The local food production scene may soon get another boost, with Winderberry Nursery seeking to add a small commercial kitchen to their operations.
Owners Lin and Oliver Egan have made an application for Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR) non-farm use, which was support by the Regional District of East Kootenay board of directors and the board’s most recent meeting on Friday, June 6th.
“It’s still in process at this point,” said Mr. Egan of the application, which has now gone on to the Agricultural Land Commission for consideration.
“It’s a matter of them reviewing it, so we’re just waiting,” said Mr. Egan.
The facility the Egans are proposing to build would be about 25 feet (7.5 metres) by 35 feet (10.5 metres) and would function as a certified commercial kitchen.
“We’d be using food from the farm and serving it out of the kitchen. It wouldn’t be a sit-down kind of restaurant, but it would allow us to do take-away food and pies, stuff like that,” said Mr. Egan, adding customers would be able to snack away on kitchen food as they peruse the nursery.
The whole operation would be a great example of food-to-fork philosophy, he said.
If approved, the kitchen would adjoin the nursery’s retail outlet.
The recently passed Bill 24 does not affect this application for ALR non-farm use, which is proceeding through the normal Agricultural Land Commission approval process. The changes proposed in Bill 24 will not take effect until regulations based on those changes are drawn up.