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Transdisciplinary community-based projects to promote sustainable food systems in Canada


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Jess Haines, Matthew Little



Jess Haines, PhD, MHSc, RD - University of Guelph
Matthew Little, PhD - University of Victoria
Paul Larson, PhD - University of Manitoba


Sustainable food systems are integral to community health and well-being. The Danone Institute North America Sustainable Food Systems Initiative (formerly called the “One Planet. One Health" Initiative) is a grant program that funds transdisciplinary, community-based work to promote sustainable food systems in Canada and the US. It supports transdisciplinary teams every two years to design, implement and evaluate actionable community-based projects on sustainable food systems that contribute to the nutritional health of populations. In this session, Canadian teams will present their projects.


  1. Learn about experiences with implementing community-based projects to promote sustainable food systems
  2. Describe facilitators and barriers to sustainable food systems projects in the community
  3. Understand how a transdisciplinary approach supports sustainable food systems

Moderator: Jess Haines, PhD, MHSc, RD - University of Guelph

About the Speakers:

Dr. Jess Haines, PhD, MHSc, RD (she/her) is a Professor of Applied Nutrition at the University of Guelph. Her research aims to bridge epidemiologic research on the determinants of health behaviours with the design, implementation, and evaluation of family-based interventions to support children's healthy eating and growth. Along with an interdisciplinary team of colleagues at the University of Guelph, she is currently testing interventions designed to promote sustainable healthy eating among families. She is also the co-Director of the Guelph Family Health Study, a longitudinal family-based cohort.

Dr. Matthew Little (he/him) is an Assistant Professor in the School of Public Health and Social Policy at the University of Victoria. His research examines the social and ecological determinants of health among low-income and Indigenous populations in Canada and globally. In particular, he is interested in the nutritional and health implications of poverty, community food security, migration, and climate change. He work closely with collaborators to conduct community engaged mixed methods research research emphasizing co-production of knowledge for evidence-based decision making. Dr. Little has worked or currently works in India, Uganda, Peru, Guatemala, the Philippines, and Inuit Nunangat (Inuit homelands) in northern Canada.

Paul Larson, PhD is a Professor of Supply Chain Management at the University of Manitoba. During 2006-2007, he was the principal investigator on a pandemic planning project, which yielded the 2008 report: Manitoba Nutrition Supply in Event of a Pandemic – and inspired Larson's Supply Chain Risk Evaluation and Management (SCREAM) framework. In 2020, he wrote a piece titled “Food Distribution during a Pandemic: A Tale of Two Supply Chains," which was published by the University of Manitoba Press as chapter 26 in the book COVID-19 in Manitoba: Public Policy Responses to the First Wave. Also, he is currently the principal investigator on research supported by the Danone Institute “One Planet. One Health" Initiative titled Building a post-pandemic sustainable food system: starting in Edmonton. The project team includes Marjorie Bencz, from Edmonton's Food Bank, along with Maria Baranowski and Robert V. Parsons, from the University of Manitoba; and the research is focused on the nutritional content and carbon footprint embedded in foods distributed by Canadian food banks. From 1979 to 1981, Paul worked with the Ministry of Cooperatives in Fiji, as a United States Peace Corps Volunteer. More recently, Paul has been on short-term aid missions to Colombia, Haiti, Tanzania, and Trinidad & Tobago. In February 2012, as a climber with the CARE Canada Kilimanjaro expedition, and once again in February 2017, he stood at Uhuru peak, Tanzania, the highest point in Africa.

Original Source: "CNS Education Webinars" Tuesday, May 23, 2023

The views expressed by speakers or other third parties in CNS webinars, events and/or conferences are those of the speaker or third-party and not necessarily of CNS.

Length: 1:11:46

Type: File

Last Updated: May 23, 2023

Name Type
Haines - Supper Savers File
Larson - Sustainable Food Systems File
Transdisciplinary community-based projects to promote sustainable food systems in Canada Video
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