Over the past year, government has updated legislation to revitalize the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) and Agricultural Land Commission (ALC). These legislative changes aim to further encourage farming and ranching in British Columbia and strengthen the independence of the ALC so it can better fulfill its mandate of encouraging farming and protecting farmland.
The Ministry of Agriculture is responsible for the production, marketing, processing and merchandising of agricultural products and food, and through its legislation protects 4.6 million hectares of farmland in British Columbia. Because of these responsibilities, the ministry held a public engagement September 19 to November 15, 2019 asking for your opinions and ideas about how to better support farmers, encourage farming and keep farmland available for farming.
Solutions to these challenges are needed now more than ever as farmers face increased risks and unpredictability related to climate change, rising land prices, and pressure to use farm land for non-farm uses. The ideas you submitted will ensure that the agriculture industry in B.C. continues to expand and thrive.
People participated by:
- Attending an in-person meeting
- Completing an online questionnaire
- Submitting a formal written submission via email or mail
The feedback received during this consultation period will be reviewed by ministry staff and will help the Provincial Government encourage farming, protect farmland in B.C. and may determine other potential actions that should be developed or consulted upon.
A What We Heard report on all feedback we received is expected to be released towards the end of 2019.