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GUO Update, fall 2012

Getting Going with Organic Food...
In early fall of 2012, Gillis Elementary School in Tyndall, Manitoba began ordering from Fresh Option Organic Delivery (F.O.O.D).  They now feature local organic food in their cafeteria.  Wild Strawberry Child Care in Winnipeg is set to be the newest addition to the Growing Up Organic program.  They are slated to begin ordering from F.O.O.D. shortly.
Alternative Food Systems...
In August of 2012, Julie Fine, GUO volunteer, met with Forrest McGregor, a research assistant with the Child Nutrition Council of Manitoba and the University of Manitoba.  The two met to discuss how the successes and challenges of the Growing Up Organic program could inform an alternative food system and school nourishment project.

The Growing Up Organic program is currently staffed by volunteers.  Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 204.779.8546 for more information.
What is "Growing Up Organic"?


Growing Up Organic (GUO) is a national initiative of Canadian Organic Growers (COG), and locally of the Organic Food Council of Manitoba-COG.  This initiative is designed to increase the amount of organically grown food in Canadian institutions, beginning with child care centres.  The primary motivation for starting with child care centres is to ensure that the most vulnerable members of our society, young children, have access to organic food.

GUO also works with elementary, junior high, and senior high school teachers and administrators to increase the amount of organic food served in their cafeterias and other food programs.


View a pdf of the Growing Up Organic FAQ


Growing up Organic   Growing up Organic   Growing up Organic

Participating GUO childcare centre urban farm tour; high school GUO composting workshop; public outreach composting workshop.


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School garden; participating GUO childcare centre taste testing; participating GUO childcare centre bakery tour.

What are the goals of the Growing Up Organic project?


  • To link institutions with locally grown organic food sources;
  • To increase the number of organic farms; and 
  • To develop local rural and urban organic food systems.


How is the Organic Food Council of Manitoba involved?


Growing up Organic   Growing up Organic   Growing up Organic

Sharon Taylor at Wiens Shared Farm market stand; Janine Gibson, Chair of OFCM-COG,NITC presenting educational session; child at a GUO farm tour.

The Organic Food Council of Manitoba (OFCM-COG) is one of four COG chapters heading up the Growing Up Organic initiative. Growing Up Organic can also be found through Island Natural Growers, Salt Spring Island; Ottawa Canadian Organic Growers; and Perth/Waterloo/Wellington.

Here in Manitoba, we are working with a variety of institutions to increase the presence of local organic food. There are several aspects to our integrated program.  We connect facilities with local organic food sources. We provide information sessions, educational materials, menu and recipe planning and organic farm tours. We work one-on-one with child care centres and schools and tailor the program to meet their needs



GUO is Branching Out

Growing Up Organic now has 21 locations participating or recently signed up! Each location participates by either ordering through a local distributor or purchasing organic food from Manitoba stores.  Locations order differing amounts, depending on factors such as budget, programming, and number of program participants. The goal of GUO Manitoba is to gain commitment to the program from 35 child care centres by year five of the project and we are well on our way to realizing that goal.


Growing Up Organic doesn’t only aim to get locally grown organic food onto the plates of children in Manitoba, we also offer up some fun and educational workshops and tours for participating locations.


Participating Locations
• Casa Montessori & Orff School Inc

• Chancellor Before and After School Program

• Children's House Montessori
• Cresentwood Children's Centre
• Day Nursery Centre

• Eco-U Kids Camp (WASC)

• Edible Heritage Youth Garden
• K.I.D.S. Inc

• Laugh N Learn
• LaVerendrye School Before and After School Program
• Provincial Employees Day Care (Osborne Street location)

• Provincial Employees Day Care (Portage Ave location)

• Sisler High School Foods and Nutrition Program
• Taking Care!
• U of W Student Association (Soma Café)
• Whyte Ridge Before and After School Program

*Updated July 2010

Contact us to find out how to add your centre to the list!


How do I get involved?

If you are a parent, childcare provider, teacher, school administrator, farmer, producer, volunteer or simply interested in getting involved in the project, please contact us to receive more details about the program. 

Child care centres or other institutions will review the project material and establish a trial period for commitment to the Growing Up Organic project.  We will then help integrate affordable organic food into the facility. 


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Thank you Marnie and team for your continuing support of organics in MB. Thank you for your recent gift to Dr. Marten Entz & the Natural Systems Agriculture program, celebrating 25 years of organic research in Manitoba!

farm tours 2018

A large number of tours have been planned for this summer. You won't want to miss any, but can probably only make a few. They are listed here.

August Events, August 16 update

Investing in Organic Agriculture

This is a must read presentation advocating for Canadian government support for organic agriculture. Download the PDF here.

Canadian Organic Standards 2018

The Canadian Organic Standards have been updated. We have uploaded them and they can be seen here, together with a summary prepared by the Organic Federation of Canada. You should note also that there is a provision for feedback, and feedback is invited.

Other new organic extension materials available

Green Manure Took Kit This free downloadable kit produced by the Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada with funding from the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative has five modules that will help you understand green manures and how to choose the right green manure for your farm conditions. Click here to begin your green manure journey.

OFCM Organic Week 2018 Landing

Check out the COG Lending Library! 

The COG lending library contains over 1500 titles on organic agriculture and related topics, in books, video and audio tapes, DVDs, articles and periodicals.  The resources of the lending library of Canadian Organic Growers are available to the Canadian public.  Items may be borrowed by mail free of charge.

OFCH half page no promo code

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