Prof to Address House of Commons on National Food Policy

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Prof. Evan Fraser

A University of Guelph professor has been invited to make recommendations about the development of a national food policy to a House of Commons committee.

Evan Fraser, director of the Arrell Food Institute and holder of the Canada Research Chair in Global Food Security, will address the standing committee on food and agriculture Sept. 28 at 3:30 p.m.

This past spring, the federal government announced plans to create A Food Policy for Canada. The first-of-its-kind initiative will set short- and long-term goals for Canada’s food system under four themes: increasing access to affordable food; improving health and food safety; conserving soil, water and  air; and growing high-quality food.

Earlier this month, U of G hosted an Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada regional consultation session on the new policy.

Fraser says the government needs to focus on a few specific initiatives under each theme, such as addressing chronic food insecurity and safety among Indigenous people and at-risk communities.

He will also recommend that the government align existing and new programs with the national food policy, and establish appropriate governance mechanisms.

Fraser joined U of G’s Department of Geography in 2010.

He studies the social and environmental consequences of food price volatility and ways to reduce waste in global food systems. He uses connections to Canadian businesses and organizations to inform public policy.

He started the “Feeding Nine Billion” project at U of G to spark discussion through social media and in high school classrooms about feeding a growing human population.

Co-author of the book Empires of Food: Feast, Famine and the Rise and Fall of Civilizations, Fraser was the first U of G professor to receive a prestigious Pierre Elliott Trudeau Fellowship.