Community food security (CFS) is widely defined as "a situation in which all community residents obtain a safe, culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate diet through a sustainable food system that maximizes community self-reliance and social justice" (Hamm and Bellows 2003, 37). The CFS concept has also been widely adopted in Canada by community-based organizations, including public health units across Ontario, in their efforts to tackle household-level food insecurity while also supporting local efforts to (re)build sustainable agriculture. This chapter explores this conundrum at the heart of CFS: Can community-based initiatives help address household food insecurity and support fair livelihoods for local smallholder farmers? Our research shows that responding to both sets of needs through community-based initiatives is possible, and could be seen as an important step towards broader food system transformation based on a more cooperative approach to economic relations. However, the evidence also shows that these initiatives can prove challenging to organize and administer, and should not be seen as a substitute for income support provided by the state to the food insecure.

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Keywords Community food security, Eastern Ontario, Farmer livelihoods, Household food access
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57000-6_5
Citation
Andrée, P, Ballamingie, P, Piazza, S. (Stephen), & Jarosiewicz, S. (Scott). (2017). Can community-based initiatives address the conundrum of improving household food access while supporting local smallholder farmer livelihoods?. In Nourishing Communities: From Fractured Food Systems to Transformative Pathways (pp. 77–94). doi:10.1007/978-3-319-57000-6_5