- Expert says Canada’s surcharge system works to deter Canadians from farming food at home.
- Nicola Moore, who cultivates food in her community funding in Hamilton, Ontario, as well as in her backyard, says there is no carbon footprint when she farms vegetables in her garden to feed her household.
Nicola Moore says the outbreak began her interest in farming food.
“My parents have always had a garden my entire life,” she stated. “I never set two and two together till I had a family. And then, when we went through the outbreak, I think it was 2020, I got nervous, and I wasn’t sure how I would feed my family breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day.
“And, you know, the grocery shops had long queues, and I was not sure about that. So I thought, how can I support my family? And that was knowing how to grow my food.”
Moore farms beets, beans, carrots, cucumbers, peas, radishes, lettuce, onions, peppers, and tomatoes, both at home in Hamilton, Ont., and in a nearby neighborhood allotment. “It’s been two years of constant learning, gardening, researching, and now my following level is canning and preserving for winter.”
Moore says the savings are notable. But they are also less than they could be because the seeds and the seedlings she purchases to grow her garden are subject to regional and federal sales surcharges. In contrast, foods grown from the same sources may be imported to Canada or trucked into cities over great spaces are not.
“When you look at our recent stats, it appears as though the gardening rate in Canada is at an all-time high,” stated Sylvain Charlebois, scientific director of the Agri-Food Analytics Lab at Dalhousie University.