The Parry Sound & Area Food Charter reads as follows:
The Parry Sound & Area Food Charter represents our communities’ voices, values, and priorities for a healthy and sustainable food system. This charter will guide the development of food-related initiatives and policies within communities and organizations, and at the local government level.
We envision communities where residents, businesses, and governments collaborate to foster a localized and sustainable food system with equal access to nutritious, safe food. To achieve our vision we will:
1) CREATE ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES
- Support regional food production to enhance food security.
- Enhance community market opportunities for local food products through farmers’ markets, direct farm sales, and local food outlets.
- Supplement regional promotion with a food and culinary destination brand.
- Adopt food-purchasing practices that foster social and environmental responsibility, as well as good health.
2) PROMOTE EDUCATION AND SKILL-BUILDING
- Encourage initiatives which develop agricultural and nutritional skills.
- Use existing educational and branding options to increase local food-production knowledge.
- Cultivate food literacy and skills for all residents with a focus on growing food and healthy cooking.
3) MAINTAIN A HEALTHY ECOSYSTEM
- Advocate for food and packaging waste reduction and management.
- Promote agricultural choices which sustain our unique local ecology and protect water sources.
- Reduce our community’s carbon footprint by prioritizing local food sources.
4) FOSTER RESIDENTS’ HEALTH AND WELL-BEING
- Recognize food as an essential component of people’s mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being.
- Adopt a rural and urban food-security system, and incorporate it into local planning.
- Increase the number of healthy food choices in schools, workplaces, and public spaces.
5) SUPPORT EQUAL ACCESS OPPORTUNITIES
- Recognize access to safe and healthy food as a social right – regardless of income.
- Advocate for income, education, employment, environmental, housing, and transportation policies that support opportunities to grow and access food.
- Campaign for neighborhoods to have walk-able and bike-able access to healthy food sources.
- Encourage the sustainable harvesting of wild foods and access to a diversity of foods.
6) CELEBRATE CULTURE AND COLLABORATION
- Promote community gatherings to appreciate and celebrate regional food, culture, and diversity.
- Increase rural-to-urban dialogue to inform people about strategies which support local food production.
- Engage people in the development of food policies and related programs.