Q: What is Food Security?
A: Food Security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy lifestyle. (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations FAO, 1996).
Q: What is Community Food Security?
A: Community Food Security takes a food system approach and looks at food security in a broader context. It considers whether at the regional or municipal level, we are able to produce, distribute, and process food for local consumption. This means securing family farms and agricultural land, creating and expanding marketing opportunities for local food products, or providing community gardens and building food skills through educational opportunities It also considers the needs of lower income individuals and families in accessing fresh and local foods.
Q: What is a Local Food System?
A: A local or regional food system describes the proximal area where food is produced, distributed, consumed and where food waste is disposed. There is an emphasis on strengthening the existing (or developing new) relationships between all components of the food system in an effort to keep the local food system viable. This approach holds the hope of building sustainability – economic, environmental, and social. A healthy, sustainable food system and community food security is achieved when policies, programs, and services are integrated, partnerships are strong, and it is recognized that the responsibility for food security resides with individuals, communities, and all levels of government.