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Canada: Young Langley farmer not surprised at downturn in Metro Vancouver agriculture

Richter said the No. 1 deterrent to farming in the Lower Mainland (which comprises Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley) is the cost of land, followed by operating costs, a lack of farming knowledge being passed on and a reluctance by consumers to buy local.

By Jennifer Saltman and Harrison Mooney
Vancouver Sun
Sept 7, 2017


“I’ve talked to farmers in the Lower Mainland and I worked with some of them here in Langley and they said, ‘Are you sure you’re gonna go into this? Because you’re not gonna be rich,’ ” said Richter, 32, co-owner of The Veggie Patch in Langley.

Richter was responding to a report to be presented Friday to the regional planning committee based on 2016 census data on agriculture.

The report shows that total farm area in Metro Vancouver in 2016 was 38,380 hectares, the lowest in 20 years. Farmland in Langley, Pitt Meadows and Burnaby fell between 2011 and 2016, while Maple Ridge, Surrey and Delta went up. Richmond stayed essentially the same.

The report noted there had also been a steady decline in the number of farms in the region. Within Metro Vancouver there were 2,412 farms, a 14-per-cent drop from five years ago. Langley had the greatest decrease in farmland, at 19 per cent.

Read the complete article here.

The full report.