About SOLEfood

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SOLEfood Farm is a social enterprise that provides urban agriculture employment and training opportunities for Vancouver’s inner-city residents. Working alongside farmer/author Michael Ableman, community residents are trained and employed to install and manage small production farms on leased urban lots. Produce grown from the farms is washed, cooled, and consolidated at a central location, then sold to restaurants, at farmers markets and distributed to community organizations. With few significant food production farms within the city, the project also provides modeling and education opportunities to a population that has little connection to the natural world or to their food sources. The farm provides employees with a place to learn new skills and an opportunity for self-growth. SOLEfood Farm will expand to include a large network of farms throughout the city that will help revitalize neighbourhoods, provide meaningful employment to individuals with multiple challenges, supply fresh food to inner city residents, and present a successful self-supporting model of high quality innovative agriculture within the urban context.

email:  info@solefoodfarm.com

phone: 778-228-9566

blog: 1sole.wordpress.com

19 Responses to “About SOLEfood”
  1. Good Day,

    I have been volunteering in the DTES with groups from my church at a few different organizations. (Community Builders, UGM, Mission Possible). I would love to hear more about Solefood and would like to see if I could bring a group down to volunteer.

    Thanks for your time,

    Paul Papworth
    Youth Coordinator
    Tsawwassen Alliance Church

    • seanndory says:

      Hi Paul,
      Thank you for your interest! Unfortunately, aside from our farm building events, we do not have any volunteer opportunities, only employment opportunities. United We Can’s mandate is to offer employment opportunities to residents in the DTES and unfortunately, volunteering takes jobs away. Our next farm building day is this Saturday, May 8th, and we can arrange for a group tour of the farms. Check back to the blog occasionally for future calls for volunteers.

      Thanks again,

  2. Peter Bagi says:

    Hi there,

    My name is Peter Bagi and I am a photographer and writer. I wanted to let you know that I have written an article for the Food Network which should appear on my blog (www.closetchef.ca) and on their online blog shortly. I’ve included a link back to your site for people who are interested in finding out more about community gardens.



  3. Shirley Chan says:

    Hi Peter
    Thanks for including a link to the SOLEfood project the Building Opportunities with Business (BOB), United We Can and other comunity partners in your blog. We hope you will stay connected as we work to build our urban farm network.

  4. Brian says:

    Excellent work buddy, keep writing.

  5. Shayari says:

    The appeal of organic is the direct health benefits to our pets, beyond that as indicated, is the effect the manufacturing process has on the surroundings. With this in mind do a little research to see where the food you are considering is being processed, if its being imported from some other country consider finding an organic food being manufactured closer to where you live. Regulation in other countries may allow suppliers to make unfounded statements about being organic and of course the transportation of a product like dog food is very incompetent.

  6. Peter Hughes says:

    Hi there fellow food people,

    Are those raised beds built with 2×4 walls with 4×4 corner and midway posts? Nice work!

    I work with a relatively new community garden network in Peterborough Ontario. We are gathering info (especially photos) on raised beds, trellis’s and garden sheds to help people see what is possible. We hope to run some workshops to pass this info on the the growing number of Comm gardens in our area.

    So are your raised beds everything you had hoped for or would you modify them in any way if you were doing it again?

    Great tomato greenhouse!

    Peter Hughes

    • SOLEfood says:

      Hi Peter,

      It’s great to hear about the wonderful community garden/urban agriculture initiatives happening elsewhere! We would love to see the information your group finds. It sometimes gets difficult for people living in an urban context to be able to imagine what is possible. Sounds like a great project!

      You are indeed correct on the beds. They have been working out great so far, but if we were to do it again, for what we are growing, the beds probably don’t need to be as high. There’s much more soil in there than we need. Also, even with the midway posts, some beds have bulged a bit. Otherwise, they’re fine so far!


  7. Greetings SoleFood do gooders,

    I am the editor of a blog for Yasodhara Ashram, a yogic and sustainable community in the Kootenays. We are affiliated with Radha Vancouver Eatery, and one of their staff has written a beautiful article about working at Radha, and also mentioning the relationship that has been cultivated with SoleFood. I went to your website, and was deeply touched by this urban initiative that you have undertaken.

    I wanted to ask you permission to have a couple photos that are on your site, particularly of people working in the garden beds. I would like to include this in an upcoming article (hopefully publishing super soon – like… Friday?). This is the paragraph that Leah Winters has written:

    “One such farm, located just a few blocks from our centre, is SOLEfood – a non-profit urban farm that provides training and employment opportunities in planting, maintaining and harvesting to residents of Vancouver’s Downtown East Side. These farmers see the farm as a place for self-growth and healthy community development and their work beautifies the neighbourhood and improves food security.

    SOLEfood hopes to grow to include a network of farms that will help revitalize the neighbourhood, provide meaningful employment and build healthy relationships around healthy food. The Radha eatery’s relationship with SOLEfood is an example that all restaurants should follow if we want to create an urban environment that is both spiritually and ecologically sustainable for all.”

    I have linked your name mentioned to your wordpress site, but again, some photographs of people working with the earth or harvesting, would be greatly appreciated.

    Kindly let me know if this works for you, sorry for the short notice.

    Have wonderful day,


    Nicki Blatchford
    Yasodhara Ashram, Lightwaves Editor: http://www.lightwaves.cc
    2009 BC Tourism Environmentally Responsible Tourism Award
    Named Canada’s Best Yoga Retreat

  8. Tara Woods says:

    This is super brilliant. I wish I lived in Vancouver just so I could buy produce from SOLEFood. Keep up the amazing work, kids.

  9. hey says:

    Hey SOLEood,

    what a nice idea 😉 keep the good work and hope you will have more space to farm, go LOCAL go….

  10. sam says:

    Do you carry grain or grass fed beef and where does it come from? Also do you have chicken at all and is it organic/hormone free?

  11. Ashlea says:

    I’m curious to know what year SOLEfood was founded.

Check out what others are saying...
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  2. […] the DTES can be a rough place. We appreciate those who roll their sleeves up to make a difference. Community Gardens | solefood@unitedwecan.ca Pivot Legal Society | uses the law to address the root causes that […]

  3. […] let’s start in the basement, which will for 24 months be the incubating heart and soul of SOLEFood, the enterprising non-profit started by United We Can. Through their farm in the parking lot of the […]

  4. […] method (the greenhouse is on a gravel pad), similar to that being used by  United We Can at their SOLEFood Farm on East Hasting Street in Vancouver, BC. SOLEFood Farm's raised bed […]

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