Community Food Assessments (CFAs) are collaborative, participatory processes that bring people together from all sectors of the local food system to analyze the local context; identify the assets, gaps, and priorities of the community; and develop an action plan to improve community food security.
Community food security exists when all community residents obtain a safe, culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate diet through a sustainable food system that maximizes community self-reliance and social justice. A sustainable food system refers to a collaborative network that integrates sustainable food production, processing, distribution, access, consumption and waste management in a way that enhances the environmental, economic and social health of a particular place.
CFAs have been undertaken by many communities across Canada and internationally for the purposes of analyzing existing community assets, identifying gaps, and developing strategic action plans to improve community food security across all sectors of the food system. CFAs are proven to be effective processes for building community capacity, developing strategic partnerships, and improving the health of the population—particularly those most vulnerable among us.