Online Public Engagement Conference



Building a Sustainable Food System in Newfoundland & Labrador

Conference Dates: MAY 5-6-7, 2022

In this time of climate crisis and food insecurity, we need to adapt and change our system of food production and food sharing in this province to restore ecological balance and health in our communities.

This online conference was organized by Food Producers Forum, with support from the Faculty of Medicine and the Office of Public Engagement, Memorial University and CBC Radio & Television, to focus on how we can do this.

THANK YOU to the Conference Organizing Team, CBC Radio & Television, our wonderful hosts and presenters, and everyone who attended the sessions.

Ten representatives of local organizations focused on food production, food security and food justice have formed the NL-Food Action Network to address conference recommendations.

Click on this LINK for conference presentation videos.



10 AM – OPENING PLENARY: Welcome by Dr. Atanu Sarkar; Territorial Welcome by Daphne March; Welcome by Honorary Chair, Mary Walsh; presentation on the history of agriculture in our province by Ross Traverse; overview of conference goals and sessions by Dan Rubin.

1 PM – SEMINAR ONE: Down to the Dirt (Living Soil) with Dr. Adrian Unc (Soil Scientist, Grenfell Campus, Memorial University); Jane White (Crop Specialist, NL Department of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture) and Jonas Roberts (Permaculture Food Producer, Foggy Food Forest) hosted by Dr. Ivan Emke.

3 PM – SEMINAR TWO: How Do We Grow? (Food Production Methods) with David Jason Goodyear (The Homestead at Flatrock); Nathan Gidge (Kingfisher Farm, Gambo) and Tom Angiers (Spruce Meadow Farms, Goose Bay, Labrador) hosted by Ramona Dearing.

FRIDAY, May 6th

9 AM – SEMINAR THREE: Food as Community Resource (Everyone Eats) with Sarah Crocker (Program Coordinator, Food First NL); Megan Samms (Codroy Valley Community Service Garden) and Crystal Anderson-Baggs (Marketing Development Officer, NL Department of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture) hosted by Samantha Young.

11 AM – SEMINAR FOUR: Food from the Wild (Foraging, Hunting and Fishing) with Shawn Dawson (Forager, Author); Roxanne Notley (Food Security Coordinator, NunatuKavut Community Council) and Kimberly Orren (Fishing for Success, Petty Harbour) hosted by Lori McCarthy.

1 PM – FORUM ONE: Grow More Local Food (Expanding Food Production) with Dr. Nicholas Fairbridge (Faculty of Medicine, Memorial University); Ada John (Conne River Health and Social Services) & Timothy Drew (Miawpukek Community Garden) and Laurie Haycock (Gros Morne Farm and Market) hosted by Ted Blades.

3 PM – FORUM TWO: Sharing the Harvest (Beyond Bandaid Solutions) with Josh Smee (Executive Director, Food First NL); Debbie Wiseman (Sharing the Harvest NL) and Crystal Anderson-Baggs (Marketing Development Officer, NL Department of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture) hosted by Dr. Nicholas Fairbridge.


9 AM – SEMINAR FIVE: Creating Food Justice (Food as a Human Right) with Jody Williams (Bridges to Hope); Rob McLennan and Dominique Jean (Stella’s Circle) and Dr. Atanu Sarkar (Memorial University Faculty of Medicine) hosted by Debbie Wiseman.

11 AM – FORUM THREE: Making Better Use of Available Resource (Closing the Circle) with Andrew Williams (Operations Program Coordinator, Second Harvest); Diane Hollett (NL Marine Organics) and Ben Wiper (3F Waste Recovery) hosted by Dan Rubin.

1 PM – FORUM FOUR: Learning for a Liveable Future (Food Education) with Kasey Budgell (King’s Point Community Garden); Chelsea Foley (NL Federation of Agriculture) and Dr. Gabriella Sabau (Professor of Economics, Grenfell Campus of Memorial University) hosted by Emily Doyle.

4 PM – CLOSING PLENARY: Turning Talk into Action (Recommendations and Resolutions) – Invocation by Sister Mary Tee (Sisters of Mercy) followed by a plenary session to identify major action items at the community level and specifics of policy change by governments facilitated by Ramona Dearing, Josh Smee and Dan Rubin.

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