Government of Newfoundland and Labrador Prioritizes Improved Access to Healthy Food Through Food System Transformation Initiatives

Press Release

May 23, 2023

Today, the Provincial Government is announcing support of approximately $386,000 to Food First NL. This one-time funding will support Food System Transformation initiatives and advance collaborative efforts through four interrelated community food projects, and will open up opportunities for future investments from national partners.

These community food projects include:

  • Great Things in Store: Working with a cohort of eight food retailers across the province to develop and pilot partnerships and programs that improve food access for lower-income Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.
  • Rethinking Food Charity: Supporting the implementation of recommendations developed through a year-long consultation process that engaged people with a lived experience of food insecurity and food program providers all over the province.
  • Labrador Anchor Collaborative: Expanding and solidifying the work of the Labrador Anchor Collaborative, an initiative (part of a national cohort) focused on strengthening access to traditional foods through the health care system, led by a collaborative team that includes Indigenous Governments and Organizations, health care leaders and community partners.
  • School Food Planning: In line with the federal commitment to a National School Food Policy, Food First NL will support collaboration around planning for future approaches to school food in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Provincial Government has committed to improving access to food through annual operating grants since 2007. The Department of Health and Community Services provides $105,000 to Food First NL annually to advance joint priorities related to food security and improving access to healthy foods.

This Provincial Government investment aligns with recommendations of Health Accord NL, which identifies improved food security as one of several factors that can reduce poverty and lead to better health and well-being for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.

Food First NL is a food security leader in the community and has collaborated with government, communities, and organizations to advance food security in the province for over 20 years.

“Access to affordable and nutritious food is vital to creating healthy communities. By supporting organizations like Food First NL, we’re investing in the health and well-being of all Newfoundland and Labradorians by ensuring food accessibility programming is taking place in our province.”
Honourable Tom Osborne
Minister of Health and Community Services

“Food security is essential to well-being and a key social determinant of health. Working with community partners such as Food First NL helps our government support well-being for individuals and families. This partnership approach is important to creating stronger, more resilient communities and contributes to improved social well-being for all Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.”
Honourable John G. Abbott
Minister of Children Seniors and Social Development and Minister Responsible for the Community Sector

“To move the needle on food security in Newfoundland and Labrador, work needs to be happening all across our food system – with retailers, in schools, in the food charity system, and in health care. This investment will help leverage commitments from national partners and push forward urgently-needed structural change.”

Josh Smee
CEO, Food First NL



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