Maple Leaf Centre for Food Security Awards 4 Scholarships

$60,000 in scholarships to support research on food insecurity in Canada. 

MISSISSAUGA, ON – (TSX: MFI) Maple Leaf Foods and the Maple Leaf Centre for Food Security (“the Centre”) announced the four recipients of the 2024/25 Maple Leaf Board Scholarships in Food Insecurity.

Masters candidates, Yanick Brunette from University of Ottawa; Sharra Fullersmith from University of Lethbridge; Sharita Henry from University of Victoria; and Destiny Otoadese from University of Alberta will each receive a $15,000 scholarship to support their research. 

  • Yanick Brunette’s research will describe the role of social determinants and food insecurity on pregnant women’s access, utilization, and effectiveness of perinatal nutrition care and services.
  • Sharra Fullersmith will examine if and how food insecurity is tied to class status in Lethbridge, Alberta, and how perceptions of individual identities factor into the changing demographics of food banks.
  • Sharita Henry’s research will identify the determinants of food security within urban Black Diasporic communities in Canada and propose targeted interventions for community-led solutions.
  • Destiny Otoadese will partner with a local community-based organization to investigate the food security status of the African immigrant population in Edmonton and explore barriers and facilitators of engagement in collective community gardening.

These scholarships honour the extraordinary contribution of David Emerson, Wallace McCain, Purdy Crawford, and W. Geoffrey Beattie as past Chairs of the Maple Leaf Foods Board of Directors. Each year, the Centre awards four scholarships to Masters or Doctoral students who are pursuing research that contributes to the body of knowledge on food insecurity in Canada. Candidates are selected based on their academic standing, contribution to filling research gaps, and quality of the submission, including feasibility and methodological rigour.

“The dramatic rise in food insecurity rates in Canada underlines the importance of changing the way we meet the needs of people experiencing food insecurity,” said Sarah Stern, Executive Director of the Centre. “These research projects will help to expand our knowledge of the needs and opportunities for specific populations, including Black communities and pregnant people.”

The Centre’ is proud to support research that contributes to our understanding of barriers and interventions to achieve food security. Since the scholarship was introduced in 2020, 17 students have received research scholarships. For more information about the scholarship process, visit the Maple Leaf Centre for Food Security.

About the Maple Leaf Centre for Food Security

The Maple Leaf Centre for Food Security (“the Centre”) is a registered charity committed to working collaboratively to reduce food insecurity in Canada by 50% by 2030. The Centre advocates for critical public policies and invests in knowledge building and programs that advance the capacity of people and communities to achieve sustainable food security. The Centre was created in 2016 and is governed by a board of directors, including four independent experts.

About Maple Leaf Foods

Maple Leaf Foods Inc. (“Maple Leaf Foods”) is a carbon neutral company with a vision to be the most sustainable protein company on earth, responsibly producing food products under leading brands including Maple Leaf®, Maple Leaf Prime®, Maple Leaf Natural Selections®, Schneiders®, Schneiders® Country Naturals®, Mina®, Greenfield Natural Meat Co.®, LightLife® and Field Roast™. Maple Leaf Foods employs approximately 13,500 people and does business in Canada, the U.S. and Asia. The company is headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario, and its shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange (MFI).