Definition of Local Food
What is ‘Local Food’?
Our definition of ‘local’ for the purposes of the Savour Ottawa Buy Local Region includes the Cities of Ottawa / Gatineau and neighbouring counties. This includes the Counties of Prescott-Russell, Stormont, Dundas & Glengarry, Leeds & Grenville, Lanark, Renfrew and Frontenac in Eastern Ontario; and the Outaouais, Pontiac, Papineau, and Gatineau Valley in Western Quebec.
Savour Ottawa uses the widely-accepted definition of ‘local food’ as coming from within the same jurisdiction where the food is being sold, or from the surrounding jurisdictions. This was the definition that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency used when the Savour Ottawa program was established.*
In a region where the urban centre (Ottawa / Gatineau) spans a provincial border, and farmers have historically freely marketed to eaters across this border, from a systems perspective it makes no sense to allow the provincial border to shape your definition of the Buy Local Region.
*In 2013, as a temporary decision without consultation, the CFIA expanded their definition of ‘local food’ to: “food produced in the province or territory in which it is sold, or food sold across provincial borders within 50 km of the originating province or territory”. This shift has since become permanent. Savour Ottawa did not support this change, as it was established without consultation, ran counter to many eaters’ understanding, and therefore could promote consumer skepticism.