Central Algoma Food for Everyone (CAFFE) promotes emerging opportunities in local food processing

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The Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (SSMIC) is proud to announce the launch of Rural Agri-Innovation Network’s (RAIN’s) Central Algoma Food for Everyone (CAFFE) project.

Central Algoma Food for Everyone is currently a one-year pilot project, with hopes of continuing for three years. This project, partially funded by a $75,000 Ontario Trillium Foundation grant, aims to proactively address hunger among low-income families and individuals, while increasing opportunities for enterprise development and expansion.

The project is being led by the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (SSMIC) and it’s Rural Agri-Innovation Network (RAIN) in partnership with North Channel Poverty Network (NCPN) to collaborate with North Channel communities and organizations, including:

Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (Rural Agri-Innovation Network)
Algoma District Services Administration Board
Algoma Public Health
Child Care Algoma
Johnson Farmers’ Market
The Corporation of the Municipality of Huron Shores
Township of MacDonald Meredith Aberdeen Additional
St. Joseph Island and Area Food Bank
Township of St. Joseph

“This project brings together farmers, organizations, food businesses and North Channel communities around emerging opportunities in food processing,” states David Thompson, RAIN Project Coordinator for Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre. “The project will provide opportunities for food processing and will explore the long-term development of food processing infrastructure.”

There are three components to the CAFFE project, beginning with environmental scanning — a scanning process that identifies opportunities and threats in a given community. The CAFFE project is seeking to identify current activities related to food (in)security and agri-food enterprise in the Algoma District. The second component to this project are the food workshops that are listed below. And the third component is the feasibility of a food hub that teaches food skills development for the Algoma District community.

“From all the work we do in public health, we know that food security is crucial to overall health,” says Laurie Zeppa, Director of Community Services for Algoma Public Health. “When money is tight, families often cut back on food or go without in order to make ends meet. The CAFFE project is a first step in looking at improving food security in these communities.”

The next workshop will be on April 13, 2017. “Herbs and Their Uses” will be held at Laird Township Hall from 7 PM – 8:30 PM. Upcoming workshops include:

Plant & Flower Jellies on May 30
Embracing a Seasonal Diet & Food Budgeting on June 20
Canning Basics on July 12
Dehydration & Freezing on August 1
Pickling on August 30
Embracing the Harvest on September 12
Winter Prep & Budgeting on September 22

CAFFE is inviting members of the Algoma community to complete a brief survey about their role in Agri-Food Processing here: www.surveymonkey.com

Be sure to follow Central Algoma Food for Everyone (CAFFE) on Facebook for more details about upcoming workshops and for general information about the project. For more information about CAFFE, visit rainalgoma.ca

To learn about the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre and Rural Agri-Innovation Network’s CAFFE project, contact Jessica Laidley at (705) 942-7927 ext. 3034 or [email protected]

For more information about the Ontario Trillium Foundation, visit www.otf.ca. OTF is an agency of the Government of Ontario, and one of Canada’s largest granting foundations.

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