Northern communities struggle to maintain ready access to safe, dependable, nutritious, affordable food. This problem is especially pronounced in remote Indigenous communities, where access to traditional country foods is increasingly threatened by a range of factors. This means a growing reliance on less nutritious and more expensive food supplied from Southern regions. Innovative practices and technologies are needed to reduce the barriers to sustainable, affordable, community-based food production systems. On-going access to traditional country foods must also be part of the solution.
Cool Ideas: Hyperlocal Food Systems to Address Northern Food Insecurity, part of The Conference Board of Canada’s Cool Ideas series, is designed to spark a nationwide conversation about the technological future of the Canadian North. Vertical food farm technologies—hydroponics, aquaponics, aeroponics, and fogponics—have been extensively tested and proven to be effective in a variety of contexts. However, their potential and applicability across Canada’s North remain uncertain.