Mapping the Food Policy Landscape in Canada

Thursday, August 3, 2017 - 1:17pm

Mapping the Food Policy Landscape is Canada is the result of a research collaboration between Food Secure Canada and Food: Locally Embedded, Globally Engaged (FLEdGE), led out of Wilfrid Laurier Universities’ Centre for Sustainable Food Systems.

The intention of this policy scan, presented in a series of six themed papers, maps and summary tables is to inform and contribute to a conversation on building a national food policy in Canada that addresses the inter-related issues of hunger, health, and sustainability.  Current policies at the municipal, provincial/territorial and federal level are explored under each theme. This ‘food policy landscape’ provides examples to draw from- like farm to cafeteria pilot projects or hunter support programs - that effectively reconcile the three goals. By identifying good practices, we are able, in some cases, to delineate some of the gaps and obstacles to scale up and scale out policy efforts.

From these policy scans and discussions it is clear that the existing agri-food policy landscape in Canada is highly complex, uneven and dynamic.  A variety of different initiatives, policy and programs are being piloted at various levels of government, while troubling gaps remain in certain policy areas and regions. The challenge is to ascertain how these policies might be better connected together, networked and joined-up.  A national food policy provides one such opportunity. While it will not bring whole-scale change overnight, it has the potential to be a first step in a longer process of building a more integrated food policy landscape in Canada, one that moves our food system towards to goals of equity, health and sustainability.  

Click on the links below to read the Discussion Papers and explore the Policy Maps and Summary Tables. These papers and the policy maps that accompany them are intended to be living documents that will require updates and revisions in the months and years to come.  Additional feedback and suggestions for edits are welcome and can be provided by emailing

Sustainable Agriculture

School Food

Local and Sustainable Food Systems

New Farmers

Indigenous and Northern Food Sovereignty

Food (In)Security