A community enjoys food security when all people, at all times, have access to nutritious, safe, personally acceptable and culturally appropriate foods, produced in ways that are environmentally sound and socially just.
We define food security as a situation in which
- everyone has assured access to adequate, appropriate and personally acceptable food in a way that does not damage self respect;
- people are able to earn a living wage by growing, producing, processing, handling, retailing and serving food;
- the quality of land, air and water are maintained and enhanced for future generations; and
- food is celebrated as central to community and cultural integrity.
Good food is the basis of health. This means also that people in need of healing, whether in hospitals, care facilities, or remand centres, require healthy food, not the cheapest available. By the same token, children (our future) require the best possible food, starting with breast milk if that is what the mother can support.
The principles of democracy and equity require that good food is available to everyone, not just those who can afford to pay for it. Nor is it acceptable that BC’s food policy is based on the exploitation of people or the environment in other countries.
Without food production, there is no economy. Full cost-accounting reveals the costs as well as the risks of a food system which is dependent on outside sources, long-distance movement of food, high-input agriculture, and poor population health. Food dependency holds political as well as economic dangers: any jurisdiction which cannot feed its people is at the mercy of whoever does.