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McMaster Students Union

Food Collective Centre

The Food Collective Centre is McMaster’s on-campus food bank and food security resource. We are a service run by students dedicated to ensuring that food is always accessible to support food insecure individuals. Our goals also include cultivating stronger food systems in the McMaster and surrounding community and advocating for practices to improve food security. We offer a number of support resources that are available for everyone, including students, alumni, staff, and Hamilton community partners.

Expandable List

The Food Collective Centre Space aims to empower and support MSU Food Collective Centre partners and community members by providing autonomy and choice. Through self-service, partners have the opportunity to choose the non-perishable food and hygiene products that they need. Everything in the space comes at no costs, and can be accessed by anyone. We hope this space will help alleviate the stigma surrounding food banks and encourage not just students, but the community to learn, experience, and empower one another.

Location & Hours

Our food bank and pantry is located on the third floor of MSU Hub (located between DBAC and PGCLL). It is open September through April, Monday through Friday, from 10:30am-2:30pm. The pantry is typically closed during scheduled breaks in McMaster’s academic calendar, such as Reading Weeks, Winter Break, as well as in the Spring and Summer months. If you require emergency food support at a time we are closed, please contact us.

Donations of any non-perishable goods or hygiene products will be accepted by volunteers during operating hours, or they can be left at any time in the donation baskets in front of the FCC space. The following list reflects items that are needed to ensure the best possible experience for Food Collective Centre partners:

  • canned fruits and vegetables
  • rice
  • oats
  • soups and stews
  • canned chicken and tuna
  • peanut butter
  • menstrual products

Lockers of Love is an initiative that gives students and community members a confidential method of assistance in relieving food insecurity. Food Collective Centre partners can order non-perishable food items online with a unique ID code and pick them up from a locker on campus within 2 days. If you have any issues with the form or have not received an email from us please contact us at

Due to the high number of orders and our limited number of lockers available in circulation, we ask that individuals pick up their order within 7 days. After this point, we will have to remove the order and ask that individuals re-submit their orders when they are available to pick them up.

Please complete the Partner Registration Form located at the top of the page to generate your Unique ID code. After you have your Unique ID code, please follow the Lockers of Love Order Form link below to start customizing your order.

Lockers of Love Form

Why do you need a unique ID code? 

A unique ID code protects your identity as we do not require a McMaster-affiliated email address, full name, or student number. The Unique ID code also ensures that the MSU Food Collective Centre stays true to it’s Fair Variety Commitment where we ensure fair variety for all our Food Collective Centre partners. More information about our Fair Variety Commitment can be found below.

Digital Lockers of Love

The option to order a digital grocery store gift card may also be available. Following your order form submission (during the summer) or after your email inquiry (starting in September 2022), you will receive an email within two business days containing a President’s Choice (PC) gift card. President’s Choice branded gift cards can only be redeemed at participating Loblaws, Loblaws City Market, Fortinos, Maxi, Real Canadian Superstore, Extra Foods, No Frills, Provigo, Zehrs, Your Independent Grocer, Wholesale Club, Atlantic Superstore, and Valu-Mart locations. For detailed instructions on how to use the digital gift card, refer to the email you receive from President’s Choice. If you are having difficulty redeeming your gift card, please email

The Good Food Box is a non-profit project run by the MSU Food Collective Centre, to provide affordable, fresh produce to the McMaster community.

To place a Good Food box order, please follow the link below:

Good Food Box Orders

Note: If there are no items available to purchase through the link, the Good Food Box is currently unavailable.

For more information, please contact:

The Food Collective Centre hosts monthly cooking workshops. These are free to attend for students, faculty, and other members of the Hamilton community, and take place on campus. All ingredients are provided. Information regarding upcoming workshops can be found on the Food Collective Centre’s social media platforms.

To view recipes from past Community Kitchen workshops and other service initiatives, check out the Virtual FCC Cookbook.

For more information, please contact:

The McMaster Community Fridge is a 24/7 accessible outdoor fridge, freezer, and pantry complex located behind Mills library, facing parking lot B. It operates under the auspices of the Student Wellness Centre and is volunteer-run.

The food and toiletries found inside are stocked by the community, for the community to address the growing concern of food insecurity facing those at McMaster and the surrounding neighbourhoods.  

It operates on a “Take what you need, leave what you can” model. To learn more about the Community Fridge, click here. Updates can be found via their Instagram account.

The Food Collective Centre understands that the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent changes to income, employment, and social services have had a large impact on levels of food insecurity in the McMaster community and beyond. Our services continue to respond to the needs on campus and within the McMaster population through scheduled visits to the FCC space and our Lockers of Love program. However, in response to increased need and pressing nature of food insecurity support, the FCC has compiled further community resources throughout Hamilton that offer food aid services and information on food insecurity.

Hamilton Food Share

A primary resource in the Hamilton Emergency Food Network, Hamilton Food Share offers resources both for individuals seeking support and those seeking to help with food aid services. The main purpose of Hamilton Food Share is to provide knowledge and resources to organizations delivering emergency food aid. Hamilton Food Share can direct you to the services you require and offer information on the Hamilton food network.

Phone: (905) 664-9065
Location: 339 Barton Street, Stoney Creek, ON, L8E 2L2

Hamilton Food Access Guide

A resource produced by the Hamilton Family Health Team. The guide includes a complete list of places in the City of Hamilton where you can get food either for free or for a low cost. The listings include non-profit and community-based food assistance providers. It is updated on a yearly basis.

Hungry for Knowledge?  Here are even more educational resources about food (in)security:

Campus Food Report Card

Produced by Meal Exchange Canada, the Campus Food Report Card measures the success of university campuses in “providing locally-grown, sustainable, healthy, and accessible food – as rated by students, campuses themselves, as well as the physical food environment” (Maynard & Abraham, 2018). An in-depth analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of university campus food systems as they relate to issues of food (in)security.

Hamilton Hunger Report 2019

A yearly report looking at the statistics of hunger data in Hamilton, Ontario. The report looks at family food banks access data, food bank user demographics, and the intersectional issues with food insecurity such as income and housing crises facing Hamilton. Updated versions can be located on the Hamilton Food Share website.

The primary role of MSU Food Collective Centre Volunteers will be to provide customer service to patrons in the MSU Food Collective Centre. They will work under the direction of the Assistant Director during regular shifts to provide access to the MSU Food Collective Centre Space (our on-campus food bank). Volunteers will be scheduled based on their own availability, but are expected to attend their scheduled shifts. Volunteers will attend 1-2, one-hour shifts per week. Duties may include answering questions, providing information on additional MSU Food Collective Centre services, and restocking shelves with new inventory. Volunteers will also have the opportunity to provide support during various programming run by the FCC throughout the year (e.g. Good Food Box packings, Ladles of Love, etc.)  through specific committees run by the Promotions Coordinator, the Community Kitchen Coordinator, or the Social and Political Advocacy Coordinators. Participation in these committees will be in addition to the food bank shifts. Being a part of one of these committees is not mandatory to be a volunteer with MSU FCC.