Nelson group says safe, healthy, locally grown food could develop economy


Anonymous. Alaska Highway News. Fort St. John, B.C.: Jul 29, 2008. pg. A.3


(Copyright 2008 Hollinger Canadian Newspapers Limited Partnership)

A group in Nelson has told city council the community needs to create its own thriving local food system that's available to everyone regardless of income.

John Steinman, spokesman for Community Food Matters, says safe and healthy food that's grown using environmentally and socially responsible practices should be a key priority for the city.

He told councillors the local food movement has garnered attention across the country and that the provincial governments of Nova Scotia and Manitoba have contacted him to give presentations on developing local food economies.

Steinman says many of the projects involving Nelson and area residents are breaking new ground in the way Canadians get food on their plates.

Under the Grain Community Supported Agriculture Project, for example, local residents buy shares in grain farming operations in Creston and after the harvest, the grains are divided up among shareholders.

Steinman, host of a nationally syndicated radio show called Deconstructing Dinner, says it's the only operation of its kind he's aware of in Canada and one of only a few in North America.

"It's creating a revolutionary model for how to grow grain locally."

He said that's better than major chain grocers stocking their shelves with whatever head office in a far-off city may decide to bring in, with no connection to the local community.