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We delivered to doorsteps

Fresh Food Weekly Cycle

We
Gathered
Funds

We
Delivered
to Doorsteps

We
Sourced
in Bulk

We
Fulfilled
Orders

Fresh Food Weekly created food access in Barrie by delivering +$362K worth of fresh food to the doorsteps of Barrie’s hungriest residents every other week for 19 months. 

Fresh Food Weekly knows that for disadvantaged people living in the City of Barrie, its just as hard to come up with the money to pay for food, as it to come up with a way to transport food. Disadvantaged people residing in Barrie can’t afford transportation. Furthermore, although public transit is the cheapest method of transportation in Barrie, it only provides extremely limited capacity options, and depending on where residents live, it can also take up to four times as long to transport anything, anywhere, when comparing travel times to any other motorized vehicle. The Fresh Food Weekly food security program was created because of the thousands of residents in the City of Barrie with no food access. This is how they were fed for the last +1.5 years:

1. We Sectioned The City

Fresh Food Weekly used MapQuest’s ‘Create a route with multiple stops’ app to plan delivery routes since the program was launched. However, this app only allows you to plan 26 routes at a time. So when we planned routes, we divided the city into four sections: 1) Lake Side North, 2) Lake Side South, 3) Non-Lake-Side North, and 4) Non-Lake-Side South. 

City of Barrie Map Sectioned

2. We Created Multiple Stops

The number of deliveries per route was determined by the preference of each delivery driver.  Depending on the size of their vehicle and how many they felt comfortable doing, delivery routes ranged between four and eight deliveries per route, with the average route being six deliveries in length. 
 
Delivery drivers were usually assigned by Friday and we usually took the weekend to create the routes and then confirm the routes with volunteer drivers by Sunday night. On Monday, we sent an email to each recipient with a more accurate estimated time of delivery for their meal box delivery arriving the following day. 

3. We Acquired Hundreds of Volunteer Drivers

The program eventually developed a ‘New Driver Help Sheet’ for new volunteer delivery drivers. New drivers reported this to be very helpful; it was based off the most commonly-asked questions of past new delivery drivers and it’s purpose was to ease the experience for new drivers. 

New Delivery Driver Help Sheet

Our community partners

Tempo 
Flexible
Packaging

Tempo Flexible Packaging is a food packaging manufacturing company located in Innisfil, Ont., who’s been an incredible supporter of Fresh Food Weekly’s food security program since its inception in the summer of 2022. Specializing in custom-printed and sustainably-minded packaging solutions, the company is strategically located next to Canada’s vegetable-producing epicentre. Throughout 2022 and 2023, Tempo Flexible Packaging donated +11,000 custom-made and designed, recyclable delivery bags to the Fresh Food Weekly food security program. 

Tempo Flexible Packaging Fresh Food Weekly Bag Design

Moore 
Packaging
Corp.

The Moore Packaging Corporation is a corrugated packaging solutions company located in Barrie, and has also been an incredible support of Fresh Food Weekly, since one of their staff read about us in a BarrieToday.com article and consequently reached out to offer their support. When they offered to donate whatever boxes we needed to help us operate, we asked for branded bread boxes to help us transport bread loaves. Moore Packaging designers used a logo selected from the logo package we sent over. Our logo package was designed and created by Christine Whone at Actually We Create. The minimum quantity of bread boxes that could be printed at one time was 300 boxes. 

Moore Packaging Corp. Fresh Food Weekly Box Design

We implemented interventions that worked

When it comes to food literacy programs that create an impact, they need to provide more than just education and curriculum; they also need to interrupt the illiterate food habits of program recipients by providing practical alternatives. We’ve identified three legs in which food security programs can improve food literacy levels among clients.    

Charitable Status achieved icon

1. Food Quality Education & Intervention

Organic Black Angus Beef

Up until the meal box program was altered to start offering ‘meal box meal kits’ in November 2023, we had been purchasing our beef from Thorganic Farms, just on the outskirts of Barrie, in Thornton, Ont. Their beef is organic Black Angus beef. Once we started offering the meal kits, though, the additional packaging, labeling and printing costs had increased and so we started offering ground beef from the grocery store for the remainder of the program to save funds and trial the meal kits with recipients.

Fresh Pasta & Tomato Sauce

Have you ever had fresh pasta before? The first time Leah had it wasn’t too many years ago, and it was thanks to her mom. Upon visiting for dinner one night, Leah’s mom brought home some fresh pasta and sauce from a restaurant in Orillia, Ont., called Tre Sorelle, which means ‘Three Sisters’ in Italian. The difference in taste and texture of fresh pasta and dry pasta is night and day. Furthermore, the experience of eating this meal was enhanced by the fact that it was made by Three [Italian] Sisters using techniques and recipes their Italian family brought to Canada only one generation ago.

Butcher Shop Sausages

When you’ve been raised in public housing, it’s unlikely that you’ve ever been exposed to the tastiest foods this world has to offer and that's why we made it a point to include quality foods in our meal box offerings. Leah will never forget the day when she received a text message from one of her program recipients who thanked her for taking the time to get this meat. She said she didn’t know that breakfast sausages could taste just like bacon.

Cooking Education Icon

2. Cooking Education & Intervention

Planned the Meal
Provide the Recipe for the meal
Taught How to cook the meal
Gave Food to Make the meal

Fresh Food Weekly effectively removed a number of barriers preventing low-income Barrie residents from preparing healthy meals. As a result, program recipients started forming positive attitudes towards food.

 

By providing low-income families with simple recipes, step-by-step cooking directions, AND the food needed to make the meal, Fresh Food Weekly effectively equipped Barrie's most vulnerable population with the self-efficacy needed to make healthy, dietary decisions. 

Past Meal Kit Recipe Cards

Juiciest Burger Ever!

June 22, 2022

Juiciest Burger Ever Recipe Card

Quiche

June 13, 2023

Quiche Recipe Card

Juiciest Sliders Ever

Sept. 19, 2023

Juiciest Mini Sliders Ever! Recipe Card

Crispy Chicken Parmesan

Nov. 14, 2023

Crispy Chicken Parmesan Recipe Card

Bourbon Maple Glazed Salmon

Nov. 28, 2023

Bourbon Maple Glazed Salmon Recipe Card

Sweet n' Sour Meatballs

Dec. 12, 2023

Sweet n' Sour Meatballs Recipe Card

Classic Lasagne

Jan. 16, 2024

Classic Lasagna Recipe Card

Chicken Broccoli Casserole

Cheesy Broccoli Casserole Recipe Card

Past Meal Kit Cooking Directions Sheets

Crispy Chicken Parmesan

Nov. 14, 2023

Chicken Parmesan Cooking Directions Sheet

Bourbon Maple Glazed Salmon

Nov. 28, 2023

Bourbon Maple Salmon Cooking Directions Sheet

Sweet n' Sour Meatballs

Dec. 12, 2023

Sweet n' Sour Meatballs Cooking Directions Sheet

Classic Lasagne

Jan. 16, 2024

Classic Lasagna Cooking Directions Sheet

Chicken Broccoli Casserole

Jan. 30, 2024

Broccoli Chicken Casserole Directions Sheet

Recipe Card & Cooking Directions Combined

Three-Cheese Stuffed Shells Pasta Cooking Directions and Recipe Card combined
Three-Cheese Stuffed Shells Pasta Cooking Directions and Recipe Card combined
Food Storage Icon

3. Food Storage Education & Intervention

One of the things we’d like to do in the future is educate recipients on food storage techniques and methods that extend the shelf life of the food it’s storing by providing food items that come individually packaged in meal box deliveries. For a meal box delivery program like Fresh Food Weekly who’s recipient-base was 70 percent single-adults, providing individually packaged food items to Barrie residents living on welfare or disability would significantly improve their household food security levels since they cannot afford food packaging materials such as plastic wrap, tin foil, zip loc bags, garbage bags or Tupperware. 

 

Items Ideal for Individual Packaging: 

  • Bagels. 

  • Hot dogs and burger patties. 

  • Hot dog buns and burger buns. 

  • 3-4 deli meat slices (enough for one sandwich). 

 

All of these items can be frozen and eaten at a later date. 

Individually packaged hotdogs or sausages
Individually packaged hotdog buns

Preserving Food

If low-income renters in Barrie were allowed to grow vegetables on the properties where they lived, it would create an excellent opportunity for the city's most vulnerable to pickle vegetables and make jams. This is also an excellent way to extend the shelf life of bioregional foods grown and sold within Barrie’s foodshed.

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