Vancouver Food Policy Council

The Vancouver Food Policy Council works to help improve food sustainability in Vancouver, where food is:

  • Safe, nutritious, and culturally appropriate
  • Affordable, available, and accessible to all
  • Produced, processed, marketed, consumed, and waste products reused or managed in a manner that is:
    • Financially viable
    • Protects the health and dignity of people
    • Minimally impacting the environment

Terms of reference

Policy advice

The Policy Council:

  • Provides input to City Council and staff about issues of concern
  • Considers any matters which may be referred to the Policy Council by City Council or staff
  • May take positions on policy initiatives from other levels of government within the mandate of the Policy Council
  • Advises Council and staff on the Vancouver Food Strategy as it is developed, implemented and updated


The Policy Council:

  • Works co-operatively with other agencies whose activities affect constituent communities, including initiating and developing relevant projects
  • Acts as a resource for staff doing public involvement processes and civic events

Awareness and outreach

The Policy Council:

  • Exchanges information with the constituent communities and the general public about relevant programs and issues of interest
  • Engages in outreach to disseminate information and encourage participation from constituent communities
  • Supports groups developing projects to enhance the food system

Planning and reporting

The Policy Council:

  • Produces an annual work plan with specific objectives by no later than April of each year, in consultation with City Council and staff liaisons, for distribution to City Council and civic departments for information;
  • Presents accomplishments and progress to date at the annual Council of Councils event; and
  • Submits an annual report to City Council describing its accomplishments for the year, including reference to each objective set out in the work plan and any arising issues to which the Policy Council has responded.

Meeting frequency

The Policy Council meets at least eight times a year, but not more than 10 times a year. It does not meet in August.

Currently, the Policy Council meets on either the second or third Wednesday of each month at 6:00pm in the Town Hall Room, Main Floor, City Hall.

Members of the public are welcome to attend the meetings.

Time commitment

Outside of meetings, members should expect to spend at least 2 hours on email and other correspondence, report writing, and inspection rides. Preparation time for all meetings is required.

Attendance requirement

A member who is absent from more than two consecutive formal meetings without a leave of absence is deemed to have resigned.


Volunteer opportunities will be posted on the City’s vacancies webpage when available. 


  • City Staff: Mary Clare Zak, Social Policy
  • City Staff: Sarah Carten, Social Policy

Terms and Membership Composition

Persons appointed to an advisory body shall meet the following essential criteria:

Not be employed by the City of Vancouver;
Live or work in Vancouver, or have a significant body of experience with issues in Vancouver; and
Be able to demonstrate relevant experience or knowledge, abilities and skills related to the mandate of the advisory body.


21 members of the public (11 is quorum)
The composition of members should demonstrate a balance of the following areas of expertise (including professional, volunteer, education, and/or research experience):

Processing and Distribution;
Food Security, including Financial Accessibility + Availability;
Food Waste;
Indigenous Food Sovereignty;
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

2 non-voting Council liaisons
1 non-voting Park Board Commission liaison
2 non-voting staff liaisons

The appointment of civic members to each advisory committee shall meet the composition objectives set out in the Diversity on Advisory Bodies policy.

Length of term:

Committee members are appointed until December 31, 2020.
No member of the public shall serve for more than four consecutive years on the same advisory body. A former member is eligible for reappointment after one year out of office.


Meetings typically take place in the Town Hall meeting room of City Hall from 6:00pm to 8:30pm. All are welcome to attend.

2018 meetings, agendas, and minutes

Meeting date Minutes
January 31, 2018 Minutes PDF file (150 KB)
February 28, 2018 Minutes PDF file (170 KB)
March 28, 2018 CANCELLED
April 25, 2018 Minutes PDF file (208 KB)
May 23, 2018 Minutes  (216 KB)
June 20, 2018 (Committee Room 1) Minutes
July 18, 2018 Minutes  (164 KB)
September 12, 2018 (Committee Room 1) Minutes
October 24, 2018 Minutes
November 21, 2018  

2017 meetings, agendas, and minutes

Meeting date Minutes
January 18, 2017 Minutes  (1 MB)
February 15, 2017 N/A
March 22, 2017 (Committee Room 1) Minutes  (179 KB) 
April 12, 2017 Minutes PDF file (130 KB)
May 17, 2017 (Committee Room 1) Minutes PDF file (279 KB)
June 21, 2017 Minutes PDF file (139 KB)
July 19, 2017 Minutes PDF file (233 KB)
September 13, 2017 (Woodwards Building -111 West Hastings, 5th Floor) Minutes PDF file (214 KB)
October 11, 2017 Minutes PDF file (173 KB)
November 22, 2017  Cancelled

Visit the Council's blog to learn about their latest work External website

2017 in Review

An overview of the committee's 2017 accomplishments and future goals as presented at the Council of Council's on October 12, 2017.

2016 in Review

An overview of the committee's 2016 accomplishments and future goals as presented at the Council of Council's on November 9, 2016.

2012-2014 Term in Review

An overview of the committee's closing term accomplishments and recommendations for continuation of the work was presented at the Council of Council's December 2014.

Summer 2011 to Spring 2012

The Vancouver Food Policy Council worked closely with staff on a public engagement process under the slogan, "Talk food with us". More than 2,200 people took part. Feedback was gathered through roundtable discussions, storytelling-themed public events, health and education fairs, targeted outreach to ethno-cultural communities, and social media.

Contact Food Policy

Vancouver Food Policy Council:

Staff Liaison:


Resources for advisory committee members