This summer, Land to Table (L2T) and Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Institute for Sustainable Food Systems (ISFS) started a Rural Food Banks Procurement Study in collaboration with Community Connections (Revelstoke) Society to help understand and problem solve the unique challenge of feeding people in rural communities in British Columbia.
We are working with Community Connections (Revelstoke) Society, Eagle Valley Resource Centre in Sicamous, the Golden Food Bank, and the Columbia Valley Food Bank in Invermere to explore how small populations, large geographic distances from city centers, difficult (and often dangerous winter) transportation barriers, and limited infrastructure restrict how these organizations can source and supply food to people in need.
As the demand for food increases in all of the rural food banks and public and private monetary and food donations are at an all time low, these organizations decided that working together could provide possible solutions for their systems already at capacity.
Funded by a generous, anonymous donor, the Rural Food Banks Food Procurement Study is an 8-month long project. Our team will deep dive into the four food banks’ finances, connections, networks, and operations. Through in-depth interviews, economic and statistical analysis, and collaborative evaluation, the research team is developing individual profiles and collective pilot opportunities to connect the food banks– capitalizing on their strengths and supporting each other’s weaknesses.
Through bulk purchasing, cost-sharing, networking, communications, and advocacy opportunities, the four food banks are working together to define their own model of food banking unique to their remote geographic locations and shared challenges of sourcing affordable food. L2T is excited to share more updates from the study as it develops.
If you are:
- A farmer interested in donating or selling bulk food to a collective of food agencies at wholesale prices
- A transportation company with space in your vehicle traveling through the aforementioned towns
- Or if you have an abundance of cold or dry storage to share
Please contact Sammy at email@example.com to discuss opportunities.