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How can food businesses be an agent for social/cultural and environmental change?
11:30-12:30. Day 2
Panelists: Levi Lawrence (Real Food Connections), Stephane Sirois (Ce D'ici) Sean Gallagher (Local Food Source), Lois Corbett (BuyLocalNB)
Facilitator: Christina Fowler (Saint John Learning Exchange)
Taking the local food movement to the next level. Getting New Brunswick to a leadership position in this sector.
Executive Director of CÉD’ICI an innovative social enterprise who operates food services in several schools and the Caféd’ici.
Community development Director at Le Centre communautaire Sainte-Anne.
Health and wellness advocate, marathon runner, soon to be triathlete.
Sean’s food philosophy is simply to get back to the basics. Good ingredients equals good food. He believes that time should be invested in cooking and enjoying good food.
He also strives to teach others about how the interconnection between good food, health and community adds to the value of our culture, our economy, our land and our quality of life.
Levi Lawrence, founder of Real Food Connections, is a cook at heart, a passionate entrepreneur with and a total self confessed food geek.
With 8 years in the food and beverage industry as well as an undergraduate business degree from the University of New Brunswick he has been working to transform our local food industry in NB since 2010.
Real Food Connections is currently a local food grocery business representing over 130 small and medium scale food producers in Southern NB. They have a grocery store, a web store and offer wholesale distribution to other retailers, restaurants and institutions. Their main priorities are Traceability, Accountability and improving the food culture and agriculture in NB.
While Levi is the lead entrepreneur for Real Food Connections, his wife Kim and parents Catherine and Bev are full partners and lend structure and practicality to his big ideas.
Christina Fowler is the Executive Director of the Saint John Learning Exchange, a non-profit organization working to reduce poverty through innovative education and employment programs for the past 30 years. She is passionate about finding ways to equip individuals with the skills they need to provide a better future for themselves and their families.
Christina attended UNB Saint John and has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology (honours) with a minor in Criminal Justice. Christina is an innovative leader striving to meet the opportunities and challenges of the non-profit field by thinking outside the box. She is always looking at different ways to build revenue streams that make the Learning Exchange more self-sustaining.
Under Christina’s leadership, two social enterprises, Voila! Cleaning Services and Stone Soup Catering were created. Both companies share a holistic mandate focusing on low environmental impact, building skills, and employing former Learning Exchange participants at a living wage.