When we filed our incorporation papers in March 2010, one of the major pieces was our formal Statement of Purpose, which reads as follows:
The purpose of the Association is to
1) help its members acquire and share the knowledge, skills, and resources they need in order to
a) grow, gather, raise, and catch healthful food as locally as possible;
b) preserve, store, prepare, and share the bounty;
2) build a strong community and a diverse local food economy based on mutual support, fair prices, living wages, and respect for the natural systems which sustain life.
This statement indicates our strong commitment to empowering our members to work better together in order to become more able to provide for themselves, their families, friends, neighbours, and community.
Part (a) sets out in very general terms the idea that we are concerned with increasing the amount of food available locally, regardless of how it comes to people:
- grown: any kind of produce, grains, beans, etc.
- gathered: wild foods, gleaned fruits nuts, etc.
- raised: animals other domesticated food sources;
- caught: wild animals, fish, etc.
Part (b) captures our commitment to preserving and distributing these foods as much as possible, so that we can increase the amount of local food available throughout the year.
Part (2) is all about our commitment to the three pillars of the ‘triple bottom line’:
- social: we intend to produce benefits for the social life of the community, through the strengthening of ties among people, by respecting and honouring the work that people do to feed themselves and others;
- economic: we intend to produce economic opportunities for people, embedded in a vision of a fair and just economy which pays fair prices and fair wages;
- environmental: we intend to minimize waste and destructive practices as we go about our work.
In January, 2011 we resolved to accept as our Mission Statement:
“Working together to build and maintain a healthy regional food system”