We are committed to creating a healthy, equitable, and sustainable food system that contributes to the economic, ecological, and social well-being and health of the city of Thunder Bay and Area.

Community Emergency Food Response Plan

A project to design a Community Emergency Food Security Plan (CEFSP) to address the emergency food security needs of vulnerable populations in Thunder Bay.

#tbayInSeason

Thunder Bay’s Guide to Local Food features a directory of local food businesses, seasonality information, cooking shows and more!

Northwest Nosh 2022

Northwest Nosh 2022

The 2022 issue of Northwest Nosh is out!  This year's Nosh is a feature section within the May issue of The Walleye.  Get your copies at participating local businesses and from foodie friends like the Thunder Bay Country Market, or read it online right now at...

Coming This Fall – Report Card 2022!

Coming This Fall – Report Card 2022!

We are currently working on a comprehensive 2021/2022 update to the Community Food System Report Card. We look forward to sharing the updates, trends, analyses, and highlights from our research updates. Stay tuned for more details coming in Fall 2022! Download the...

Background Report for the Community Emergency Food Response Plan

Background Report for the Community Emergency Food Response Plan

During the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, the increased need to access barrier-free food for vulnerable people was made clear. While the response by service-providing organizations was both impactful and effective, it became clear that better community-level...

We wish to acknowledge the original custodians of this land and pay respect to the Elders — past, present, and future — for they hold the memories, the traditions, the culture, and the hopes of Indigenous peoples. We recognize that the Thunder Bay and Area Food Strategy operates on the traditional land of the Fort William First Nation — signatory to the Robinson Superior Treaty of 1850. We acknowledge the political representatives of Indigenous Nations in northern Ontario: the Anishinabek Nation, Grand Council Treaty #3, Nishnawbe Aski Nation, and independent First Nations and the many Metis historic settlements in the region.

We had our first experience with hakurei turnips last night. Also known as salad turnip or Tokyo turnip, this variety comes from Japan and will forevermore be known in our household as "gateway turnip."

The sweetest and most tender of turnips, this one is often eaten sliced raw ...with a sprinkling of salt, or julienned in a salad. To introduce them to our slightly picky eaters, we cut their green tops down to 2" and grilled them whole on the BBQ, then served them with bacon-wrapped steaks and grilled baby bok choi. They became very tender and sweet with a subtle horseradish flavour - perfect in combination with bites of juicy steak, much the way horseradish goes with roast beef. They looked spectacular on the plate!

Turnips have historically been a "no thank you" in our family, but this experience has made our tasters much more willing to give other varieties a try!

Hakurei turnips and baby bok choi - @pitchcreekfarm

Beef tenderloin and smoked bacon - @sandyacresfarm

You can find it all today at @tbaymarket and introduce your family to "gateway turnips" at dinner tonight!

Mike Gratz planted his haskaps at Superior Honeyberries - many, many 800ft rows of them - 3 years ago. This year he and his summer students have begun their first real harvest. They're expecting to collect about 800lbs of the tasty little berries this year, and three times as many in ...2023.

Haskaps, also known as Honeyberries, are members of the honeysuckle family. There are many different varieties of them, which is important because they pollinate between cultivars, so you have to plant at least two compatible kinds of the pretty little shrubs in order to get fruit. Mike has 15 varieties in his orchard, with the earlier-bearing types now fruiting. But you're probably more interested in the flavour than the science, so let's talk about that.

Haskaps look a lot like blueberries - they've got that same dark skin and light powdery coating that makes them look sky-blue - but their shape ranges from grape-like to tubular. Some have flat ends, some have pointy ones. They're about the size of the last joint of a woman's pinkie finger, and they pick about the same as highbush blueberries, with ripe ones pattering to the ground as you tickle them off their stems.

Despite the sweet Honeyberry name, (we suspect it's so named because the bees go nuts for the flowers in the springtime) haskap has a tart and complex flavour that varies from one cultivar to another, as does the shape. Some are sweeter than others, some taste more like saskatoons, some more like blueberries, others like rhubarb. Even the most tart ones are nice to eat by the handful, as the tartness expires quickly on your tongue, leaving behind a hard-to-define berry flavour that leads you to just as quickly put more in your mouth as you try to identify the familiar taste.

Haskap is higher in Vitamin C than oranges, and higher in anti-oxidants than blueberries. It's very hardy for our climate - indeed, it produces fruit earlier than any of the other domestic berries we've found in our market - and grows really well in the clay soil of the Slate River Valley where Mike keeps his orchard.

Learn more about Superior Honeyberries and buying their haskaps in our farm directory. Link in bio!

Hot dogs are favourites with kids of all ages, and with BBQ season officially underway we wanted to get you the scoop on two fantastic local options for your grill (or fresh-cut roasting stick.) Both dogs are made for the farmers with their own pure pork by local processors, and both are available ...tomorrow at the @tbaymarket, but the similarities end there.

@haywirefarm07 works with Bogdala's Smoked Meats to produce a sausage that's more like a slender smokie than a traditional store-bought wiener, with a coarser texture than you're used to, delicious spicing you can see right through the skin, and a nice smoke flavour.

A lot of Haywire's hot dogs are sold directly to @beefcakeburgerstbay. They're a staple item on the menu, and that's where we went to test them out. Beefcake's serves them two ways, the Cheddar Cheese Chipotle Dog and the Classic, which is how we had ours - with ketchup, mustard, onions and pickles. The acids in the toppings bring out the smokiness really well, while letting the spicing shine. Order your own ready-to-eat dog at Beefcake's, or visit Haywire Farm's booth Saturdays at the @tbaymarket for a whole pack to take home.

@sandyacresfarm's dogs are made by European Meats & Deli using a full emulsification process. The result is a lot like the traditional wieners you're used to, with a smooth texture and snappy skins that sometimes split while you cook them so you know they're done. The flavour is a lot like traditional hot dogs, with just the right amount of salt and smokiness. We cooked ours on a hot bbq (grill marks, bud!) and served them in buns with leftover homemade chili (local ground beef!) yellow mustard and grated cheddar cheese.

Get your Sandy Acres dogs from their booth at the Thunder Bay Country Market - they're there Wednesdays and Saturdays.

7 pillars of a healthy and sustainable food system

Strategic Pillar: Food Access
Strategic Pillar: Forest & Freshwater Foods
Strategic Pillar: Infrastructure
Strategic Pillar: Food Procurement
Strategic Pillar: Food Production
Strategic Pillar: School Food Environments
Strategic Pillar: Urban Agriculture