World Food Day, Saskatoon - Stories from the field
On Sunday, October 16th World Food Day, community members gathered at the Saskatoon Farmers market to hear stories from small-scale farmers as well as to discuss challenges and successes of the local and global food system.
After a rousing introduction by Nettie Wiebe, founding member of Via Campesina - the International Peasants Movement - and former President of the National Farmers Union, the audience members were able to choose stories they were interested in hearing. The six participating farmers all had an array of different experiences – from farming in Iran, Burma and South Africa to Muskoday First Nation and rural Saskatchewan.
Following the story-telling sessions, people rejoined as a larger group to discuss how to improve our food system, what we need to ask of our government representatives and how we can make a difference. Some of the main issues raised included: better marketing opportunities for small-scale farmers, more collaborative opportunities and more policies to encourage organic farming as well as educate children to eat more organic, healthy food.
So what happens after such a great learning experience? People want to TAKE ACTION!
Following the event, people were encouraged to:
- Take Oxfam Canada’s World Food Challenge
- Support the GROW campaign
- Write a letter to the Prime Minister regarding what Canadian’s want to see happen at the G20 meetings
- Check out what is happening at a local level by speaking with the Saskatoon Food Coalition and CHEP Good Food Inc.
- Support Canadian farmers by supporting the Canadian Wheat Board
All in all, the event was a great success and informative, as people gained more knowledge about global and local food systems, and discussed different solutions to improve it.