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BMW Forces of Nature Series: Fresh City Farms

Do you know where the food you eat everyday was grown or produced? Are there local initiatives in your city focusing on sustainable food practices?

As BMW pursues their mission of being the world's most sustainable automotive manufacturer, they have set out to find and showcase similar sustainable endeavors globally through a new and exciting project. Continuing the showcase of sustainability trailblazers, the second episode of our Forces of Nature series features Ran Goel, founder of Fresh City Farms, a company contributing to food security, helping to reduce emissions by making food systems more local and developing a more urban human scaled organic food system in Toronto.

Following some time in law school, Goel began to examine how fragile the systems we rely on for food were.

"70% of our blue planet is water, 30% is land. And of that 30% about half of that is used for food production in various ways," Goel explained, "When we think about farms and farmers, they are literally stewards of most of the earths surface. If we don't get that part right, we're talking about half of the earth's surface that is not being sustainably treated that can carry on for generations."

Goel soon realized there were no local retailers that were providing easy access to sustainable food at any scale. His research turned to a lifelong passion, as Goel fell in love with urban farming, seeing it as "an opportunity to transform how people think about food by putting a face to the farmer and a name to the farm."

From this, Fresh City Farms was born. Goel operates the 11-acre urban farm that grows sustainable food while also being a hub for community and education on food justice and sustainability. Fresh City Farms is also a brick-and-mortar and online grocer that collates the produce from other farmers to help consumers make food choices that are better for the world, creating an entire urban food chain, from farm to table, that creates a local and sustainable food system right in Toronto.

Fresh City Farms also partners with other up and coming farmers to redefine what our food chain can look like as Goel pursues his goal of changing the way people thought about their food, where it comes from and teaching more sustainable practices.

Most important to Goel is sustainability. As CEO of Fresh City Farms, this means "consuming in a way that allows future generations to live a life even richer than ours." However, consumption doesn't end with food. It affects everything, even the materials, the wood, the cloth and the metal around us.

In a show of appreciation and support, BMW gifted Fresh City Farms $10,000 to further his innovation, as the brand continues to work to support the people who are changing the world through ingenuity and determination, and tell their stories.

Click here to learn more about sustainable sourcing as well as BMW's mission towards a future of clean energy.

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