Glossary of terms

Community food centre (CFC) - A welcoming space where people come together to grow, cook, share and advocate for good food. CFCs provide people with emergency access to high-quality food in a dignified setting that doesn’t compromise their self-worth. People learn cooking and gardening skills there, and kids get their hands dirty in the garden and kitchen in ways that expand their tastebuds and help them make healthier food choices. Community members find their voices on the issues that matter to them, and people find friends and support. CFCs offer multifaceted, integrated and responsive programming in a shared space where food builds health, hope, skills and community.
(Source: Community Food Centre. 2013. Retrieved from CFC website:

Community garden – a single piece of land gardened collectively by a group of people.
(Source: City of Vancouver. (2013). What feeds us: Vancouver food strategy

Community food security - a situation in which all community residents obtain a safe, culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate diet through a sustainable food system that maximizes community self-reliance and social justice.
(Source: Hamm, M.W. & Bellows, A. (2003). Community food security and nutrition educators. Journal of Education Nutrition and Behavior 35(1), 37-43. doi:10.1016/S1499-4046(06)60325-4)

Food policy - any decision, program or project that is endorsed by a government agency, business, or organization which effects how food is produced, processed, distributed, purchased, protected and disposed. Food policy operates at the global, national, provincial, regional, local and institutional levels. World Trade Organization regulations, welfare policies, farm subsidies and labelling standards are some examples of higher level polices that influence the food system.
(Source: Vancouver Food Policy Council. 2013. Retrieved from Vancouver Food Policy Council website:

Food security – a situation that exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.
(Source: United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. (2003). Food security: Concepts and measurements (Chapter 2). In Trade reforms and food security: Conceptualizing the linkages. Retrieved from FAO website:

Food system (or food chain) – activities include the manufacturing and distribution of production inputs such as seeds, equipment; production; processing, packaging, storage, transport and distribution, and refrigeration; marketing and retail; catering; domestic food management; and waste disposal.
(Source: Vermeulen, S., Campbell, B.M.; Ingram, J.S.I. (2012). Climate change and food systems. The Annual Review of Environment and Resources 37(1), 195-222. doi:10.1146/annurev-environ-020411-130608)

Sustainable food system - provides healthy food to meet current food needs while maintaining healthy ecosystems that can also provide food for generations to come with minimal negative impact to the environment. A sustainable food system also encourages local production and distribution infrastructures and makes nutritious food available, accessible, and affordable to all. Further, it is humane and just, protecting farmers and other workers, consumers, and communities.
(Source: American Public Health Association. (2007). Toward a healthy, sustainable food system. Retrieved from American Public Health Association website:   

Urban agriculture - the production and harvesting of fruits and vegetables, raising of animals, or cultivation of fish for local consumption or sale within and around cities. Urban agriculture benefits the environment, the economy and social wellbeing of citizens because it plays an important role in creating vibrant gathering places, greening the environment, supporting the local food economy, and promoting social inclusion.
(Source: City of Vancouver. (2013). What feeds us: Vancouver food strategy)