In 2015, the Peterborough Public Health Board of Health reviewed a local food charter from the Grey-Bruce region and expressed interest in the development of a food charter for Peterborough. A Food Charter is a value, vision, or principle statement and/or a series of goals developed by a city, town or region that has abroad base of support and describes what a community wants their food system to look like (Source: Sustain Ontario)
There are many reasons for developing and supporting a food charter. The process of developing food charters allows diverse groups of stakeholders and community members to come together. Food charters communicate a common vision for strengthening food systems. They can be used to shape food policies and initiatives as communities work together towards food security for all.
Food charters are typically aspirational in wording and often include:
⦁ advocating for nutritious and affordable food for all community members,
⦁ recognizing the fundamental need for food security,
⦁ highlighting the importance of environmental sustainability as part of food systems,
⦁ acknowledging that food and food production is a vital component of a community’s economic development framework, and,
⦁ symbolizes a unified and cohesive celebration of food, cultures and community. (Source: Jaquith)
Community members have come together to develop their vision for a Peterborough Food Charter. It also includes a vision for a Local Food System that will provide healthy, sustainable and just food for all.