The Capital Region's
Community Food Hub
The Victoria Community Food Hub Society (VCFHS) was incorporated as a Charity in 2013. It works hand in hand with its key partners the Capital Region Food and Agriculture Initiatives Roundtable (CRFAIR) and the Foodshare Network to promote a healthy and sustainable food system in the Capital Region. The VCFHS efforts are focused on ensuring that this food system provides healthy food to the most vulnerable people in our community and works to increase their resources, food skills and social connections for a healthier future.
The purpose of the organization is to alleviate poverty and hunger by providing access to healthy food, while fostering a local food based economy. We believe that through providing access to healthy food, education and care we can support individuals, families, and communities to achieve greater health and well being. The way we work is to bring community resources together through food hubs, centres and networks to reach and engage people where they live, work and play in food access and literacy programs.
Our Core Values:
The right to food: The right to food is a value that all people deserve adequate access to food that is healthy, nourishing and culturally appropriate. Though the work of Food Hubs Centres or Networks they ensure that their community has this Right to Food.
Building community through food: Food can be used as community building tool; the simple act of bringing people together and break bread. Food strengthens community connection and helps reduce social isolation. The majority of people enjoy food and the act of eating, growing, cooking and preserving food has the ability to build connections amount community members
Strengthen the local food system within our work: Though not all food can be sourced locally at all times Food Hubs, Centres or Networks try to embed programs that promote the sourcing of local food. This can be done through several ways such as a gardens, farmer’s market coupons or bulk buying programs.
Core Projects and Partnerships of the Victoria Community Food Hub Society:
South Island Farmhub
Iye Creative Partnership
School Food Shift Initiative
The Vision: Good Food for All.
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries and our partnership with the City of Victoria.
The South Island Farm Hub operates under the Victoria Community Food Hub Society making good food- fresh from local farms and food processors -available to everyone in our community. It is an online platform, aggregator and distributor for local, seasonal produce and locally processed foods. The webshop acts as an online farmer’s market and they deliver fresh nutritious food to home customers, charity organizations, local restaurants, and school districts. The popular Farmbucks program subsidizes local food from the webshop to increase access for community organizations, charities, and schools. The FarmHub makes it possible for farmers and food processors to work together to meet the growing demand for local, sustainable food in the CRD.
Kitchen Connect is a food business incubator and processing facility, set to fully launch this fall. The space aims to enable farmers and food makers to create local value-added products to scale up into retail and wholesale markets. The facility also provides business development support and training opportunities for those wanting to enter the food service workforce, and is also available to use for community events as well.
Sharing space and facilities in the Food Security Distribution Center with the Mustard Seed’s Food Rescue Operations means that together we can offer the capacity of their existing commercial kitchen services and training kitchen, and continue the mission to serve good local food to our most vulnerable populations. The Victoria Community Food Hub Society is leading the development of the Food Hub in our region. The Mustard Seed is our partner in the integrated hub.
Imagine all the synergies and collaborations that can arise from being in the same space - a space that includes growers, processors and distribution capacity!
Iyé Creative is a food justice and grassroots collective nurturing reciprocal relations and mutual aid systems. Iyé created and also facilitates the Palenke Produce Box Initiative: a farm-fresh food box program sourced locally, offering free produce bi-weekly. 70% of Palenke produce box contents are provided through the South Island FarmHub’s Farmbucks program. This initiative is aimed at supporting community access to nutritious, fresh, and delicious food while also re-invigorating connection to the lands we live on, relationships to where our food is grown, resilience of our communities, and the vitality of our bodies. Check out their website and other initiatives HERE.
The School Food Shift coalition is a group of organizations supporting efforts at the community level in partnership with school, health and food production sectors to improve school food environments. Check out their latest report here.
In the media
In the media
New food hubs to strengthen food security on the Island | BC Government, Mar 2021
Food and beverage producers will soon have more opportunities to grow their businesses while increasing food security with the development of three new food hubs in Bowser, Cowichan Valley and Victoria.
"The Victoria Foodhub development makes it possible for small agricultural producers like myself to develop and grow viable food businesses in the Capital Region. In partnership with the South Island Farmhub, we are excited to expand the Eat Island Grown brand this year, bringing new locally-grown and processed products to retailers in our community. The Victoria Foodhub and the processing capacity it will offer brings an opportunity for new partnerships between farmers, processors and retailers to be established. These partnerships will support the expansion of local food production, and be a great step towards developing a more food secure South Vancouver Island."
Ty James, Farmer and Founder Eat Island Grown
"This is a tremendous investment that improves community access to healthy local food and
provides local economic opportunities. Were thankful to the Province for empowering businesses to maximize the potential of locally grown food and find new ways to improve food security, which has become all the more important during the pandemic."
Lisa Helps, Mayor, City of Victoria
“The development of a regional food hub is the culmination of years of work to identify the infrastructure needed in the region to support advancing the food and farm sector. This food hub is unique in that it is marrying economic development goals with social good, supporting
food services and distribution of good local food to people in our region. There is a lot of potential in this initiative and we are pleased with the support from the many partners
Linda Geggie, spokesperson, Victoria Community Food Hub Society
“This funding and the continued partnership with the Victoria Community Food Hub Society is just the next step around food security and strengthening our local food economy in Southern Vancouver Island.. We have seen incredible human and environmental impacts with our Food Recovery programs and know that this new development and strengthening of current key partnerships will continue to bring incredible outcomes to our local families, farmers and non-profit agencies. “
Janiene Boice, Senior Director Mustard Seed Street Church