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The Regional District seeks input into the Draft Regional Agricultural Plan

Posted Monday, April 20, 2015

The Regional District of North Okanagan, with assistance from Upland Consulting, has completed the first draft of the Regional Agricultural Area Plan, which was presented to the Regional Agricultural Advisory Committee on April 16, 2015.

“We would like to sincerely thank everyone who gave their time, expertise and passion for agriculture to help shape this plan,” said Mike Macnabb, Electoral Area “C” Director and Vice-Chair of the Regional Agricultural Advisory Committee. “This is a unique opportunity for North Okanagan residents and the agricultural community to contribute to a Plan that will guide future decisions on local agriculture and food production.”

The Agricultural Plan process was initiated in December 2013 with significant input provided by the member municipalities and the Regional Agricultural Advisory Committee, composed of Regional District Directors and local agricultural producers and stakeholders. Throughout the planning process, valuable feedback from both the public and agricultural stakeholders was gathered through extensive community engagement which included public open houses, surveys, focus groups and face-to-face interviews. Based upon the broad input received, the draft Plan focuses on seven priorities:

  1. Protecting farmland and farmers
  2. Strengthening the local agricultural economy
  3. Encouraging sustainable agricultural practices
  4. Managing clean and accessible water
  5. Ensuring farmland availability for emerging farmers
  6. Creating supportive government policies and regulations
  7. Raising awareness and education

The Regional District will be holding two open houses to present the draft Plan to the public and the regional agricultural community and provide an opportunity for community feedback. These open houses will occur on:

  • Friday, May 1, 2015 (4pm – 7pm) at the White Valley Community Centre, 2250 Shields, Lumby, BC
  • Saturday, May 2, 2015 (9am – 12noon) at the at the Horticulture Building, IPE Fairgrounds, 3355 Pleasant Valley Road, Armstrong, BC

The Regional District encourages all the residents and agricultural stakeholders to provide comments if you are unable to attend any of the open houses either by email to [email protected] or by letter to the RDNO office (Attn: Agricultural Plan), 9848 Aberdeen Road, Coldstream, BC V1B 2K9.