Citing a strong response from across the country, Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Lawrence MacAulay has extended the public consultations on a national food policy until Aug. 31.
“Canadians’ responses to our online survey show they truly care about food issues. I encourage everyone to take advantage of the extended comment period, and I look forward to hearing from a variety of perspectives throughout regional consultations and community discussions. Understanding Canadians’ priorities will be essential as we develop A Food Policy for Canada,” MacAulay said in a release.
The food policy process is designed to set a long-term vision for the health, environmental, social, and economic goals related to food, while identifying actions we can take in the short-term, a federal release says. “We have reached out to Canadians to help shape the policy because we know that by working together, we can build a food policy that is a shared vision to address food-related opportunities and challenges in Canada.”
More than 22,000 Canadians have completed the online survey launched on May 29.
The online survey is one of a number of consultation activities planned to engage with Canadians on this issue.
The federal government also wants community leaders and organizations to continue having food policy discussions in their own regions across the country. A toolkit is now available online that can help organizers host discussions and gather feedback on what matters most when it comes to food policy.
Following a successful food policy summit held in Ottawa in June, the Government of Canada will be holding regional engagement sessions across Canada throughout August and September. Stakeholders, Indigenous groups, experts, and key policy makers will be invited to attend these sessions and share their views on the development of A Food Policy for Canada.
A Food Policy for Canada, which will be the first-of-its-kind for Canada, will help address food issues and pursue opportunities in areas related to four key areas: increasing access to affordable food, improving health and food safety, conserving soil, water and air, as growing more high-quality food.