Healthy food tops agenda for new councillors

As a new Council prepares for its December start, getting better food
on people’s plates has emerged as a priority for many new and incumbent councillors this
term. Solutions addressing food insecurity, health and sustainability have become widely
discussed as food centres, community gardens and food entrepreneurs continue to sprout
up across Toronto.

“I am excited by the number of councillors interested in healthy food and that it will
finally be getting Council’s attention,” said Darcy Higgins, Executive Director of Food
Forward. “Support for urban agriculture was a highlight of many successful candidates’
election platforms. Food Forward will be advocating to advance solutions,” he said.

Bureaucratic barriers and limited approvals have been the norm for community projects.
The City is working to remedy this through the Toronto Food Strategy, a comprehensive
approach to food policy which was passed unanimously by the Board of Health earlier
this year, which is expected to come to Council for broader support and implementation.

“I am impressed by the work of the Toronto Food Policy Council,” said Kristyn Wong-
Tam, Councillor-elect for Ward 27. “I welcome the opportunity to work with residents
and businesses to address general concerns about improving healthy food affordability
and accessibility in our distinctive neighbourhoods,” she said.

The newly elected Councillor in Ward 32 shares Wong-Tam’s interest.

“I am looking forward to working hard to promote urban agriculture in our great city,”
said Mary-Margaret McMahon. “I plan to work with residents to create more community
food gardens in Ward 32 as our current gardens have long waiting lists. Starting the
East Lynn Farmers' Market with my neighbours has been a wonderful and educational
experience. It is now a dynamic community hub promoting Ontario farmers,” she said.

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