Pathways to Revitalization of Indigenous Food Systems
Decolonizing Diets through Indigenous-focused Food Guides
Keywords:Community-Based Research, Decolonial Approach, Food Guide, Indigenous Food Security, Health, Indigenous Knowledge Systems, Nutrition, Self-Determination
The 2019 Canadian Food Guide (CFG) was launched in January 2019 with a promise to be inclusive of multicultural diets and diverse perspectives on food, including the food systems of Indigenous communities. Some scholars argue that federally designed standard food guides often fail to address the myriad and complex issues of food security, well-being, and nutritional needs of Canadian Indigenous communities while imposing a dominant and westernized worldview of food and nutrition. In a parallel development, Indigenous food systems and associated knowledges and perspectives are being rediscovered as a hope and ways to improve current and future food security. Based on a review of relevant literature and our long-term collaborative learning and community-based research engagements with Indigenous communities from Manitoba, we propose that Indigenous communities should develop their food guides considering their contexts, needs, and preferences. We discuss the scope and limitations of the most recent Canadian food guide and opportunities to decolonize it through Indigenous food guides, including their potential benefits in enhancing food security and well-being for Indigenous communities. We propose to design and pilot test such Indigenous food guides in communities Fisher River Cree Nation in Manitoba as community-based case study research that supports Indigenous-led and community-based resurgence and decolonization of food guides.
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