The 3P Mentorship Program

Our Vision: A networked and empowered public sector using its purchasing power to lead the way to a sustainable food system.

sustainable food system links producers and eaters through a value chain that builds economic, environmental, and social prosperity for present and future generations.

Our Goal: To cultivate champions in public institutions who use their buying power to be leaders in sustainable food purchasing.

Our Approach: We use mentorship to build a community of practice and guide the cohort to discover how sustainable purchasing fits with their facilities’ values and priorities. Through participation in the program, mentees benefit from one-on-one mentorship with the program mentors and from peer mentoring within the cohort.

Participating in the 3P Mentorship Program includes:

  • Logic model development and goal setting for your facility
  • Ongoing mentorship for tracking and increasing local food sourcing and procurement
  • Facility staff and stakeholder engagement
  • Strategy for internal and external education and communications
  • Two-day cohort retreat
  • Guidance through ongoing self-assessments and evaluation
  • Final case study writing

Health care facilities, schools, campuses, and correctional facilities have a great deal of buying power.  In Ontario alone, the public sector spends roughly $750 million on food annually.  We’ve come a long way in recent years in recognizing how we can put this purchasing power to work by asking for local food.  Now, with the Public Purse Procurement (3P) Mentorship Program, we are exploring how we can make local food procurement easier.

Did you know? Beginning in 2014, Ontario’s public sector institutions may need to set local food targets as a result of the Local Food Act (2013). Learn More

Through the 3P Mentorship Program, four Ontario public sector institutions, representing more than $10 million in food purchasing power, are collaborating on a shared vision to support a more resilient food system in Ontario. A 10% increase in local food spending by the cohort would represent a $1 million dollar investment in Ontario’s food system. Between March, 2014, and February, 2015, the program will support its cohort of mentees to:

  • Track, source, and increase purchases of local, sustainable foods.
  • Engage their suppliers to source more Ontario fruits, vegetables, and protein.
  • Communicate and share successes and lessons learned within their facilities, communities, and across Ontario.

The 3P Mentorship Program is helping its cohort of public sector institutions increase purchases of Ontario food while also adhering to Ontario’s BPS Procurement Directive.

My Sustainable Canada (MSC) and MEALsource continue a longtime partnership in the delivery of this program.

  • MSC is a national not-for-profit organization with a mandate to help people and organizations make more sustainable choices.
  • MEALsource facilitates food contracts for 34 healthcare foodservice operations in Ontario as a not-for-profit program under the umbrella of St. Joseph’s Health System, Group Purchasing Organisation (GPO).

The program is funded by the Greenbelt Fund, who named MSC and MEALsource as Local Food Champions in 2012. The Fund supports and enhances the viability, integrity, and sustainability of agriculture in Ontario and Ontario’s Greenbelt.

The 3P Mentorship Program is made possible by Our Team!

Nicholas CloetThe Program 2