The Squamish Food Policy Council (FPC) was established in November 2015.
The council is made up of 17 different organizations and community groups, representing different perspectives on food in our community.
Our goals are to bring diverse stakeholders together, identify gaps and barriers to developing a resilient food system, identify strengths and opportunities for improvement, engage and educate the community on food issues, while developing and executing key projects and initiatives.
Our first goal is to ensure Squamish’s Official Community Plan (OCP) incorporates food policy, and after the plan is complete, work with the District to amend zoning and bylaws to support these statements. We are in the midst of 4 phases for the OCP planning process and the FPC has been working directly with our municipal planners to provide input and strategic direction to ensure all parts of our food systems are taken into consideration in drafting the plan.
After integrating food policy in the OCP, the FPC will develop and execute projects to strengthen the Squamish food system. We have identified 8 themes with the FPC that we would like to address in the coming years:
1. Amend zoning and bylaws to support farming
2. Connect land owners and affordable land to farmers (identify available land owned by the municipality, and land in the Flood Hazard Management plan that could be used for farming)
3. Expand Infrastructure to support food (processing/storage/food rescue/food hub/farm infrastructure)
4. Permanent infrastructure for a year-round farmers market
5. Increase food education and skill sharing
6. Reduce food waste
7. Preserve existing land for future farming opportunities
8. Share our experience with others in the region and BC through our partnerships with Vancouver Coastal Health, BC Food Systems Network, and the Whistler Centre for Sustainability (Squamish to Lillooet Regional Planning)
Throughout these actions, we will achieve the Squamish Food Charter (attached) principles, which are: Community Economic Development, Ecological and Human Health, Social Justice, Collaboration and Participation, and Celebration.
Stay tuned for upcoming public events for you to have a say on the future of food in Squamish.
For more information, contact Krystle tenBrink at firstname.lastname@example.org
Watch this video created by some wonderful Quest University students about our Food Policy Council!