Zoo Food for Life

New year, same big appetite!

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact your Toronto Zoo’s operations and revenue sources into 2021. Toronto Zoo and Terra Lumina have been closed to the public since November 23rd, 2020 until further notice and the $1 million annual cost of food for our 5,000 animals is normally funded through our paid guest parking. Phase two of our Zoo Food For Life campaign will help to offset lost revenues and ensure funding for the Zoo’s Nutrition Program in 2021.

Despite being closed to our valued guests and members, your dedicated Zoo team continues to provide world-class care to over 5,000 animals, which includes a healthy, balanced and nutritious diet. We launched our first Zoo Food for Life fundraising campaign in April 2020, one month into the initial pandemic closure. The response was overwhelming and meant we had guaranteed funds for food right through to the end of December 2020. We are now looking to secure funds to have that assurance through these continued uncertain times.

Click here to learn more about the Toronto Zoo's Nutrition Program

The Toronto Zoo's Nutrition Program

Toronto Zoo was the first zoo in North America to employ a full-time nutritionist. Currently there are three full-time Zoo nutritionists in Canada, two of which work at the Toronto Zoo. The Zoo’s nutrition staff work in the Wildlife Nutrition Centre (WNC) which comprises of a Food Production Unit and a Nutrition Research Unit, which work together to ensure top quality animal health.

  • Food Production Unit: Professional nutritionists design, source and prepare 430 different “menus” a week, and feed over 4,500 animals every day.

  • Nutrition Research Unit: Dietary advice is provided to all of the Zoo’s animals, including endangered species like the black-footed ferret, Vancouver Island marmot and Eastern loggerhead shrike. Research supports animal welfare and conservation of species both at the Toronto Zoo and in the wild.