Survey Template – Economy

What will you do to support local food and farm enterprises within your municipality?

Specifically, which of the following strategies will you support if you are elected:

  • Work with your planning department to increase enabling policy and zoning for important economic drivers such as:
    • farmers’ markets (new and established)
    • on-farm processing and value-added products
    • commercial kitchens and other food business incubation facilities
    • food hubs and other models for the pooling and distribution of local food
    • food trucks and/or mobile food markets
    • urban agriculture
  • Work with your economic development, tourism and/or planning departments to better promote agricultural and food-based enterprises in your region by supporting:
    • the development and maintenance of a buy-local map
    • the creation and scoping of a regional brand
    • online tools to connect purchasers with producers
    • culinary and agricultural tourism tours and festivals
    • farmers’ markets (new and established)
    • other
  • Work with purchasing/supply management departments and your municipally-run or funded institutions (such as cafeterias, convention centres, caterers, child care centres, and long-term care facilities) to increase the procurement of locally produced and processed foods (from within the region and Ontario)
  • Work with your economic development department to assess and address barriers to local food distribution, processing and storage businesses within your region by:
    • Conducting baseline research such as a Business Retention and Expansion study or Asset Mapping Report to better understand the regional food system stakeholders and landscape
    • Working with local training institutions and unions to address training gaps and labour shortages
    • Investing in spaces for business incubation (eg. commercial kitchens, farmland incubators)
    • investing in and/or supporting a regional food hub feasibility study
  • Reduce “red tape” for farm and food enterprises by:
    • Working with public health to ensure food inspections are consistently applied, outcomes-oriented, open to dialogue and flexible to diverse approaches in achieving food safety
    • Encouraging increased cooperation and coordination across departments to streamline approvals/regulatory requirements for farm and food enterprises
    • Helping enterprises better navigate municipal requirements and regulations

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See related Economic Rationale and Examples.

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