To facilitate continuous improvement in sustainability across the entire agri-food industry; ensuring confidence and trust in the consistency, ethics and quality of Canadian agri-food products.
Increase transparency, trust, and sustainability of Canadian agricultural value chain
Develop a national unifying sustainability assurance system and tool which builds on the strengths of existing and emerging commodity-specific tools and programs
Reduce duplication and manage costs of assuring sustainability standards across the value chain
Provide benchmarking capacity for topic and commodity-specific standards and tools to international standards
Develop sustainability competencies and capacity-building across the industry
Be a forum for knowledge exchange, mutual benefit and networking
Our Commitment to Sustainability
This project, formerly known as the Sustainable Farm and Food Initiative, was developed by a coalition of Ontario farm organizations in collaboration with representatives from the food and beverage sector, academia, and non-government organizations. From the work completed to date, an evolution of SFFI into a national initiative is the next critical step, therefore, a national leadership committee is required as well as a more inclusive name. As a result, the Canadian Agri-Food Sustainability Initiative (CASI) is was developed.
With an understanding of the sector’s needs through a consultation process that included stakeholders across the value chain, the need for such an initiative was evident. The goal of CASI is to provide a one-stop repository for Canadian agri-food supply chain sustainability data, programs, tools, and collaboration. This will mitigate the disruptive effects of operational changes required to increase sustainability, as well as maximize the benefits of implementing sustainability assurance across the supply chain, starting with farmers. While standards, legislation, and programs have sought to solve this crisis in various ways, CASI provides a clearing house where these tools, programs, and collaboration can take place. CASI is the place for dialogue and distribution of metrics, communications and tools that meet the needs of end-users, without compromising the ability of the farmer to be a part of the discussion and grow in partnership with the supply chain, in the spirit of continuous improvement.
The long-term intent of the initiative is to clarify and streamline sustainability initiatives by benchmarking program equivalencies and harmonizing verification standards.
This is not a new plan or program but rather an effort to develop a framework that will facilitate communication and reporting across the various commodity specific programs. Canadian farms are often home to multiple commodities and meeting multiple standards has the potential to become burdensome to farmers. Taking a whole farm approach, one aimed at connecting programs based on a common set of practices, will allow for sustainability actions implemented on farms to be recognized throughout the value chain.
The development of the Sustainable Farm and Food Initiative was managed by the Sustainable Farm and Food Coalition Steering Committee, a collaboration of farm and food organizations. This Steering Committee will evolve as CASI cements itself as a national program.
For more information, please see our "what we've achieved" page.