Lantzville, BC, shuts down Dirk Becker’s urban farm
Dirk Becker will fight a Lantzville bylaw that threatens to shut down his urban farm.
Local food advocate shocked by district’s orders to stop growing produce on his property
By Derek Spalding,
Nanaimo Daily News
November 20, 2010
Well-known urban farmer and local food production advocate Dirk Becker has been ordered to shut down his 2.5-acre Lantzville farm because of a home business bylaw that does not include agriculture in its regulations.
People can grow food for personal consumption, but they cannot sell the food for profit, according to the district’s bylaws.
Becker and his partner, Nicole Shaw, spent five years transforming their property into a rich urban farm that produces an abundance of fresh food.
They sell their produce at the Bowen Road Farmers’ Market, which the couple founded several years ago. They are the epitome of the modern food movement that encourages people to grow food in their backyards.
Shaw and Becker have protested the order delivered earlier this month and have taken the opportunity to have the bylaw changed. Lantzville Mayor Colin Haime invites the couple to present their concerns to council.
“We want the District of Lantzville to change the business bylaws to reflect current future needs,” said Becker.