The UBC Food System Project (UBCFSP) is a collaborative, community-based action research project initiated jointly by the UBC Faculty of Land and Food Systems and the UBC SEEDS Program. Since 2001, the project has engaged over 1,700 students, campus food staff representatives and faculty members to enhance the sustainability of the campus food system.
The UBCFSP works collectively with core representatives in the UBC food system to assess the sustainability of the system, and respond to barriers and opportunities while transitioning toward food system sustainability.
The project operates through a course titled Land, Food and Community III (LFS) 450, a mandatory capstone course for many fourth year Faculty of Land and Food Systems students.
1) To move the UBC campus food system towards sustainability, by:
- Facilitating a shared vision of a sustainable food system among project partners
- Coordinating project partners and other key campus food systems actors in their efforts to improve the campus food system
- Creating Campus as a Living Lab projects as a vehicle to address opportunities to improve the UBC food system
2) To positively impact the movement towards the sustainability of the larger BC, Canadian, North American and global food systems, by:
- Leading as a model for best practices for sustainable food systems
- Using UBC’s leverage to influence the supply chain and broader sustainability practices
3) To offer students hands-on learning opportunities in a multi-disciplinary project with potential for positive impact on ecological and human health
In 2004, UBC Food System Project partners created a vision statement listing the attributes and guiding principles of a sustainable campus food system. Project partners and students are invited annually to reflect on the vision and propose additions or changes—allowing the vision to evolve with the project.
The UBCFSP involves multiple partners and collaborators across campus. Each year, these partners work with the UBC SEEDS Program and SEEDS UBCFSP Coordinator to identify how student groups can work with partners to improve the sustainability of the UBC Food System.
Project partners include:
- Faculty of Land and Food Systems
- UBC SEEDS Program
- UBC Food Services
- UBC Student Housing & Hospitality Services
- AMS Food and Beverage Department
- Center for Sustainable Food Systems at UBC Farm
- UBC Building Operations
- UBC Alma Mater Society
- New SUB Project
- UBC Waste Management
- The Orchard Garden
Community Based Action Research (CBAR) serves as the methodological framework for the UBCFSP. The goals of CBAR are to produce knowledge through open discourse, produce action and change, and to give research back to the community.
The student action research projects are designed, planned and executed in collaboration with a community partner and the course instructor. Students work in teams on projects addressing social and/or economic an and/or environmental sustainability of the food system on campus.
To view a list of Project Outcomes, click here.
Resources & Publications
For a list of resources and publications, click here.