Tag Archives: healthy food

Visualizing the Future of Health Care and On-site Food Production

For three years, Project SOIL has used case studies, pilot projects and visioning sessions to investigate the viability of on-site food production at public institutions, through collaborative arrangements with local food producers.

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Check out our final report!

Over that time, interest in food production on public land has continued to grow, with schools and universities, health care institutions and seniors residences, community food centres and food banks, as well as public agencies—from conservation authorities to crown corporations—making land available for food production.

Are you an engaged staff member, or an administrator at a public institution, who is interested in the idea of establishing food production or food gardens on-site? This research has established a baseline of preconditions, useful practices, potential barriers and positive adaptations—for a diverse set of institutional and community settings—that will allow project leads to envision how their idea would come to fruition, and build a compelling case.

Maybe you’re part of a community where public institutions control a significant amount of land, and you would like to develop a strategic vision that includes food production? Community groups, farmers, and organizations supporting urban agriculture, food security and food justice can use the information contained in the research report to identify what has worked in a situation similar to their own, and present this evidence to build a compelling proposal for their institutional partner.

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Or maybe you’re a policy-shaper—working with new and young farmer training organizations, or advocates of sustainable health care reform, sustainable urban agriculture practices, or community resilience in the face of climate change—to illustrate the potential of positive alternative strategies to build new collaborative partnerships with multiple, and often unanticipated, synergies and benefits.

Project SOIL has built strong relationships with community and institutional leaders that will continue to innovate and collaborate in the pursuit of the beneficial synergies that spring up when you grow food on public land.

Our final report, “Ontario Public Institutions and On-site Food Production: Visualizing the Future for Health Care“, is available now. Please share widely!

From Local grains, Nutritional Benefits!

From Ag Innovation Ontario, the story of the Spruits, local producers who turn grains into superfoods:

…Last year, they grew 26 acres of heritage grains and are especially excited about two of them. The first is a hull-less barley, developed in Canada, which has half of the gluten found in wheat and high levels of beta-glucan fibre, vitamins and minerals.

The second is a non-GMO purple corn with origins in ancient Peru. When ground, it produces whole grain flour that is both a gluten-free alternative to wheat and has double the antioxidants found in blueberries. Too often, she said, people with gluten allergies will turn to substitutions that have little nutritional value.

And just as unfortunate, she noted that “so many of the superfoods that people are buying are imported from other countries”. The grains that the Spruits produce solve both issues – superfoods with high nutritional values that are grown “right here at home”.

Four products – Purple Corn Flour, Purple Corn Meal, Beta-Glucan Barley Flour and Barley Berries – are available commercially. Spruit has been promoting the line within culinary and health networks, and many restaurants and bakeries in the Ottawa area are now incorporating the flour and corn meal into their products.

Read more

Champlain LHIN and the Healthy Foods initiative

Winchester hospital hungry for gold after reaching ‘Healthy Foods’ milestone

Seaway News, July 15, 2015

When it comes to providing better food choices, it seems Winchester District Memorial Hospital is the picture of good health. WDMH became the second hospital in eastern Ontario to reach the bronze level in the regional ‘Healthy Foods in Champlain Hospitals’ initiative. The initiative aims to reduce unhealthy food and beverage choices in the hospital’s cafeteria, vending machines and gift shop. Read more

Pembroke Regional Hospital signs on to healthy food program

Daily Observer, May 14, 2015

The Pembroke Regional Hospital (PRH) has voluntarily signed on as one of fifteen participating hospitals in the Healthy Foods in Champlain Hospitals program and is well on its way to completing the program’s first level of requirements and achieving a Bronze designation.

The Healthy Foods initiative was developed to create a supportive, healthy food environment for patients, visitors, staff, physicians and volunteers by providing better food options in hospital retail settings. Read more

Arnprior hospital praised for commitment to healthy eating

Inside Ottawa Valley, March 19, 2015

Arnprior Regional Hospital (ARH) has become the first of 15 hospitals participating in the Champlain Healthy Foods in Hospitals program to reach the Bronze designation – a full year ahead of the target date. “Congratulations to the team at Arnprior Regional Health for its commitment to improving the health of our community,” said Champlain LHIN CEO Chantale LeClerc in a news release. “I am extremely proud that hospitals in our region are modeling healthy eating to the thousands of patients, visitors, staff, physicians, and volunteers they serve. The Healthy Foods in Hospitals initiative will go a long way to helping a very large number of people stay healthy and avoid disease and the Champlain LHIN is pleased to support its implementation.”

The Healthy Foods initiative is about creating a supportive, healthy food environment for staff, physicians, visitors, patients and volunteers. Read more