MPA Major Research Papers

Date of Award


Degree Type

Major Research Paper

Degree Name

Master of Public Administration


Political Science


Jennifer Kirkham

Geographical Areas

British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut


Access to healthy food, including an adequate supply of fresh fruit and vegetables, is a global health and social issue. The methods of accessing and distributing fresh fruit and vegetables has changed over the past several decades, with greater reliance on import and export of goods, changes in farming and agriculture industries and practices, and acknowledgement of the role of poverty and food insecurity issues. Good Food Box (GFB) programs, primarily intended to reach audiences most vulnerable to food insecurity, distribute fresh fruit and vegetables at affordable, lower than regular retail prices to voluntary participants. This paper explores the factors that contribute to sustainability of GFB programs in Canada, using an online survey methodology of all known existing and discontinued GFB programs across Canada. It tests if the factors identified in the literature search do, in fact, contribute to GFB program sustainability in practice in Canada. Case selection was conducted through a review of GFB qualitative research completed in 2013, a general internet search, and snowball sampling of other programs, through a review of publicly available information of those programs and through known programs referring them to the lead researcher. The research study finds that two of the five factors identified in the literature, bricolage and network collaboration, contribute to GFB program sustainability in Canada. Three other factors, policy alignment, Board of Directors governance, and effective performance management were not found to be statistically significant contributors to GFB program sustainability in Canada.