John, Kelly & Friends is a regular podcast featuring Intelligent discussions about ideas, business, politics, and technology.
Catch up chat...COVID, pets, vaccinations - May 8th, 2021
we chat about a lack of information and disclosure from government
we exchange dialogue about the personal impacts and experiences from the pandemic
we exchange opinions about vaccination passports
we have a fun chat about the personal impact of dogs in our workplace environment
Jen Rashleigh - Director of Partner & Community Engagement, Sandown Centre for Regenerative Agriculture
We've been actively promoting the Peninsula based agriculture sector, food security & sustainability and agri-tourism since last year via Sidney Breakfast Club speakers, podcasts and online thought leadership forums. The Peninsula has the opportunity to be a world-class center for these food related economic development and sector based innovation issues. North Saanich has seized a leadership role and created the Sandown Centre for Regenerative Agriculture (https://www.sandowncentre.com/).
We had an opportunity to chat with Jen Rashleigh on "27 minutes with John & Kelly", the Centre's Director of Partner & Community Engagement and the current coordinator of the North Saanich Flavour Trails festival. The Centre is rolling out the Farmpreneur program (https://www.sandowncentre.com/farmpreneur-program) and this formed the core of our discussion with Jen on this podcast. We also chatted about food security, food production, farm business development and regional economic development. We can't wait to chat with Jen about updates and further stories about this exciting Farmpreneur program. Thanks Jen!
SBC September 10th - Tamara Knott: Owner & Controlled Environment Farmer at Bright Greens & Steve Duck: Business Manager for the Sandown Center for Regenerative Agriculture
fresh food to market - distribution challenging / processing in Island challenging
high land costs
older farm owners dominant / succession issues / aging out with huge debt / how do young farmers get involved
high cost of labour / limited labour pool
how can the farm owner earn a sustainable living?
agri-tourism / vertical integration / challenging processing chains / supply channels
the creation of "farmpreneur"
Sandown Centre for Regenerative Agriculture (https://www.vicnews.com/news/north-saanichs-sandown-lands-to-become-agricultural-focused-community-centre/) - fully committed to the development of "farmpreneur"
focus on the business of farming
more support from government for small farming
education specific to accessing funding opportunities
accomodation for staff on the farm
grants for leasehold land ownership (soil irrigation / fencing - consider these as TI for farming)
policy & program development should be regional, not just Vancouver & Valley oriented
higher threshold for large land estates to claim farm tax
Island Good (https://islandgood.ca/about-island-good/what-is-island-good/)
3 emerging areas
small farm development
new practises for small farm production
Why are these emergent areas? Focus on high cost of land and creating sustainable & affordable businesses
Sandown Centre for Regenerative Agriculture
building future farms
agricultural sustainability & security
regenerative farming (junkyard to farm)
mentoring of future farmers & community farmers
District of North Saanich
Fickle Fig Farm
Kwantlen Institute for Sustainable Food & Systems
Tseycum Nation in the future
pay attention to our own backyard - must be able to regenerate our land
future investment in the "farmpreneur" - must be better farm based business people & entities
the Peninsula is a fabulous asset & we must celebrate & promote the food / farming / business sector to the broader community
"Shop Local Food - Coming of Age" - An online Thought Leadership Forum
Adam Olsen - MLA - Saanich North & the Islands
Lindsay Dault - Partner / Owner - Country Bee Honey Farm
Steve Duck - CEO - TIDES Group
Policy & Governance
Adam Olsen reviews the background to the ALR designation zone
we chat the "highest & best use" of agricultural land
affordable housing discussion
Business of Farming / Agriculture
is it sustainable and affordable to operate?
we chat about local food supply chains, especially in this COVID based realty
we chat about freezer & processing capacity
we chat about a Peninsula based Abattoir
we need to investigate year-round food packaging & production capacity on the Peninsula
we referenced Bright Green's Victoria operations as a successful example of year round food production (http://www.brightgreens.ca/home.html)
is the ALR designation hindering the ability of farmer's to operate their business?
can employees live on the land with this zoning?
what are the agricultural economics, e.g., wage levels & labour shortage issues barriers to sustainable businesses?
how much food is actually produced on the Peninsula?
much of the land is hayed versus food production
is the land too expensive to profitably run a farm?
is there enough land on the Peninsula for a sustainable Industry?
Marketing & Networking
who is promoting the Industry?
healthy local support despite lack of tourist business
how do we find local suppliers & vendors?
why is agriculture / farming not taught in local schools?
why not a Farm academy on the Peninsula?
huge opportunity...plans for a farming school on the Sandown Lands
partnering with First Nations
we chat about the Sandown land development (Sandown Center for Regenerative Agriculture)
Vancouver Island Economic Alliance (VIEA) - Island Good (https://viea.ca/initiatives/island-good/)
new crop production (seaweed)
we need government regulations & support to help grow the sector
we introduce the "reef-net"
Bright Green's - http://www.brightgreens.ca/home.html
Island Good - https://viea.ca/initiatives/island-good/
Cascadia Seaweed - https://www.cascadiaseaweed.com/
Harvest Route - https://theharvestroute.com/
A conversation with KWENCH Founder Tessa McLoughlin
Leadership...Innovation...Inspiring...Resilient...all words that accurately characterize KWENCH founder & director Tessa McLoughlin. In this podcast Tessa reviews the past, present and future of her remarkable work & culture club business.
Steve Duck - TIDES Group - "Agri-Tourism on the Peninsula"
We chat with Steve Duck of the TIDES Group, a Business Management Company.
we chat about food security & sustainability
we discuss branding Peninsula Agri-Tourism as the "Tuscany of Canada"
we chat about North Saanich's "Flavour Trail" festival - can it be extended over a full season, i.e., 4 months?
staycations will be the saviour for the Tourism Sector