Food Day in Canada Passes in Parliament
For Immediate Release
OTTAWA, ON – Earlier today, Bill S-227 An Act to establish Food Day in Canada was passed at the third and final stage of debate in the House of Commons.
Bill S-227, An Act to establish Food Day in Canada, also known as the Food Day in Canada Act, was originally introduced by Senator Rob Black in November 2021 and was passed in the Senate in May 2022. After passing in the Senate the Food Day in Canada Act was sponsored by M.P. John Nater in the House of Commons where it received unanimous support at every stage of the legislative process.
The Food Day in Canada Act gives Food Day Canada official recognition as day of celebration by the Parliament of Canada. Most importantly the Food Day in Canada Act honours the legacy of the late Anita Stewart of Wellington County for her lifetime of agriculture and food advocacy in Canada.
This official recognition from the Government of Canada comes in time for the 20th anniversary of Anita Stewart’s first Food Day Canada event, then known as the World’s Longest Barbecue, in support of beef farmers and ranches during the Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) also known as “Mad Cow Disease” crisis of 2003.
Since 2003 Food Day Canada has grown into a national event in celebration and praise of our farmers and fishers, our chefs and researchers and, everyone who contributes to agriculture, food, and cuisine in Canada.
“It is with great satisfaction that we finally reach the end of debate before passing Bill S-227, Food Day in Canada.” said MP Nater in the House of Commons immediately before the bill was passed.
“On August 5th, 20 years after Anita Stewart organized the first Food Day in response to a national crisis that devastated our beef farmers, Food Day Canada will finally be officially recognized. This summer, and for every year to follow, we will together recognize the work of our farmers, fishers, processors, chefs, and everyone along the food supply chain who not only feeds us but also enriches our diverse national culture.”
A video showing the final passage of the Food Day Canada Act is available here: https://www.facebook.com/JohnNaterMP/videos/1643397979422005
A full list of videos showing Senator Black, MP Nater, and other Parliamentarians discussing Anita Stewart’s legacy and the Food Day Canada Act along each stage of the legislative process is available on MP Nater’s YouTube page here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLtBtrVCOnGlWkw64m9rm5cGNOVFTesVeA
Food Day Canada will officially become recognized as soon as is receives Royal Assent from Governor General Mary Simon.
“We thank the Honourable Members of the House for considering Bill-S227, An Act to establish a Food Day in Canada.
Since the 1970’s, our mother, Anita Stewart, has been uniting Canadians through food. 20 years ago, she created Food Day Canada / Journée des terroirs du Canada, a national celebration of Canada’s unique, rich and diverse food culture.
Over the past 20 years, Food Day Canada has evolved into a national community, celebrating Canadian food and those who bring it to us. The mission is to promote and educate about Canada’s food and culture, while elevating thinking about Canadian food sovereignty and food security.
We look forward to seeing an Official Food Day in Canada living up to its potential as a positive, spirited, diverse celebration for all Canadians.
This Bill takes a historic step towards putting Canada on the map as a proud food leader, while also giving Canadians an opportunity to shop, cook, dine and celebrate Canada’s rich food culture.
We sincerely believe that an official Food Day in Canada will offer significant cultural benefits to Canadians and their families, with economic benefits for communities and businesses, as we echo our mother’s mantra: “Canada IS food and the world is richer for it.”
- Brad, Jeff, Mark, and Paul Stewart
“As we approach the 20th Anniversary of Food Day Canada this summer, the passage of my Bill provides another opportunity to celebrate Canada’s culinary arts from coast to coast to coast.” said Black. “Canadians will join together again this year and every year going forward, in celebration of our food and the people who make it happen, from our farms to our forks. Thank you to all my parliamentary colleagues for helping to raise awareness of this critical industry, not only for Canada but for the world.”
- The Honourable Rob Black, Senator
“It is with great satisfaction that we finally reach the end of debate before passing Bill S-227, Food Day in Canada. This summer, 20 years after Anita Stewart organized the first Food Day in response to a national crisis that devastated our beef farmers, Food Day Canada will finally be officially recognized. This summer, and for every year to follow, we will together recognize the work of our farmers, fishers, processors, chefs, and everyone along the food supply chain who not only feeds us but also enriches our diverse national culture.”
- John Nater, M.P. Perth—Wellington
“Anita always said that growing up and living in agriculturally rich Wellington County inspired her to tell the story about Canadian foods. In turn she took that passion to inspiring a nation in celebrating the rich diversity of foods available from coast to coast to coast. Anita always paid tribute to the farmers, fishermen, chefs to home cooks and their role in bringing Canadian flavour to the dinner plate.”
- Andy Lennox, Warden of Wellington County
“The passing of the Food Day in Canada bill is significant in so many ways for the University of Guelph. As Canada’s Food University, the late Anita Stewart was our Food Laureate and original champion for Food Day Canada. Our campus served as an incubator for this important effort, and we are so pleased to see it recognized nationally.”
- Daniel Atlin, Vice President, External, University of Guelph
“We are so excited to have an official Food Day in Canada to encourage all Canadians to come together and celebrate the incredible people in our food system and the world class food we enjoy here at home. We invite everyone to shop, cook, dine, and celebrate Canadian and share your stories with #FoodDayCanada as we shine a light on Canadian cuisine on August 5th.”
- Crystal Mackay, Director of Food Day Canada
- Food Day Canada was originally created as the World’s Longest Barbecue, by Anita Stewart, her family and a number of pioneering supporters, in an effort to show support for Canada’s beef farmers and ranchers during the Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) (commonly known as mad cow disease) in 2003
- Anita Stewart was the author of 14 cookbooks about Canadian foods and wines and was the founder of Cuisine Canada
- On November 3, 2011 Anita Stewart was awarded as a Member of the Order of Canada
- Throughout her live Anita Stewart was a long-time culinary journalist, food historian, Canadian food champion, self-described culinary activist and disruptor
- In 2012 Anita Stewart was appointed as The University of Guelph’s Food Laureate
- The University of Guelph Food Lab was named in Anita Stewart’s honour