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our story

I will never have to worry about food again. I am in LOVE with a bag.

Fabi, Toronto

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our farms

My mom is a tough sell and 'this is the best spinach/blueberries/ apples I've ever had in my life' was said.

Paula, Toronto

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  • The Farm Lot

  • The Farm Lot 

    The Farm Lot is a 500 square foot vegetable and herb garden located at 369 King St. West. We partnered with TAS and The Detox Market to create this unique green space on what would have otherwise been unused land. The Farm Lot helps illustrate that many potential locations for city farming exist across Toronto. 

  • Aquaponics

    Our aquaponics system takes up about 2,000 square feet, Ontario's largest. Aquaponics is a way of growing food that combines aquaculture (raising fish) with hydroponics (growing plants in water) in a symbiotic relationship.  We began cycling our system in mid-2014 so we can use our greenhouse space more intensively to provide more year-round greens.

  • Aquaponics

  • Member Farmers

    Member Farmers
  • The member farmer program at Fresh City was established to connect urban farmers to land, facilities, and a supportive learning community. Today the program supports over 20 farmers as they pursue self-sufficiency and farming business dreams. Our farmers grow vegetables, herbs, and flowers for themselves to sell.

    Click here to learn more and meet our 2015 Member Farmers. 

Our People

I love the quality and diversity of the produce.

Stella, Toronto

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Ran Goel
Founder

Ran is the founder of Fresh City.  He believes city farming can change the world by re-introducing all of us to how real food is made. Some of his formative childhood experiences include his grandmother’s stories about growing up on a Kibbutz, feeling democracy awaken in his childhood home of South Africa and his mom’s stuffed peppers. Ran has spoken on food issues before hundreds of audiences. Before founding Fresh City, Ran practiced investment law in New York City for several years. Ran is a board member of FoodShare.

Ran is the adoring father of a baby girl who, so far at least, loves her veggies.

Abra Snider
General Manager

Abra curates each week's bag and works with our network of farmers and makers to source the best produce and products. Abra has extensive experience within city farming, having worked on such projects as Carrot City: Designing for Urban Agriculture, and the Metcalf Food Solutions paper “Scaling Up Urban Agriculture in Toronto: Building the Infrastructure.” She holds a Certificate in Food Security from Ryerson University, with a focus on urban agriculture, and a B.A. from the University of Toronto in architectural design and fine art history. Abra is a Producer Board Member of the West End Food Coop, where she represents Fresh City farmers and contributes to procurement and HR policies. Her personal mission is to reconnect people to food, field, and farmers.

Hannah Hunter
Farm Manager

Growing up in rural Nova Scotia, Hannah spent most of her childhood in rubber boots. After finishing her undergrad in International Development Studies, her focus turned to agriculture and since then, she has worked on farms in Italy, Croatia, New Brunswick and British Columbia. Her desire to take a break from rural life and to farm within the energy and community of an urban setting brought her to Fresh City. She is excited to be growing food for so many Toronto tables and to share her excitement with everyone who comes to the farm! 

Kim Keitner
Marketing Manager

Kim is Fresh City’s marketing manager. Over several summers spent up in Temagami, Ontario she developed a deep connection with nature and has always had a great love for good food! Before joining Fresh City, Kim studied Journalism in Halifax and worked in the fast-paced world of PR/Social Media in Toronto. She jumped at the chance to merge her passions for Communications, the outdoors and food while helping Fresh City grow and thrive. On any given day you can find Kim up at the packing station, visiting Fresh City member farmers and friends, cooking up a delicious local, organic meal or riding her bike, looking for adventure.

Danielle Cinanni
Warehouse Manager

Danielle joins Fresh City with a variety of experience working for the local food movement. In Campo Ramón, deep within the Argentinean jungle, they call her the “cookie monster.” But at Fresh City, as the warehouse manager, Danielle is responsible for the daily operations of the packing station ensuring that our members’ produce arrives to their homes fresh and delicious.  Her passions lie in all things food – food sovereignty, social justice and anything her zias can teach her in the kitchen. As a farmer, she split her time between working the land and bringing food to market where she was a favourite with customers. It’s here that she learned that re-organizing the food chain means building strong bonds between people and what they eat. Danielle holds a PGC in International Development and a BA in International Studies. She also wants to know: “What did you have for lunch today?”

Chen Goel
Member Support & Operations Manager

Chen is our Member Support specialist and coordinates delivery operations. He makes sure your order arrives on time. It's his voice you’ll hear answering the Fresh City phone.  Chen holds a Bachelor of Arts from the International Disciplinary Center in Herzliya, Israel and has also studied at York University.  He really likes carrots. 

Kerri Mozesshon
Assistant Warehouse Manager

Kerri supports the daily operations of the packing station both in the warehouse and on the road, ensuring the quality of the produce from the receiving end to front door delivery, one bag at a time.  Kerri began her work with Fresh City as a volunteer at the packing station and immediately felt at home. Her interest in food began as an active youth soccer player where she worked with the team nutritionist to develop a diet that would sustain and support her intense training. Growing up in the urban sprawl of Toronto, she jumped at the opportunity to live in small town New Brunswick where she thrived in nature, played soccer, and studied English Literature. Backpacking from Vancouver Island to Newfoundland, Kerri gained an appreciation for supporting local markets and realized how much Canadian soil has to offer. Her love of the outdoors led her to enrich the lives of others by bringing them closer to nature through camping trips and backpacking extravaganzas. 

Paula Reynolds
Assistant Farm Manager

Paula grew up in the suburbs of Toronto and though she had little exposure to farming she always had an affinity for nature and a strong interest in science. Her love for the natural world lead her to the completion of both a Bachelors and Masters degree in Biology where her studies focused on ecology and entomology. After learning about the shortcomings of modern, industrial agriculture she felt a strong need to become involved in environmentally responsible food production. Her favourite part of being Fresh City’s Assistant Farm Manager is getting to work with urban farmers and volunteers who share her passion for organic agriculture… that, and the cool bugs she sees on the farm every day.        

Jessica Gale
Member Farmer Coordinator

Jessica grew up in the upstate New York countryside. After finishing her Bachelors in Environmental Studies and English Literature, in addition to her Masters of Landscape Architecture, she moved to Toronto. In the past, she worked at Shamrock Hill Farms, Berkshire Botanical Gardens, and various university greenhouses. Her love of all things green and growing brought her to volunteer at Fresh City. This growing season she is taking the plunge and has started Sweet Gale Gardens: a small landscape design company focusing on native plant gardens and a small fresh cut flower farm at Fresh City’s Downsview location. When Jessica is not at the farm, she can be found teaching yoga, hiking, cooking or traveling.

Mélisanne
Assistant Farm Manager & Instructor

Mélisanne has a Masters degree in Environmental Studies from York University. She specializes in environmental education and urban gardening. She is now putting her research into action through U FEED, a collaborative learning program for newcomers to urban farming. Mélisanne’s involvement in urban agriculture started during her studies in biology in Montreal. She volunteered with The Rooftop Garden project and learnt how to grow organic food in gardening containers. She moved to Toronto to take part in the city’s vibrant urban agriculture movement.

She works at Fresh City as a Senior Member Farmer, Assistant Farm Manager, and as an Instructor for workshops. Gardening and farming are for Mélisanne a social endeavour. She believes in creative, community-driven solutions for improving the environment and living green.

Karin Koo
Packing Staff

Having always worked for major companies, I joined the Fresh City team in need of a (good) change. I worked as a sales manager for 7 years, working long hours, not taking care of myself. I closed that chapter of my life and entered the fitness industry. I learned that eating well plays a key role in an overall healthy mind-body-spirit. I discovered that my true passion lies with great food... and so I found Fresh City! I like the idea, concept and values of Fresh City and the closeness of the team. I believe food is our medicine and our fuel. Treat it well.

Sophie Foofat
Packing Staff

Sophie.

Larry Armstrong
Driver

Larry

Scott Loubser
Driver

A long-time foodie and believer in the power of food as a healing path, Scott has been sprouting since the 80's. He worked for Supersprouts for several years, growing all things green such as wheatgrass, sunflower greens, etc. The setting there was of an urban sprout farm, in downtown Toronto, where the live food lifestyle was promoted, and teachers came from all over the continent to speak. After that, wanting some independence and a creative outlet, Scott made and sold live vegan food to local health-food stores for a number of years. When it was time for a change, he meandered a course to Fresh City, where passionate foodies and urban farmers thrive!

Michelle Mastinsek
Intern & Driver

Michelle.

  • Larry Armstrong
    Larry Armstrong
    Driver
  • Scott Loubser
    Scott Loubser
    Driver
  • Michelle Mastinsek
    Michelle Mastinsek
    Intern & Driver

Our Makers

Fresh, delicious, and
ethical produce
delivered on time,
every time

David, Toronto

"
Springbrook Cranberry Farm

You wouldn’t know it to look at them, but organic cranberries are a precious treat! Organic cranberry production is extraordinarily difficult as farmers work with decreased yields and increased pests and disease. But to Larry Nason and his family, it’s well worth the struggle. Larry, owner of Springbrook Cranberry Inc., was no longer interested in spraying chemicals on the food he was selling to customners. Meanwhile his daugher, Rebekah, was studying agriculture at university and discovered she was not interested in chemical agriculture either.

Despite the challenges involved in organic cranberry production versus conventional production, both Larry and Rebekah are pleased with what they have seen over the course of their three-year transition to become certified organic including the return of many native pollinators and beneficial insects. And although yields decreased during the transition, they are much happier knowing they are creating a healthier berry.

Springbrook Cranberry is a traditional family operation with everybody pitching in; Rebekah and Larry tend to daily operations, while Kathy (Larry’s wife) and Elizabeth (daughter) fill in where and when needed. During early October through Christmas, evenings at the Nason’s have been spent preparing cases of cranberries for various local markets. Prior to cranberry production, Larry was a beef farmer, before that he kept sheep and he has also toyed with large-scale greenhouse production. Growing up on an “old time family farm” he seems to have farming in his blood and he aspires to keep that tradition alive by making a family career of farming.

Sweet Woodruff

A boutique flower shop on Dundas Street West in Toronto. Sweet Woodruff is a beautiful local business specializing in fantastic floral arrangements. 

Mazak Farms

Mazak Farms is a multi-generational family farm. Initially started by Rick and Mary Mazak 39 years ago, the farm is now operated by their daughter Sarah and her husband Barry Harrison. Their family has been in the organic asparagus business since 1998, and have grownfrom a small operation to a successful organic farm over the years. You can find Mazak Farms asparagus at various grocery and specailty stores, at Fresh City, and of course directly from the farm.

Santa Cruz

As a pioneer organic brand, Santa Cruz Organic was the first to have a wide range of organic, 100% juices and blends and the first juice processor to use all organic fruit sourced from growers certified by an independent, third-party certification organization. With a history of developing innovative products, Santa Cruz Organic currently offers more than 80 organic items ranging from organic fruit juices and sparkling beverages to organic fruit sauces, chocolate syrups, peanut butters and fruit spreads.

St. David's Hydroponics

In business since 1985, and now with over 70 acres of greenhouses in Niagara, St. David's has remained humble and still believes in doing things slowly and with care. That is also why they use greenhouses - it allows them to control the environment and provide their plants with ideal growing conditions from the temperature to humidity and sunlight.

Combined, St. David's growers have over 100 years of experience gained from training around the world. Their attention to detail and genuine passion for what they do is seen in the world-class plants they produce. St. David's believes our carbon footprint should be as close to zero as possible and in the summer months theirs is. They even use water gathered from the roofs of their greenhouses to water their plants!

R.W. Garcia

30 years ago, RW and Margaret set out to make the best tortilla chip the world has ever known, a snack that was as healthy as it was irresistible. They invested every dime they had (and some they didn’t) and started selling chips to retailers out of the family van. Today RW Garcia products are available throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. And two generations of Garcias work in the family business. We use only the highest quality, all natural ingredients. All our products are verified non-GMO, certified gluten free and contain no additives or preservatives and are so wholesome that moms have started telling their kids to stop eating meals between snacks.

MaraNatha

MaraNatha is one of America’s largest producers of high quality natural andorganic nut butters. They specialize in many varieties of delicious peanut butter, nutritious almond butter, luscious macadamia nut butter and creamy cashew butter. Born of the purest ingredients, with no trans fats, hydrogenated oils or preservatives, their wholesome nut butters are the perfect choice for nut-lovers who enjoy a healthy lifestyle.

The MaraNatha story is the classic American tale of two entrepreneurs - Robert and Chris Plotnik, pioneers in the distribution of natural foods who shared a commitment to promoting good health and preserving our environment. When the Plotniks first founded MaraNatha in Ashland, Oregon in 1982, the company distributed dried fruit from the California Central Valley to small natural food stores in Oregon and Washington. As their business grew, the Plotniks created their own line of natural and organic products, including creamy and flavourful micro-batch peanut and nut butters, which quickly became a regional hit.

As demand for the MaraNatha line grew, the Plotnicks decided to leave the distribution side of the business so they could concentrate on crafting the nut and seed butters that had created a loyal following among MaraNatha fans. From that point on, MaraNatha has grown in leaps and bounds. Today, both their national distribution and sales to larger food companies are growing steadily, support from devoted customers within the natural foods community is skyrocketing, and they are one of the nation's leading producers of natural and organic nut butters.

The secret to their success is a business strategy that is as simple and wholesome as their products: Make delicious, high-quality natural and organic foods that suit an active and healthy lifestyle. To do this, they source nuts only from environmentally sensitive growers. They use only the highest quality ingredients, and they inspect every product for safety at each point in the production process - from raw materials, to the jarred nut butters that reach grocery stores nationwide. They produce all of their nut butters in their Ashland facility under the watchful eye of their dedicated employees, many of whom have been part of the MaraNatha family for two decades or more. In short, they do everything they can to provide their customers with alternative foods that taste great, ensure good health and respect our environment.

Zephyr Organics

Zephyr Organics believes that healthy soil makes healthy produce, and healthy produce makes nutritious foods. They have been growing certified organic vegetables for 21 years now on their third-generation family-owned farm. Over 100 acres of certified organic vegetables, fruits and herbs are grown in their fields and greenhouses. In fact, there are well over 40 different types of vegetables, consisting of anything from asparagus to zucchini. Located 100 kilometers from the city of Toronto in the Greater Toronto Area, Zephyr Organics connects you to fresh local produce grown as nature intended.

Learn how to grow and make quality food

We offer a bounty of workshops, farm tours and events year-round.

Whether you want to join us at an event or sprout a green thumb; we have an array of learning opportunities for the general...

We offer a bounty of workshops, farm tours and events year-round.

Whether you want to join us at an event or sprout a green thumb; we have an array of learning opportunities for the general public, schools, companies, and other organizations. From farm tours, to organic balcony gardening, to canning 101, we've got so much 'growing on'. Get in touch if we don't offer something you're interested in!

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See our Workshops & Events
Local, organic, city-farmed food delivered to your door

Organically Grown, Customize, Delivery included, and Local!

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