The long and the short of it: Motivations and realities for food hub actors in Ontario, Canada


In this new publication, Nourishing Communities researchers Alison Blay-Palmer, Erin Nelson, Phil Mount and Mike Nagy add depth to the results of the annual province-wide food hub surveys that you’ve seen on these pages over the last several years.

Drawing on more than five years of research into food hub innovation in Ontario, Canada, this chapter explores the limits to the aspirations of food hub actors in both logistical and structural terms. Specifically, the authors report findings from a 2015 survey of more than 185 food hub-related innovators as well as 22 case studies in Ontario.

While the goals for those working to develop sustainable local food values chains are in keeping with principles of fair, green, healthy and local food they are limited by a lack of resources including financial, infrastructure and network capacities. This chapter looks to both the Basque region and Scotland’s Good Food Nation approach as examples that can help to create more fertile ground in Ontario by providing models of scale appropriate policies that offer more financial resources, build relationality, and strengthen networked capacities for food hub innovation.

This chapter is part of Localizing Global Food: Short Food Supply Chains as Responses to Agri-Food System Challenges, the latest publication in the Routledge series Studies in Food, Society and the Environment.

Please contact the authors with any questions.

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