Minister Bibeau re-opens the Local Food Infrastructure Fund with over double the funding this year for projects to improve food security in communities across Canada
July 9, 2021 – Ottawa, Ontario – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Today, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, announced a top-up of $10 million for the Local Food Infrastructure Fund, which will re-open for applications on Monday, July 12. With this additional funding to address pandemic-related food security pressures, the Fund is supporting $23 million in projects in 2021-22.
The new application intake will provide rapid-response grants valued between $15,000 and $100,000 to help prevent hunger through investments in infrastructure needs. Project impacts must be targeted, immediate, and directly related to addressing food insecurity and increasing the accessibility of healthy, nutritious and ideally local foods within the community.
The Fund supports community-led projects that strengthen food systems and help to facilitate access to safe and nutritious food for at-risk Canadians. Since it was first launched in August 2019, the Fund has already committed $27 million to support over 625 vital food security projects across Canada, such as: community gardens and kitchens; refrigerated trucks and storage units for donated food; greenhouses in remote and northern communities; and more.
The additional top-up of $10 million is part of the Government of Canada’s commitment to provide continued support to emergency hunger relief organizations, who have faced significant challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as higher demands and fewer resources.
“Because of the pandemic, even with the important benefits our Government put in place to support those who lost their incomes, our food assistance organizations have seen a spike in demand. On top of the $200 million in emergency assistance already allocated to these organizations over the past year, the Local Food Infrastructure Fund is supporting these incredible Canadians by enabling them to acquire equipment that is essential to providing food services to those who need it most.”
- The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
According to Statistics Canada, one in seven Canadians indicated that they live in a household where there was food insecurity over a one-month period during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Applications for the new intake will be accepted from July 12, 2021, until August 13, 2021, depending on funding availability. Eligible applicants are not-for-profit organizations that have been in operation for at least two years, or Indigenous groups.
The Government of Canada is also delivering the $200-million Emergency Food Security Fund by providing funding to national and regional organizations, which in turn support food banks and local food organizations across Canada, to help improve access to food for people experiencing food insecurity due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Budget 2021 outlined an additional $140 million to help emergency hunger relief organizations prevent hunger, strengthen food security in our communities, and provide nutritious food to more Canadians.
Originally a $50-million initiative, the Local Food Infrastructure Fund was launched in August 2019 under the Food Policy for Canada, a roadmap for a healthier and more sustainable food system in Canada.
The Food Policy for Canada will help advance the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, including to end hunger, promote good health, reduce food waste, and encourage sustainable transformation of the food system.
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
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