NO MEGA QUARRY + FOOD AND WATER FIRST
To save the land that feeds us and to amend policy to protect vital food and water resources from development.
Back in 2010 we offered our pro bono services to support the interests of a group of concerned citizens, residents and farmers opposed to a well-resourced proposal that planned to turn 2.5 thousand acres of prime agricultural land, in the heart of Ontario’s vital farming community, into the largest quarry in Canada. Our effort involved thousands of hours of effort and generated an unprecedented groundswell of public opposition, earning international media for what started out as an insignificant regional issue. With the help of our partners and allies, complete online, out of home, print and event campaigns were orchestrated with donated resources and time.
In both 2011 and 2012 we worked with the Canadian Chefs’ Congress, to help orchestrate the largest culinary events in the history of Canada (and possibly the world). Foodstock and Soupstock brought together Ontarians in day-long celebrations of local food in an effort to shift public perception and ‘Save the Land that Feeds Us’. The open-air cook outs featuring chefs from across the country, cooking with local produce attracted 28,000 people (Foodstock) and a whopping 40,000 (Soupstock). To us they were both days full of excellent food, happy crowds and amazing music–all in support of the movement to stop the mega quarry.
In November 16, 2012, 30 days after Soupstock, the proponents withdrew their application for the mega quarry citing “lack of community support for the project”. Shortly thereafter we morphed our campaign into the Food and Water First movement, a policy focused initiative pushing to close loop holes in Ontario’s land use planning policy to protect rare Class 1 and 2 farmland and headwater regions from development. The current Liberal government has taken a pledge to put Food and Water First, but we have yet to see changes to the policy. Our work continues until we do.