What is food security?
Oxford County is one of the richest areas in Ontario for prime agricultural land. Yet, more than half of us don't eat the recommended daily intake of fruits and vegetables, and 1 in 10 of us felt food insecure last year. Ensuring everyone has access to good food is part of living in a healthy community.
Food security looks at all the factors that ensure a safe, reliable and nutritious food supply for all members of a community:
Affordability. Can you afford to eat? Can you afford to eat healthy food?
Accessibility. Not everyone has access to a vehicle or public transit to get to a grocery store. Some people may need to rely on nearby convenience stores or “fast food” restaurants.
Availability. Due to our Canadian climate, fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables are not as readily available year round.
Emergencies. If there was a major power outage or snowstorm, do you have – or does your community have-- a food supply that could last 72 hours?
Did you know:
- 60% of Oxford County residents don't eat the recommended daily intake of fruits and vegetables
- $208.55 is the average cost of healthy food per week in Oxford County for a family of four (2015)
- About 10% of Oxford County residents feel food insecure
Read the 2015 Nutritious Food Basket bulletin for more details.
Past Nutritious Food Basket bulletins
2014 Nutritious Food Basket
2013 Nutritious Food Basket
Developing food security policy
The issue of improving food security is a growing priority in Ontario. In 2011, Oxford County Public Health received provincial funding to help establish Food Secure Oxford, a network of community organizations and individuals concerned about the local food system led by the Woodstock and Area Community Health Centre.
In 2013, Public Health received a provincial grant to support the development of food security policy in Oxford County. This funding was intended to support Oxford's eight area municipalities in identifying issues in their communities and kick-start working groups or food policy councils to respond to those issues.
Read the report: Oxford County Food Security Policy Development