May 15, 2019
by TOM WALKER
The recent announcement of $375,000 in new funding to support the land matching program coordinated by Young Agrarians and extend it to central and northern BC was further endorsement of the program, which has been praised in several quarters.
Originally launched in Metro Vancouver in 2016, the program now operates province-wide. It has matched 29 farmers with 100 acres of land since inception. During the past year, 19 farmers were matched 66 acres.
Eoin Carey, the owner of Alpine Roots Farm in West Kelowna, says he faced several challenges in his efforts to establish his farm. It wasn’t until he participated in the land-matching program that he began overcoming them.
“I’d been looking for suitable land for several years but met with road blocks all along the way,” he says. “Many landowners that I approached assumed I would establish a high-value orchard or vineyard that would add value to their property in the long term, but I wanted to do something simpler.”
The work of Young Agrarians to match new farmers with existing properties provided the opportunities he was looking for, with landowners sympathetic to his vision.
“I found answers to my questions and had access to lease and financial experts, lawyers and business planners, and I was introduced to a whole new pool of landowners I didn’t know were out there,” he says.
Carey finally partnered with Anne and John Whittall of West Kelowna.
“Our land is increasingly becoming idle, but we also see farms and orchards in West Kelowna that have stopped producing,” says Anne.
The Whittall’s nine-acre property was formerly a herb farm but they kept horses.
Carey is leasing two acres from the Whittalls and is planting a market garden that will sell produce to consumers who have signed on for a weekly box as well as to local restaurants. The initial lease is for one year, with an option to renew for three years this fall. [Young Agrarians photo]
Vol. 105 Issue 5
STORIES IN THIS EDITION
What on earth?
Opposition slams ALC bill
Sidebar: Protection & pushback
Editorial: Truth in labelling
Back Forty: So you don’t believe in climate change
Viewpoint: Don’t blame the cows for global warming
Ag council’s lobbying efforts produce results
Learning a new skill
Foundation’s nest egg for funding projects increases
Province will hold the line on piece rates
New CEO aims to kindle team spirit at co-op
FIRB decision prompts rethink of pricing scheme
Beekeepers see potential in technology transfer
AgSafe markes quarter century
Raspberries hit hard by harsh February
Blueberry growers anxious for new varieties
Biological controls for pests in demand
Sidebar: Pesticides in play
Growers urged to focus on fresh
Westgen celebrates 75 years of excellence
Top seller was no-show at Holstein sale
Spring show attracts exhibitors from Quebec
Cheesemakers unite to grow niche market
Range use permits under greater scrutiny
Sidebar: Range use plans go digital
Market Musings: Top bulls sell for top dollar at spring sales
Grapegrowers share sustainability objectives
Grape specialist honoured for dedication
Hazelnut production expands across BC
Sidebar: Pest pressures
Supporters take to AITC’s Sips & Sprouts
Research: Cultured meat fails to impress researchers
UAVs undergo testing for pesticide delivery
Sustainability goes beyond saving farmland
Father and daughter roll with the last of the steel wheels
Woodshed: Susan Henderson is warming to country life
Wannabe: Farming is more than just a job
Surplus, cull fruit finds new purpose as tasty snacks
Jude’s Kitchen: Special food for special moms