New Approach Means More Ontario Food for Hospital Patients

-Greenbelt Fund Announces Third Round of Grants-

TORONTO, Jan. 18, 2012 /CNW/ - When you're recovering from illness, healthy, nourishing food is vital. That's why the Greenbelt Fund is providing a grant to Real Food for Real Kids to develop meals made with Ontario food for patients at Scarborough Hospital. With support from the Ontario government, more Ontario food will make its way into hospitals and long-term care facilities and onto the plates of patients and residents.

Thanks to the Greenbelt Fund more Ontario food is also being served at daycares, schools, universities and colleges. The grants announced today will support 11 innovative projects adding to the 27 projects already underway.

Real Food for Real Kids is expanding their offerings of pre-made food from their current customer base of daycare facilities. This partnership with Scarborough Hospital is a pilot to supply pre-made meals with Ontario food to patients. Through this grant and the results from the project, Real Food for Real Kids hopes to expand this service to other hospitals.

The Fund is assisting small to large farm operations and food distributors in working together to bring more Ontario food into the food value chain. Results to date include significant increases to Ontario food purchased at institutions across the province and new jobs within the sector. Projects within health care institutions, municipalities and food service are resulting in more Ontario food on menus, growing patient and resident satisfaction.

"This type of innovative funding helps to bridge the gap between farmers and institutional consumers. It takes Ontario agriculture from fresh in the field to fresh on the plate."

  • Ted McMeekin, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

"As a recent hospital patient I can relate to the importance of food to the rehabilitation process. Whether it is at the hospital or my child's school, there is no doubt that bringing more Ontario food into our institutions is good for farmers, families, the economy and environment."

  • Burkhard Mausberg, CEO, Greenbelt Fund

"We are excited for the opportunity to share our culinary expertise and passion for Ontario with the patients at Scarborough Hospital. We are committed to using Ontario Food where possible and providing nutritious and tasty meal options to patients."

  • David Farnell, Founder, Real Food for Real Kids

About the Greenbelt Fund:

The Greenbelt Fund is a sister organization of the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation.  With funding from the Ontario Government, the Fund is helping to increase the amount of Ontario food served in daycares, schools, universities and colleges, hospitals and long-term care facilities through its program, the Broader Public Sector Investment Fund: Promoting Ontario Food.

This program provides grants to local food industry leaders, producers, distributors, food service providers and public institutions working to serve more Ontario food. Helping to overcome challenges, support economic growth and the sustainability of agriculture in Ontario, the Fund's goal is to help create systemic change to permanently increase the amount of local food in the province's public institutions.  For more information about the program and grants, please visit www.bpsinvestmentfund.ca.

Image with caption: "Burkhard Mausberg, CEO, The Greenbelt Fund and David Farnell, Founder, Real Food for Real Kids sampling a local Ontario food meal to be served at public institutions, like Scarborough Hospital. (CNW Group/Greenbelt Fund)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120118_C4002_PHOTO_EN_9027.jpg

SOURCE Greenbelt Fund

For further information:

For more information or to book an interview, please contact:

Julienne Spence
Communications Manager, Greenbelt Fund
Office: 416-960-0001, ext. 311
Mobile: 416-795-8892 
jspence@greenbeltfund.ca

Mark Cripps
Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs
Office: 416-326-3069
mark.cripps@ontario.ca

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Greenbelt Fund

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