Victoria’s food eco district is an organization dedicated to reducing the impact of restaurants on the environment. A number of restaurants will have the above planter boxes outside to show it’s a part of the initiative. Contributed photo

Victoria’s eco-food district gaining traction

Eighteen local restaurants commit to reduce environmental impacts

By Tim Collins

If you’ve think you’ve noticed a distinct similarity between the wooden planters outside some of downtown Victoria’s restaurants, you’re right.

It’s all a part of an environmental initiative by a Victoria non-profit organization named Food Eco District (FED), an organization dedicated to reducing the impact of restaurants on the environment.

The organization was the brainchild of a group of three restauranteurs and some interested volunteers who were passionate about sustainability within the restaurant industry. By developing and adhering to checklists of actions and initiatives, including the use of compostable utensils, the sustainable disposal of fat and oil as a bio-fuel, and even simple items like high efficiency water heaters, restaurants are able to reduce their environmental impact on the community, while providing fresh and products to customers.

The FED district is bounded by Johnson, Broughton, and Douglas streets, but Heidi Grantner, FED project coordinator said the concept has grown beyond the initial boundaries and the organization now recognizes several satellite restaurants outside the FED boundaries.

“When we started the FED in 2015 we had 10 members, but the idea has really gained traction and our number keeps growing,” said Grantner. “We’re at 18 now and our goal is to have every restaurant within our district sign on and from there it may continue to grow.”

Speaking of growing, let’s get back to those planters.

“The planters, yes,” said Grantner with a chuckle. “They’ve attracted a lot of attention.”

FED has partnered with a Vancouver firm called LifeSpace Gardens who produce unique self-watering planters so restaurants are able to grow some of the fresh food on their menus. As well, the planters allow customers of see the menu ingredients growing right there and know they’re as fresh as it gets.

Every restaurant plants the ingredients they need for their particular menu. Foo, for example, plants lemon grass while Big Wheel Burger plants kale and chives.”

Grantner said the planters provide an easily recognizable signal to passersby that the restaurants behind the fresh produce on the doorstep have joined the FED environmental initiative. Those restaurants also sport the FED logo on their doors, and provide information on their environmental initiative to guests.

The number of planters will be increasing in the near future, said Grantner, as more restaurants come on board and existing FED establishments expand their growing program.

The group plans on hosting a party in August at the Fort Common courtyard. The event will include food, drinks and music and it will give the public a chance to taste some of the great food from FED restaurants, said Grantner.

A full listing of the participating restaurants, more information of the environmental initiatives taken by each of the member establishments, and details of the FED annual summer party can all be found at get-fed.ca.

editor@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Only half of Victoria’s accessible parking meets basic standards: report

Father of a child with disabilities suggests solutions for parking design flaws

Olympic path takes new directions for Saanich’s Matt Sharpe

Sharpe wins ITU mixed relay medal with Canadian teammates

UPDATE: Barb Desjardins clinches another win, will serve fourth term as Esquimalt mayor

Three new councillors will join three veterans at Esquimalt Township council

EDITORIAL: Voters across Greater Victoria embrace progressive ideas, new course in regional governance

Election results also reveal regional fissure between core and outer communities

B.C. Guide dogs is looking for volunteer puppy raisers

Labrador retrievers need to learn obedience and socialization before heading to work

UPDATE: Lisa Helps re-elected as mayor of Victoria

Nine people were seeking the mayor’s seat for the City of Victoria and 29 candidates hoped to be chosen for council

POLL: Do you support amalgamation for communities in the Capital Region?

Residents in Victoria and Saanich will be voting on Oct. 20 on… Continue reading

B.C. oncologist changing the face of breast cancer treatment

Dr. Juanita Crook, a Kelowna oncologist, has seen 100 per cent success using brachytherapy to treat breast cancer in some patients.

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for Oct. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. Youtuber to seal himself ‘in a jar’ to demonstrate impacts of climate change

Kurtis Baute wants to see how long he can last in a 1,000 cubic foot, air-tight greenhouse

One of Taiwan’s fastest trains derails, killing at least 18

The train was carrying more than 360 people

Scheer marks one-year countdown to federal election with campaign-style speech

Conservative Leader insists that it will be Justin Trudeau who ‘makes it personal’

B.C. VIEWS: Residents have had enough of catering to squatters

Media myth of homeless victims offends those who know better

B.C. man sets new Canadian marathon record at Toronto Waterfront Marathon

Cam Levins ran it in two hours nine minutes 25 seconds

Most Read