Eat Think Vote: Second edition

Eat Think Vote is a pre-election campaign, gathering community members across Canada to dialogue with federal candidates ahead of the upcoming election. Our goal is to make sure food is an election issue, and that the incoming government develops policy that encourages a food system that is healthy, sustainable and just.

 

 

ETV 2015

In 2015 ahead of the federal election, thousands of Canadians took part in the Eat Think Vote campaign to make food an election issue. These events brought together community members and candidates running for federal office, gathering them over a meal to discuss the food issues affecting their communities in the day-to-day. From Iqaluit to Québec City, from Vancouver to Halifax, people from across the country came together to tell politicians that we needed good food for all.

ETV 2015 in numbers:

69 events across the country

192 organizations hosted events

4461 individuals participated

164 candidates participated

44 candidates elected

5 promoted to Cabinet

Based on the grassroots engagement process in developing A People’s Food Policy, local food activists once again showed that they wanted to engage with policymakers, and policymakers saw that civil society had important perspectives to bring to the table.

What did we want in 2015? The campaign called for a bold new national food policy that delivered on the following asks:

In the end, the campaign was a tremendous success, leading to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau mandating the incoming Minister of Agriculture, Lawrence MacAulay, to develop a national food policy for the first time in Canadian history. Recognizing that food is a multifaceted, complex issue, FSC also urged the government to work in tandem with other federal departments (e.g., Health Canada, Northern and Indigenous Affairs, Employment and Social Development), as demonstrated in this open letter to Minister MacAulay.

Because of FSC’s work with members, collaborators, and community members across the country, today Canada is on the cusp of its first national food policy.

 

ETV 2019

This year, FSC is organizing the Eat Think Vote campaign to once again make sure that food is a major election issue. Starting in summer 2019, events will take place in community organizations, collective gardens, farmers markets, healthcare centres, schools, and many other gathering places.

With the imminent launch of the new food policy, let’s make sure that the incoming government commits to building a food system that is in the interest of all Canadians and where no one goes hungry.

 

How to get involved

Eat Think Vote gathers a wide diversity of organisations and partners, united in their agreement to work together to build a more a more healthy, sustainable and just food system.

Organisations can get involved by doing one or several of the following:

  1. Organizing an event in their community
  2. Providing policy leadership in the area of their expertise
  3. Making a financial contribution to the campaign

1. Event host

  • Agrees with the general goal of a sustainable, just and healthy food system in Canada
  • Organizes an event that includes the following elements: provides food or a meal; invites candidates from all major political parties; invites community members, especially those from marginalized or underrepresented groups; facilitates discussion
  • May work alone or with other organizations and actors in their community
  • Takes charge of their event’s logistics and promotion, with help from the FSC team and toolkit
  • Conducts a modest evaluation of their event and reports back to the FSC campaign manager

2. Policy expert

  • Contributes to developing backgrounders on food issues, including a highlight of current policy solutions. These backgrounders will help event hosts across the country to engage in well-informed conversations with their candidates
  • Acts as a national spokesperson on a specific topic or policy solution
  • Reaches out to their own networks, inviting them to organize or participate in an event

3. Funding partner

  • Contributes funds to the campaign, maximizing the campaign’s reach and amplifying the voices from local events
  • Funding partnerships will be recognized on the Eat Think Vote website

 

How to get involved in Eat Think Vote 2019

  1. If you or your organization would like to organize an event, contribute financially or act as a policy expert, contact rachel(at)foodsecurecanada.org
  2. If you would like to participate in an event, sign up for our newsletter.

 

 

Further reading

What was each party’s position on food during the 2015 election? Read our summary of their party platforms here.