HQP and AFI Scholars Explore Food Security and Circular Economy in Guelph

Mon, 20, March, 2023 by Food from Thought

A group of Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP) and Arrell Food Institute scholars from various academic disciplines recently participated in a field trip on March 13 to learn about food security organizations and circular economy initiatives in the City of Guelph.

The scholars’ first stop was at The SEED warehouse, a non-governmental organization dedicated to addressing food insecurity in the region. The students learned about the food security initiatives of the organization and how it provides fresh, healthy food to those in need. They were impressed by the organization’s commitment to community outreach and engagement.

The group then visited Noki Farms, an indoor farm in downtown Guelph that specializes in growing gourmet mushrooms and microgreens. Noki Farms is a current community partner for this year’s cohort, and the students were fascinated by the innovative technology used in the farm’s operations.

The field trip ended at 10C Shared Space, a community innovation and collaboration hub. The scholars learned about the Smart City Challenge and ongoing circular economy initiatives here. They were impressed by the community’s commitment to sustainability and innovation.

As a fitting end to their field trip, the group enjoyed a wonderful dinner provided by Community FEWD (Food Equity with Dignity). This meal service takes high-quality fresh produce and food items destined for the landfill and transforms them into delicious offerings for the community. The students were inspired by the organization’s commitment to reducing food waste and promoting food security.

Overall, the scholars had a fantastic experience in Guelph and gained valuable insight into the workings of the city’s food security and circular economy organizations. They left with a greater understanding of the importance of sustainability and community engagement in creating a more equitable and sustainable future.

The HQP program is jointly funded by Food from Thought and the Ontario Agri-Food Innovation Alliance. It supports the development of highly skilled graduates to become future researchers, policymakers, business leaders and innovators who can meet the changing demands of the agri-food industry.

Through this unique experiential training and education, the University of Guelph is filling the needs of the agri-food workforce and equipping its graduates to enter a dynamic industry.

Meet our HQP Scholars and learn more about what they’re studying; what motivates them; and what impact their research is poised to make.