Have you heard about Food Day Canada (FDC), an annual celebration of the food we eat? Established in 2003, FDC is an exciting opportunity to be loud about and proud of everyone that plays a role in food production, from farm-to-table, including the countless farmers, fishers, chefs, researchers, home cooks and manufacturers (like Queen Street Bakery!). It’s a time to think about those who work hard every day to provide Canadians with an abundance of nutritious and delicious foods to help keep us healthy! FDC’s overall mission is to actively promote the growth and study of Canadian food culture! This year, Food Day Canada will take place on August 3, 2019.
How was Food Day Canada established?
How did the day come together? FDC started 2003 as “The World’s Longest Barbeque,” a response to the sanction of Canadian beef exports and the difficulties it imposed on Canada’s agricultural community. The Barbeque evolved into FDC, a celebration of culinary heritage, and one of the world’s best managed food systems. Anita Stewart, celebrated Canadian culinary author and food activist, went on to formally create FDC.
More about Anita Stewart
FDC was established as a showcase of Anita Stewart’s life’s work and many years of research. A highly acclaimed culinary author and food activist, you could also call her a food explorer—she started to travel across Canada in 1983, writing about all about the nation’s food and its diversity. She explored First Nations’ communities, country inns, farmer’s markets, and more. The author of 14 culinary books, and published in all major Canadian news and food publications, she was made a Member of the Order of Canada in 2012, was awarded a Doctor of Laws (Honouris Causa), and has received many additional honours.
How you can get involved
There are opportunities for all Canadians to get involved in the many celebrations that take place during FDC. For example, there are a number of restaurants all across the country participating in the festivities that you can check out. Click on this link and select your province to learn more at the Food Day Canada Restaurants page. Make sure you verify with the restaurants you dine at which menu items are gluten free and free of potential cross contamination.
Canadians are also encouraged to celebrate FDC by cooking a delicious meal with only Canadian ingredients, and to honour our history. As Canadians, FDC is an open invitation to share our food and our stories with each other to express our cultural diversity, and of course to have fun! Discover a wide selection of Canadian foods, flavours and recipes on the Food Day Canada Recipes page (note not all recipes are gluten free) and of course you can prepare a meal using one of the gluten free recipes listed on our Queen Street Bakery Recipes page. Shop for local ingredients. Get inspiration on Food Day Canada’s Shop Like A Canadian page (note not all ingredients are gluten free). Experiment with First Nations and French Canadian recipes as well. With Anita Stewart’s inspiration, we should all aim to explore more of this beautiful country we call Canada. Visit different provinces, the land and the people. Above all, taste the abundance of in-season Canadian foods, with those you care about!
About the Author: Living with celiac disease, Lisa Cantkier is a writer and educator focused on nutrition and health.