Recent Projects

Agricultural Area Plans and Strategies

District of Saanich Agriculture and Food Security Plan – District of Saanich – In progress

AEL Agroecological Consulting, in conjunction with Upland Consulting, Sustainability Solutions Group and Stephanie Lepsoe, is working on developing an Agriculture and Food Security Plan for the District of Saanich. The objectives of this project are to facilitate an Agriculture and Food Security Task Force and develop a comprehensive Agriculture and Food Security Plan and associated implementation strategy to enhance the viability and long term sustainability of Saanich agriculture and food systems. The project will seek opportunities to establish partnerships in the community with individuals who have a working knowledge of local agriculture and food systems including in the areas of: production; food processing; distribution; marketing; and recovery.

City of Kelowna Agriculture Plan Update – City of Kelowna – 2017

AEL Agroecological Consulting, in conjunction with Upland Consulting and Bench Site Design, recently updated the City of Kelowna’s Agricultural Area Plan (AAP), which was developed in 1998. The intent of the project was to develop policy recommendations, an implementation and monitoring strategy, and an evaluation plan to support the agricultural viability and food resiliency of the region.

Southern Gulf Islands Food and Agriculture Strategy – Capital Regional District – 2016

AEL Agroecological Consulting partnered with Masselink Environmental Design and Sustainability Solutions Group to develop a Food and Agriculture Strategy for the Southern Gulf Islands archipelago. The Southern Gulf Islands Economic Development Commission (SGIEDC) identified agriculture as one of its seven strategic areas and secured Gas Tax and Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC (IAF) funding to support the development of a Food and Agriculture Strategy with the following objectives: (1) Re-establish local food and agriculture as a vital part of the Southern Gulf Islands economy; and (2) support and increase the long-term resiliency of the island communities in this unique area.

Regional Agricultural Area Plan – Regional District of the North Okanagan – 2014

Agriculture has played a critical and significant role in the history, and the growth and development of the Regional District of North Okanagan. Agriculture continues to contribute significantly to the economy and identity of our region.

The Regional District of North Okanagan has completed the development of a Regional Agricultural Plan as a priority Regional Growth Strategy implementation project. The Plan provides an overview of the current regional food system in the North Okanagan, identifies opportunities and make recommendations that would help support a healthy, resilient and sustainable agricultural sector. The Plan considers agriculture and the food system in its regional context and anticipates future changes and challenges.

Area B, Lillooet and St’at’imc Agricultural Plan – Squamish-Lillooet Regional District – 2014

The Agricultural Plan was adopted by the SLRD on October 1, 2014; it is the culmination of a year-long public dialogue concerning the future of agriculture in the Lillooet area. Focus will now shift toward implementation of the plan priorities and recommended actions to realize the vision for agriculture in the area. As Board policy, the Agricultural Plan will inform future OCP amendments in Electoral Area B, by aligning the policies with respect to agriculture.  Additionally, it will provide guidance for future policy making and zoning regulations.

This Agricultural Plan is unique amongst agricultural plans in BC in that it was developed with extensive input from local indigenous community members. Significant input was also gathered from agricultural community stakeholders and the public – this is a plan made for and by the community.

Sunshine Coast Agricultural Area Plan – Sunshine Coast Regional District – 2013

The Sunshine Coast Ag Plan provided a collaborative planning opportunity for the whole community, including residents, farmers, food processors, retailers, various levels of government and non-government organizations to articulate a shared vision for Coastal agriculture, and to identify the strategic goals, objectives and actions necessary to realize the vision.

The Agricultural Area Plan (Ag Plan) received an Honourable Mention from the Planning Institute of BC (PIBC) for “Excellence in Policy Planning”  regarding the “comprehensive community approach to the Plan.

Sunshine Coast Agricultural Area Plan – Stage 1 – Sunshine Coast Regional District – 2012

sunshine-coastAEL Agroecological Consulting, in partnership with Upland Consulting developed a Background Report for the Agricultural Area Plan for the Sunshine Coast Regional District. Expansion of agriculture/food production on the Sunshine Coast is seen as a key goal within the region. The objectives of Phase 1 of the AAP process were to: complete an agricultural land use inventory; communicate with stakeholders in the region to determine strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats facing local agriculture; and conduct a preliminary market opportunities analysis.


Regional District of Nanaimo Agricultural Area PlanRegional District of Nanaimo – 2011-2012

nanaimoAEL Agroecological Consulting and Upland Consulting recently completed an Agricultural Area Plan (AAP) for the Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN). The goal of the project was to adopt an AAP through extensive public consultation that will help to define the RDN’s role with respect to agriculture and aquaculture, identify priority actions, and anticipate future changes. The primary objective was to ensure that the agricultural capability of the area is assessed as part of a secure food supply for the region.



Denman Island Farm Plan Islands Trust – 2011-2012

denman farmAEL Agroecological Consulting completed a Farm Plan in 2012 that identified goals for enhancing farming on Denman Island and developed an implementation plan to achieve them. This plan built upon the 2011 Agriculture Strategy, also completed by AEL Agroecological Consulting, to further the ultimate goal of supporting agriculture. The final Farm Plan document contained comprehensive information on farm products and methods, key issues affecting agriculture, achievable goals and recommendations for enhancing farming on Denman Island that are in line with the vision of the community, an implementation plan to achieve these goals and measurable indicators of success.


Denman Island Agriculture Strategy – Islands Trust – 2010-2011

denman agri strategyA Denman Island Agriculture Strategy was developed by AEL Agroecological Consulting in partnership with Upland Consulting to determine the current context and develop recommendations for maintaining and enhancing agriculture on Denman Island. The Strategy consisted of an Agricultural Land Use Inventory, stakeholder consultation, review of background material, overview of the regulatory framework and the establishment of recommendations for pursuing an Agriculture Area Plan (AAP).

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Research Projects

COABC Small-Scale Certification Research Project – COABC – 2013

In order to increase the membership of small scale producers and processors in COABC’s accreditation program, the AEL Agroecological Consulting is leading a project to determine the barriers to certification and identify possible solutions for addressing these barriers within the BC regulatory framework. The objectives of the project are to: identify opportunities for organic certification at all levels and types of production; explore innovative solutions to overcome barriers to certification; conduct broad consultation amongst all sectors to determine solutions and opportunities to overcoming these barriers; and explore new and innovative certification models that could be implemented in BC.

Colony Farm Incubator Farm Program – 2011

colonyAEL Agroecological Consulting partnered with Upland Consulting on this project for Metro Vancouver, which included research, interviews and a stakeholder workshop regarding the feasibility of an alternative agriculture program (incubator farm). Specific recommendations for the regional district were synthesized. View the full report online.

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Land Use Inventory Data Collection

RDN and CVRD Land Use Inventories – Ministry of Agriculture – 2012

In the summer of 2012 AEL was contracted to conduct Land Use Inventories for the Regional District of Nanaimo (RDN) and the Cowichan Valley Regional District (CVRD). The inventories were carried out using the Ministry of Agriculture’s AgFocus Land Use Inventory system to document crop cover, livestock practices, and irrigation systems on agricultural parcels. A combination or orthophotos, GIS and a windshield survey were used to determine agricultural production in these regions.

Metro Vancouver Langley Land Use Inventory – Langley Environmental Partners Society – 2010

Metro Vancouver and the Ministry of Agriculture formed a partnership in 2010 to collect updated information, using a Geographic Information System (GIS), on the land use status of farming areas in the region. A GIS applied to an agricultural landscape can effectively capture, store, analyze and display information that is geographically based. Of its many benefits, GIS can improve our understanding of farming areas, help promote agricultural development and assist in identifying and handling issues important to strengthening farming.

In partnership with the Langley Environmental Partners Society (LEPS) and Upland Consulting, AEL Agroecological Consulting inventoried the Township of Langley area during the summer of 2010. The data gathered will be used to inform agricultural policy and develop an agricultural water demand model for the region.

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Event Planning

Certified Organic Associations of BC Conference – COABC – 2011 – 2014

In partnership with Peter Leblanc of Positive Peace, AEL Agroecological Consulting planned all aspects of the annual COABC Conference for three consecutive years in Chilliwack, Vernon, and Nanaimo. This conference brings together organic and conventional farmers, as well as those practicing urban agriculture.

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Facilitation and Strategic Planning

BC Association of Farmers Markets Nutrition Coupon Program Strategic Planning Session – 2015

Cumberland Community Schools Society Board Development Session – 2015

Cumberland Community Schools Society Strategic Planning Session – 2015

Nanaimo-Cedar Farmers Institute Strategic Planning Session – 2013

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