We, The Open Food Network, are a global network of people and not for profit organizations (and charities) working together to build a fair food system. Together, we develop open and shared resources, knowledge and software to support a better food system.
We believe a sustainable and resilient food system needs to reconnect producers and consumers. We aim to empower people and communities and give them the tools and knowledge to develop the food systems they need for their community.
Our flagship project is an open source software platform that makes it easy to create innovative, independent, community food enterprises. The software can be used by producers setting up their own standalone online stores, but it’s designed for more than that. Our product aggregation tools were developed to help producers collaborate and sell together, allowing for the creation of thriving multivendor enterprises. People have used the power of these inventory management tools to create food collectives and coops, manage food hubs, to take their farmers’ market online, and to create solidarity 'buying clubs' that provide food insecure communities with access to affordable food.
We are currently working on community development projects to connect at-risk communities across Canada with affordable, nutritious and culturally appropriate local food. Your donations will provide the technology and infrastructure funding needed to further develop connected food systems in food deserts across Canada or the development of buying clubs in low income and rural neighbourhoods. We will provide updates as more projects are defined and implemented.
Our Work So Far:
With the support of our project partners, we have completed several foundational projects to integrate our open source codebase in Canada and helped 200+ local farmers and producers sell online. The communities we have been able to help include underserved remote communities of Huron County, Kenora and urban & urban-rural regions (e.g., Toronto and Waterloo).
This work has meant fair incomes and better livelihoods for small scale producers, harvesters and fishers by helping them maintain and reach new markets, and making it possible for them to 'pool' harvests to meet larger wholesale orders. For consumers, we improve food access and food security by making it easy for community organizations to source and distribute food in 'everyday' locations (schools, community centres, churches), eliminating the cost of the 'middleman', helping consumers form buying clubs to access bulk/wholesale pricing, and linking farmers with community food distribution enterprises (food banks).
Past Projects & Partners:
Our project partners have included: Huron County Food Bank, Local Food and Farming Cooperative, National Farmers Union, Ecological Farmers Association of O
ntario, Sustain Ontario, Food Secure Canada and Farmers Markets Ontario.
Read about our past work with the Huron County Community Network
and the CULTIVATE virtual farmers market
Thank you for your contribution. Stay tuned for more updates and as we launch our full program.
*Please note as we are a non-profit organization (and not a charity), we will not be able to issue tax receipts for your donation.*