Time to protect food sovereignty

Letter

Dear Editor

It’s been years since I’ve seen a jack rabbit in my area, and I’ve noticed a real reduction in the number of hummingbirds, blue birds, swallows, gold finches and other birds in my yard. It’s time for strong action to protect species at risk in Canada. I believe the next federal government needs to implement recovery strategies to preserve biodiversity for generations to come, including a strategy to monitor and protect pollinators like bees.

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The way we grow crops, raise livestock, and use food has an impact on the climate – and health of all Canadians. Why does most of our fresh food come from California, China and other parts of the world when much of it can be grown here? We must protect our Food Sovereignty. As a lifelong food producer, healthy food and food waste have been causes close to my heart.

In 2003, I saw a Toronto grocery flyer advertising “organically grown potatoes from pristine northern Saskatchewan.” But in small print, the ad said Product of USA. This raised a lot of questions for me. We need a government that works together with farmers and food producers to develop a National Food Policy, making our food systems stronger all across the country - including food labelling and traceability, so that Canadians can be confident in what is grown in Canada. We also need a food waste strategy to reduce the huge amounts of food that currently go to waste in Canada.

Federal and provincial governments need to partner with Indigenous communities and work towards a national school nutrition program that will give every child in Canada access to healthy food and food literacy skills to make healthy choices for life.

I have spent decades fighting for food sovereignty, where farmers and consumers decide what we will eat and grow, not corporations telling us what we will eat and grow.  

Marcella Pedersen

Cut Knife

 

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