Just Food’s Powering for Prosperity Awards Nomination

We are so thankful to be nominated for the 2018 Powering for Prosperity Awards. Just Food was nominated for the completion of a 10kW solar panel shed that you can find on our property! See below for information and videos on the project here!

Powering for Prosperity Award

Staying true to the ambition for vibrant, just and sustainable food systems, Just Food, Bullfrog and Beau’s Brewing Co. with other funders teamed up to build a 10kW Solar panel system and shed at the Just Food Farm. This is an extension of a commitment to normalize and spread sustainable food and farming practices all over the Ottawa region. However, this project goes beyond a solar shed and renewable energy demonstration; it will help influence the sustainable food movement. Showing solar energy as an ingredient in sustainable and organic farming will create a new standard by which we judge agricultural production.

We are thrilled to announce Just Foods Nomination for Powering for Prosperity 2018: Ontario Sustainable Energy Awards. Just Food installed a 10kw solar PV system to lower operating costs and their carbon footprint while demonstrating the application of renewable energy as part of a sustainable farming hub.

Check out our two videos demonstrating the project and the impact local partnerships can have on creating spaces for education, green energy and community building. You can find our videos from Beau’s Brewing Co. and Just Food’s Associate Director, Phil Mount here!


Although we did not win the award, we are grateful for the opportunity to be recognized for green energy initiatives and their importance. Congratulations to all nominees, but especially organizations in Ottawa such as Alfred Solar Energy Project by Ottawa Renewable Energy Co-Op, and the victors Karen’s Place Renewable Energy – Ottawa Salus on their deserved win. We all benefit when cities come together to support renewable energy! Go Ottawa!

Bring Food Home 2017 – October 26 – 29!

Bring Food Home Upstream Collaboration

Bring Food Home 2017: Upstream Collaboration will be held at the University of Ottawa on October 26th to October 29th, 2017.

Visit bringfoodhome.com for all the juicy details on this awesome four-day event!









The conference will  include inspiring speakers, local tours, engaging panels, hands-on workshops, and action-planning sessions in addition to networking opportunities and a Feast of Local Flavours. Bring Food Home offers a forum to share experience and expertise, build the capacity and cohesiveness of Ontario’s local food network, and plan and coordinate actions that will direct us in building a better food system in Ontario and beyond.

Upstream Collaboration, the 2017 conference theme will acknowledge the work and innovation being done in local food systems in Ontario.  This theme recognizes our collective need to bring together diverse sectors to generate action on food and farm issues, as well as the need to ask and answer tough questions about these issues. We will collaborate as an Ontario community to work on issues and grow stronger together. From food policy and food access to business support and the environment, the 2017 program will cover a diverse range of topics and make space for new and ongoing conversations. Over the three days, we will break down barriers, forge new alliances and support each other in working together for a better future.

Sept 14: Urban Agriculture Bike Tour

Discover excellent sites of downtown agriculture on an urban bike tour exploring Ottawa’s community gardens.
6.3 kilometres of laid-back, family friendly biking, to get to know how great our urban garden spaces are!

  • The event will take place September 14th6:00-8:00 PM. Starting point is at Escape Bicycle Tours and Rentals, 65 Sparks Street.
  • Light snacks will be provided. $5 or pay as you can donation.

Sept 12: Start-up Farm Info Session


Are you interested in being a farmer? Intrigued by the diverse possibilities of agriculture in the Ottawa region?

Learn more about Just Food and its 2018 Start-Up Farm Program at our next Information Session, September 12, 6:00 – 8:30 p.m. Please contact phil@justfood.ca for location.

Just Food launched its Start-Up Farm Program in 2013 to promote farming and careers in agriculture as viable options. The Start-Up Farm program offers workshops and meetings on organic certification, crop planting, marketing and sales, irrigation, farm safety and equipment use, and business planning—and many more—over the course of the year. The program also offers participants an option to access land, shared equipment, and training to help support new farmers and to lower the risk as they enter the industry. You can also book an appointment with Just Food to discuss a partner project at the farm.

There are a limited number of bursaries and loans for select participants. Applicants must have some agricultural experience and are encouraged to have a specific direction to pursue for their farm. If you are ready to get started farming, attend the information session September 12 to see how you can benefit from Just Food’s Start Up Farm Program.

Register today

For the application and more information, contact phil@justfood.ca



August 3 Workshop: How to Start a Community Garden


At the free, “How to Start a Community Garden” workshop you will learn about the steps involved in starting a community garden. How to search for land, what is essential when starting a community garden, the supports that are available, tips for organizing the garden, and much more!

This workshop will be facilitated by Jordan Bouchard of the Community Garden Network.

Registration is required for this workshop as space is limited.
To register, click here.

Thursday August 3  6:30 -8:30
Albion-Heatherington Community Centre, 1560 Heatherington Road.


A Message from the Board Chair: Our New Community Space

Brief Comments by Patricia Ballamingie, Just Food Board Chair, following Marie-France Lalonde, MPP, Ottawa-Orleans at the announcement on February 17th, 2017, regarding the funding for a new community space at the Just Food Farm.

Thank you kindly, Marie-France, for making this exciting announcement, and sharing in our celebration. And I am so pleased to have Brewster Kneen here with us today, representing our dear former Chair, Cathleen Kneen, who was instrumental in negotiating our lease and advancing our organization. My name is Trish Ballamingie, and I serve as Chair of the Board of Just Food.

We are tremendously grateful to the Ontario150 Community Capital Program, and to the Trillium Foundation, for this critical funding, and to our partner, the National Capital Commission (and we are pleased to have NNC representative, Bill Leonard, Geoffrey Frigon, and Cedric Pelletier with us here today).

The Just Food Farm boasts this large, two-story hayloft barn – one of the remaining gems in Ottawa’s Greenbelt – in dire need of repair and renovation to realize its potential to connect and enrich the community for decades to come – a joint goal of both Just Food and the National Capital Commission!

The barn itself is currently in active use, but under less-than-ideal conditions; it must be renovated to bring in electricity, water and heat, to ensure accessibility, and to highlight environmental design; and retrofitted to significantly extend and expand its community

A renewed facility would benefit the adjacent neighborhood of Blackburn Hamlet as well as other community-based organizations across Ottawa with whom we regularly collaborate; and the general population, as well as the Just Food Farm community—including an annual intake of start-up farmer trainees, plus long-term partners such as the Karen Learning and Education Opportunities (refugees from the Thai/Burma border); Operation Come Home (who work with street youth); Radical Homestead (beekeepers); The Wild Garden (Amber, our resident herbalist and children’s programmer); Nanabush Food Forests (forest gardeners + off-grid mushroom cultivators), and Earth Path (children’s programmers).

The site attracts thousands of people from across the city (to participate in programs and educational workshops, attend our Sunday farm gate stand, walk the property, or drop their kids off at summer nature camp…).

Renovations would provide much-needed three-season COMMUNITY EVENT space for: educational food literacy workshops; community gatherings, local food celebrations and public events; and rodent-proof seed library storage; indoor farm equipment storage; and on-site, four-season offices for Just Food staff, volunteers, partners and interns. [We finally have an organizational home!]

This funding will help the Just Food Farm truly become a Community Food and Sustainable Agriculture Hub (and the barn will showcase sustainable building practices such as adaptive reuse of dismantled materials, composting toilets, green energy, and more!).

This legacy project will not only stimulate economic opportunity, but also bolster community connections – augmenting social capital and enriching Ottawa Valley food cultures. Canada’s 150th anniversary represents an ideal opportunity to revive a piece of its heritage to CONNECT COMMUNITY around food and sustainable agriculture in Canada’s capital!

If you have time for an informal tour, I would invite you to join myself and Just Food’s Associate Director, Phil Mount, for a walk through the barn, so that you can see the BEFORE, and envision what we have planned for the near future!

Thank you so much!

NEW Community Space at the Just Food Farm!

Celebrating Ontario’s 150th Anniversary with Better Community Spaces in Ottawa-Orléans

Announcing new funds to create community space at Just Food Farm

MPP Marie-France Lalonde announced today that Just Food is receiving $246,800 of support through the Ontario150 Community Capital Program for their Barn-Raising Renovation to create a city-wide community asset at the Just Food Farm on the NCC Greenbelt. The Ontario150 Community Capital Program will help not-for-profit organizations, like Just Food, renovate, repair and retrofit existing community and cultural infrastructure. This support will be used to increase accessibility and maximize community use of public spaces, delivering better facilities for families in the community.

“Infrastructure is the backbone that supports community life. It gives us spaces to come
together, to be active or to honour our heritage, in this case, honouring our agricultural heritage. Our government is helping Ottawa-Orléans strengthen community infrastructure that makes a difference in our everyday lives.”
— Marie-France Lalonde, MPP for Ottawa-Orléans

“We are grateful to Ontario 150 and Trillium for granting us funds to create a community space by renovating the barn at the Just Food Farm in the NCC Greenbelt to connect community around food and sustainable agriculture in Canada’s capital for decades to come.”
—Patricia Ballamingie, Just Food Board Chair, local grant recipient

“The Ontario150 Community Capital Program will positively impact people right across the province by improving public spaces like parks and youth centres. Our investments in these important projects will build a strong social, cultural and economic legacy for our communities for years to come.”
—Eleanor McMahon, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport

“I thank the Province of Ontario for its important contribution that will allow Just Food to restore and modernize their farm’s barn. This contribution will also assist the National Capital Commission with its efforts to preserve the Greenbelt’s rich rural landscape.”
—Dr. Mark Kristmanson, Chief Executive Officer, National Capital Commission

Ontario is investing $25 million in the Ontario150 Community Capital Program to support 203 capital projects. In total, these investments are expected to result in almost 1.4 million square feet of renovated community space and more than 36,000 hours of additional availability for physical activity and arts programming.

Ontario is recognizing the historical significance of 2017 with Ontario150, a year-long
commemoration that will honour Ontario’s past, showcase the present and inspire future

The Ontario150 Community Capital Program is one of three Ontario150 grant programs that will promote community engagement, empower young people and contribute to economic growth.

The Ontario150 Community Capital Program is administered by the Ontario Trillium
Foundation, an agency of the Government of Ontario and one of Canada’s largest granting

The Ontario Trillium Foundation uses research to guide decision-making and relies on
community-based volunteers across Ontario to review applications and guide granting

In celebration of Ontario’s 150th anniversary, the province has also released a new
recording of A Place to Stand (Ontario Song), the province’s unofficial anthem. The 50-year old song has been refreshed to instil a sense of pride and belonging for all.

Investing in local communities for Ontario’s 150th anniversary is part of Ontario’s plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.


Workshop this Tuesday: Organic Certification and Record-keeping

Organic Certification and Record-keeping – What’s involved?
A Just Food Farm Workshop

Tuesday, January 17, 2017 from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Hintonburg Community Centre at 1064 Wellington St W.
*Parking behind the centre, or if full, on surrounding streets.
*$30 (Bring please cash or cheque)

Organic records maintain the organic integrity of farm products throughout the production process and require certain systems in place.

Delivered by Delia Elkin, an experienced inspector for many certification agencies in the region, the workshop will provide a clear overview of the Canadian Organic Standards, Permitted Substance Uses, and overall requirements farms need to have in place to achieve and maintain organic certification.  Please bring any specific questions you have about inputs, required documentation, etc. as these can all be answered.

This workshop is appropriate for all farmers (with large or small operations) interested in organic certification—whether you are a conventional farmer considering a transition for all or part of your operation, an established growers using organic practices who are interested in getting certified, or a new grower starting up.

Please register at administration@justfood.ca .  For questions, please call 613-699-6850 x 10.

If you aren’t able to register ahead of time, you are still welcome to attend.


Just Food is Hiring!


Job Offer for: Assistant – Community Economic Development

40 hrs/week x $18/hr @ $37,440 FTE
6 month contract, with strong potential for renewal

Conditional Offer:
Must meet Green Jobs Criteria (subsidized program with criteria set by government):

  1. Be a graduate from a post-secondary institution within the last three years;
  2. Be between the ages of 15-30 (inclusive at the start of the placement);
  3. Be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or hold refugee status;
  4. Be legally entitled to work according to the relevant provincial legislation and regulations; and
  5. Not be in receipt of Employment Insurance at the start of your placement.
  6. You must be ready and able to start work in Ottawa in December, with good time given off (including paid stats) for holiday season.


  • Assist with the Savour Ottawa initiative: marketing and promotions, event coordination, outreach and communications
  • Assist with Ottawa 2017 Agri-150 Rural Tourism events
  • Conduct tourism-readiness assessments with rural businesses in the region
  • Support existing Just Food social enterprises (Community Food Hub, OttawaKitchen.ca, etc.)
  • Write reports as required

Must have the following skills and qualifications:

  • Keen interest in, commitment to, and some knowledge of both local agriculture sector and community economic development
  • Strong event planning experience
  • Experience in community-based initiatives
  • Experience in outreach, marketing and promotions within community setting
  • Excellent writing and editing skills in English.
  • Strategic thinking and ability to think on one’s feet
  • Ability to work independently and in a multi-use office environment
  • Ability to effectively use standard electronic office tools, including social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter)
  • Comfortable and confident in speaking with members of the public and stakeholders in English (by phone, in-person and by email). Ability to speak French conversationally considered an asset, but not required.
  • Excellent writing skills in English
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to multi-task
  • Very strong attention to detail
  • Ability to balance taking initiative with strong team communication skills

Hours and Location:

Monday-Friday with some weekends and evenings based on needs of program.
The position requires flexibility regarding working locations.  Working mostly from home until the growing season opens, at which point The Just Food Farm (2389 Pepin Court, Blackburn Hamlet, Ottawa) will also be a base.  There will be many meetings out in the community. This position is a city-wide, region-wide position, that requires access to a vehicle part-time for rural meetings.



2389 Pepin Court, Blackburn Hamlet, Ottawa (Just Food Farm)
*Working from your home is also required for while new offices are constructed.
*There is a strong preference for people who are interested in these positions over several years.

TO APPLY – All of the following must be met:

  • Please send your resumé and cover letter within one attached document to moe@justfood.ca asap and no later than Friday, December 8, 2016.
  • Your email must have the subject line “Application Nov 2016 – Your Name” for it to be considered.
  • Contact information for 3 references must be provided within your resumé.
  • Interviews will be scheduled as soon as we identify qualified candidates, and no later than December 13.

We thank all applicants for their interest.

All those who apply will be contacted by email to let you know if you were selected or not for an interview.

Gardening Workshops with the Ottawa Public Library

Just Food, the Community Gardening Network, and the Ottawa Public Library are working together to promote food literacy! Here are some of the upcoming gardening workshops. More workshops will be added throughout the season! Mark your calendars and stay tuned for registration information.


June Offerings:

Natural Pest Control and Companion Planting with Robert Danforth

This workshop will cover natural pest control for organic herb and vegetable plots and containers.  Encouraging the helpful and managing the hurtful (bugs, animals, fungus, bacteria, etc.) must be part of garden design and maintenance.

  • When: Thursday, June 2nd, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Orléans Branch, 1705 Orléans Blvd.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1Tq0bNd

Adventures in Gardening With Edible Perennials with Sarah Levesque-Walker

In this two hour workshop both novices and more experienced gardeners can learn about some of the delicious, interesting, and unexpected edible perennials that can be grown and enjoyed in the Ottawa area.  From fruits to roots and vegetables, we’ll discuss selection, design, care, and troubleshooting.  To conclude, there will be an introduction to forest gardening- the art of mimicking wild ecosystems in order to meet human needs.

  • When: Tuesday, June 7th, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Rosemount Branch, 18 Rosemount
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1Wbqtdg

Herbal Tips & Tricks with Amber Westfall

A workshop that highlights the benefits of specific plants, such as Calendula, herbs, and many more, as well as the different ways they can be used/grown.

  • When: Wednesday, June 8th, 6:15 p.m. – 8:15 p.m.
  • Where: St-Lauren Branch,  515 Côté St.
  • Registration:  http://bit.ly/1ZxtOB3

Food Preservation with Terri O’Neil

Learn the art of Hot Water Bath canning with Master Preserver Terri O’Neill!

  • When: Saturday, June 11th, 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
  • Where: Nepean Centrepointe Branch, 101 Centrepointe Dr.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1TjezXX

Container Gardening with Lana Doss

Short on space, but keen to garden? Lana will talk about how to get your container garden up & running for this season!

  • When: Monday, June 13th, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Carlingwood Branch, 281 Woodroffe Ave.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1N3rBfN

Beginner Organic Vegetable Gardening with David Hinks

This is an introductory workshop where you will learn about the climate and soils of Ottawa, which vegetables grow best here, and how to grow them.

  • When: Wednesday, June 15th, 7:15 p.m. – 8:45 p.m.
  • Where: Cumberland Branch, 1599 Tenth Line Rd.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1VWPTuX

Natural Pest Control with Mike Bernard

This workshop will cover natural pest control for organic herb and vegetable plots and containers.  Encouraging the helpful and managing the hurtful (bugs, animals, fungus, bacteria, etc.) must be part of garden design and maintenance.

  • When: Thursday, June 16th, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Osgoode Branch, 5630 Osgoode Main St.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1TpPaeM

Container Gardening with Lana Doss

Short on space, but keen to garden? Lana will talk about how to get your container garden up & running for this season!

  • When: Saturday, June 18th, 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
  • Where: North Gloucester Branch, 2036 Ogilvie Rd.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1XXfXmZ

Seed Saving with Kate Green

Getting started so you have seeds forever!

Even if you only have one plant or a small mixed vegetable garden, you can save seeds!  There are some basic tips to this age-old practice to help you have good harvests year after year – and be self sufficient.

This will be an introductory workshop led by Kate Green, from Seeds of Diversity Canada (Seeds.ca). She have been a seed saver for a while and training on seed saving for about 6 years. Bring your interests, questions and be ready for an active evening as well – we will get right into it!

  • When: Wednesday, June 22nd, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Carp Branch, 3911 Carp Rd.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1WtsT5c

Seed Saving with Kate Green

Getting started so you have seeds forever!

Even if you only have one plant or a small mixed vegetable garden, you can save seeds!  There are some basic tips to this age-old practice to help you have good harvests year after year – and be self sufficient.

This will be an introductory workshop led by Kate Green, from Seeds of Diversity Canada (Seeds.ca). She have been a seed saver for a while and training on seed saving for about 6 years. Bring your interests, questions and be ready for an active evening as well – we will get right into it!

  • When: Thursday, June 23rd, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Sunnyside Branch, 1049 Bank St.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/21hNDxw

Food Preservation with Terri O’Neil

Learn the art of Hot Water Bath canning with Master Preserver Terri O’Neill!

  • When: Tuesday, June 28th, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Hazeldean Branch, 50 Castelfrank Dr.
  • Registration: http://bit.ly/1Y98pxs