UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Community gleaning, food injustice, and the alternative food movement in Kelowna, British Columbia Beischer, Ailsa


This thesis applies a food justice lens to explore the inequities within Kelowna, B.C.’s emerging alternative food movement (AFM). This lens is further used to examine the practice of gleaning and its opportunities for food access and inclusivity. By drawing on critical race theory and post-structural feminist theory, under the broader umbrella of community based participatory research principles, this study challenges the existing discourse of ‘local food’ in Kelowna. The primary research question focuses on the lived experience of food injustice in Kelowna’s AFM to investigate the often-invisible realities of individuals at the margins of this movement. A secondary question focuses on how a community-gleaning project in Kelowna is making issues of food injustice more visible in the AFM. Findings suggest that, although Kelowna is an affluent agricultural community with an aspiring AFM, it is not exempt from the structural causes of hunger; rather, it tends to overlook issues of food inequity because it prioritizes local, healthy, and sustainable food without acknowledging the systemic challenges to accessing this type of food. This study also finds that Kelowna’s gleaning project is harnessing the issue of food waste to create an opportunity for engaging with food justice across diverse populations. This research is not representative of a majority of individuals experiencing food injustice, but instead focuses on a few in-depth experiences that act as a starting point for understanding and contending with food injustice. The participatory and praxis-centred approach used in this thesis emerged as a pragmatic tool that shows how a food justice approach can re-create a foodscape that acknowledges those at the margins and is inclusive, participatory, and enables all people to access healthy, local food.

Item Citations and Data


Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International