Food Security

The Vision

Contributing to Temiskaming’s growing local food market along with showcasing and supporting Temiskaming’s local food businesses will build a vibrant local food economy. The Charlton Sustainability Hub will provide education and on-site learning opportunities to community members that will build capacity for greater local food production, including preservation, storage, and distribution that will address food insecurity through resilient practices. As a shared community centre and space, we provide skills training, tools, and resources that can be utilized by the collective to participate in their own food growing.

The Challenge

Food insecurity is the inability to acquire or consume an adequate diet quality or sufficient quantity of food in socially acceptable ways, or the uncertainty that one will be able to do so. According to the Temiskaming Health Unit, 1 in 10 families struggle to put food on the table. This is due to barriers to food access as the Temiskaming region faces harsh winters and long driving distances which can lead to extended periods where households are unable to visit grocery stores or food banks.

Due to the geographical locations, the food supply chain is lengthier for rural communities, resulting in periodic and irregular shipments, raised food prices among communities that, on average, have lower income levels, and stocks of nutritionally depleted food products. Not only does this result in deficient nutrition among households, but those facing food insecurity have poor self-perceived general health, high stress, low life satisfaction, and a very weak sense of community belonging.

Temiskaming District Success Stories

Over the last decade Temiskaming has benefitted from an increase in roadside and civic farmers markets, local food festivals and celebrations. Community shared agriculture programs have increased from 1 available program in 2012 to 5 in 2021. Local abattoirs and meat shops have expanded to meet customer demand and stock their store shelves with an increased variety of quality, regional value-added products.

Interested in building the local food system?