EXCLUSIVE: Health Canada made videos to promote their zucchini muffins, quinoa salad

EXCLUSIVE: Health Canada made videos to promote their zucchini muffins, quinoa salad

Health Canada produced almost two dozen social media videos to promote government-approved recipes such as their “marvellous muffins” and “colourful quinoa salad.”

The documents were provided in response to an order paper question submitted on February 5, 2020 by Conservative Party MP Dean Allison (Niagara West), who proposed the following question for response:

With regard to videos produced by the government for public distribution, since January 1, 2019: (a) what are the details of all such videos, including (i) date, (ii) duration, (iii) title, (iv) purpose, (v) intended audience; (b) for each video, what were the total expenditures, broken down by type of expense; and (c) through which Internet sites, social media platforms, television stations, or streaming sites was each video distributed?

A list of hundreds of social media videos were returned.

Health Canada: Try the zucchini muffins

Let's look at some of the videos produced by Health Canada.

In order to “encourage Canadians to prepare health meals approved and created under the new Canada's Food Guide,” Health Canada produced a series of minute-long video recipes aimed at Canadians aged 18-35 to be posted on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter and Facebook.

Recipe videos were produced in both English and French. Full recipes for the following dishes, and many more, are available here on the Government of Canada's website.

  • Zesty bean dip and chips
  • Lunchbox tuna salad wraps
  • Crispy chickpeas
  • Fun flatbread pizza
  • Cheesy broccoli toast
  • Greek style couscous and egg wraps
  • Creamy dreamy hummus
  • Marvellous muffins
  • Colourful quinoa salad
  • Strawberry pancakes
  • No bake toasted oat granola bars

Total expenditures are listed at $245.63 for ingredient. The cost to produce the videos was not released, as they were produced internally.

Full recipes for the above dishes, and many more, are available here on the Government of Canada's website. It's worth the browse to see what a government cookbook looks like — the marvellous muffins contain hidden zucchini, and the creamy dreamy hummus (featuring a single clove of garlic) includes a variation which swaps chickpeas and tahini for reduced sodium navy beans.

At the time of this writing, their hummus video has four retweets and 22 likes:

The Government also had an official recipe for moose, which are shot wild. This has some perplexing contradictions considering the Trudeau Liberal's hard stances on gun rights.

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