Filipina-Cree explores food issues facing Canada’s Indigenous communities
An Indigenous-Filipino woman from Fisher River Cree Nation has authored a study critical of the latest Canadian Food Guide for failing to address the nutritional and food security needs of Indigenous communities.
Taylor Wilson’s community-based study guide called Pathways to the revitalization of Indigenous food systems: Decolonizing Diets through Indigenous-focused Food Guides was published in the Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development.
Wilson, a project coordinator at the Winnipeg Boldness Project, wrote the study with Shailesh Shukla as part of her practicum for her Master’s in Development Practice, Indigenous Development at the University of Winnipeg (U of W).
“I noticed that every time I return to my home community to eat, it brought up a lot of questions. It was confusing to the people around me, and it was a challenge to eat at home and eat healthily,” Wilson told the Winnipeg Sun.
“At the local store, the healthier options were more expensive and did not have as high quality compared to stores in Winnipeg. Due to these gaps, my interest in food grew, and I started looking into different factors around food, whether it is cultural, economic, socio-cultural or agricultural.”
Wilson is developing a food guide with the Fisher River Cree Nation to strengthen and revitalize their traditional food systems.
At the University of Winnipeg, Wilson had written a paper that won the Sustainable Development Best Paper Award at an International Conference.
Land Sovereignty and Food Rights: Looking Back and Moving Forward from Indigenous Peoples, which “discusses the history of Canada being colonized through land grabbing and resource extraction, and how that relates to Indigenous peoples’ relationship with food,” Wilson told the Sun.
“It looks back at Canadian policies and its interaction with the way Indigenous peoples hunt, trap, farm and how Indigenous food systems were impacted by the lack of land sovereignty as well as how regaining the land can potentially improve our relationship with food.”