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Northern Food Systems Research Group

Led by Dr. Andrew Spring, the Northern Food Systems Research Group (NFSRG) is composed of researchers, students, and community practitioners engaged in Participatory Action Research in the Northwest Territories. The NFSRG works collaboratively with partners on community-defined and led projects that build towards more resilient Northern food systems.

Key community partners include: Ka’a’gee Tu First Nation, Délı̨nę Got’ine Government, Tsá Tué Biosphere Reserve, Sambaa K’e First Nation, City of Yellowknife, Ecology North

Core Working Themes

  • Sustainable food systems
  • Climate change adaptation
  • Youth engagement
  • Community-led monitoring and stewardship
  • Waste management

Community Reports 

Ka'a'gee Tu First Nation Youth On-The-Land Camps

Ka'a'gee Tu First Nation Youth On-The-Land Camps (Word, text only)

On-the-land camps provide a space for youth to learn about changes happening in their homelands and connect vital Indigenous teaching peactices and ways of knowing with scientific tools in traditional languages. 

Agriculture In The Boreal Forest 

Agriculture In The Boreal Forest (Word, text only) 

As climate change impacts the northern landscape and expands agricultural opportunities, it is important to consider how land use changes will impact soil carbon and what it will mean for communities in the North.

Ka'a'gee Tu First Nation Firebreak Farms

Ka'a'gee Tu First Nation Firebreak Farms (Word, text only)

Laurier researchers are working with Ka'a'gee Tu First Nation (KTFN) and territorial fire managers to establish a Firebreak Farm that supports the community’s food system and adapt to climate change.

Food Hubs In The Northwest Territories

Food Hubs in the Northwest Territories (Word, text only) 

Food hubs connect those who grow, harvest, and process food directly with people. While food hubs can look different, they make a significant impact on food system sustainability and resilience in the North.

Sambaa K'e First Nation Community Garden

Sambaa K'e First Nation Community Garden (Word, text only)

The Sambaa K'e First Nation is working with Laurier researchers to integrate agroecology—ecological approaches to farming—into their planning for food system resilience. Community gardens are important sites for agroecological food growing, education, research, and engagement.

The Future Of Northern Agriculture 

The Future of Northern Agriculture (Word, text only)

Agroecology offers a model for agriculture in the North that centers the relationship between humans and the environment, prioritizes long-term land stewardship over short-term yields, works within the unique boreal landscape, and supports Indigenous sovereignty. 


Contact Us:

Andrew Spring, Principal Investigator