strategy.
In November 2013, Ontario passed Bill 36, the Local Food Act, 2013 to help foster successful and resilient local food economies and systems in Ontario, help increase awareness of local food in Ontario, including the diversity of local food, and develop new markets for local food.
This legislation, the first of its kind in Canada - is designed to help build Ontario's economy, create more jobs and expand the agri-food sector - by making more local food available in markets, schools, cafeterias, grocery stores and restaurants throughout the province.
The Act does this, in part, through the following initiatives:
The ministry is committed to measuring progress on goals or targets established under the Local Food Act, 2013.
We recognizes the excellent work being done by organizations and associations to advance local food in the province and want to leverage these activities to continue the momentum of working toward the objectives of the Local Food Act, 2013.
We will continue to work in collaboration with stakeholders to establish baseline performance indicators for any goals or targets.
Many of these collaborative efforts and activities, along with other key local food initiatives are reflected in Ontario's first Local Food Report: 2014-15 (PDF Version - 757 KB), which was launched on June 4, 2015.
OMAFRA Local Food Supports
The Local Food Act, 2013 is one part of the local food strategy. OMAFRA continues to support local food through additional initiatives and programs, such as:
Additional Ontario Government Local Food Supports
Partnerships and collaboration across the public sector are key to establishing strong local food systems in Ontario. Additional government supports include:
Local Food News and Successes
Premier Wynne promotes local food