The three-day conference will be held at Summerhill Pyramid Winery this October. Photo: Pixabay

Sustainable farming summit coming to the Okanagan

Kelowna will soon host a summit on how the food industry can reduce its climate impact

Kelowna will soon host farmers and other food providers from around the country on how the food industry can reduce its climate impact.

The first Canadian Summit on Climate Action in Food Systems was announced this week by Sustainable Grain, a Canadian company that works to modernize food production.

The summit will bring guest speakers to crowds of farmers and other actors in the food world. One of the main talking points will be regenerative farming – a fast-growing movement that focuses on strengthening the health of the soil.

Brenda Tjaden, founder and CEO of Sustainable Grains, explains that climate action in this context is less about reducing the emissions humans put into the atmosphere and more about letting soil do the work.

“We’re not talking so much about the emissions side of climate change or climate action here, we’re talking about the power of healthy soil to pull atmospheric carbon into the ground and have it do great things down there.”

READ MORE: Local Kelowna farm wins $5,000 for innovative hand-crafted, sustainable products

READ MORE: Pioneers in organics: Kelowna’s Sunshine Farm lights the way

Soil that’s free of fertilizers and over-tilling can do wonders for the environment, says Tjaden, who has spent the last three years researching regenerative farming.

“When you mobilize that soil life to grow the plant and to fill the grain in the plant, you’re not just adding more nutrition into the grain – that’s the essence of flavour,” she says.

The conference will feature a talk from a celebrity chef, a locally renowned chef Jeremy Luypen, Gillian Preston, author of forward-looking agriculture book The New Farm, and Emma Weston, CEO and co-founder of AgriDigital, one of Australia’s top emerging agriculture-tech companies.

Tamara McLellan, the co-chair of the conference, echoed Tjaden’s hopes that the world can return to old agricultural practices that have been left behind in the era of pesticides and large-scale farms.

“We as a system have moved away from that in such a huge way and it’s not sustainable,” says McLellan.

She expects that roughly one-third of the conference will be made up of farmers, and the rest will comprise other branches of the food industry that could stand to make improvements.

“We don’t want to cost farmers any more money,” she added. “We’re not interested in wagging our fingers at them.”

The summit will kick off with an opening reception at Summerhill Pyramid Winery followed by two days at Delta Grand Okanagan this coming October. More information is available at www.sustainablegrain.ca/summit.


Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
Follow us: Facebook | Twitter

Just Posted

Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee supports added regulations, rezoning of Three Blind Mice

The recommendations will be presented to Penticton city council at an upcoming meeting

Warmer fall weather could extend wildfire season: AccuWeather

Above seasonal temperatures are expected throughout September, October and November

Keremeos business owner affected by Telus outage for two weeks

Franchise owner of HR Block Teresa DeWit says Telus “dropped the ball” in informing clients

Cawston’s Nate Weber helps propel Tigers to victory

Penticton Tigers take home first ever provincial championship

New X-ray machine at the South Similkameen Health Centre will be up and running after Labour Day

Interior Health confirms the equipment was replaced because it was an old version

Trudeau vows to stand firm against ‘increasingly assertive’ China

China has accused Canada of meddling in its affairs

Musaic Vocal Ensemble seeks additional voices

Summerland-based choir has performed for past 25 years

Thermal imaging cameras eye Salish Sea in hopes of better detecting whales

Cameras installed at BC Ferries’ terminal on Galiano Island, and off southern Gulf Islands

BREAKING: Province approves Surrey police force

Minister of Public Safety Mike Farnworth green-lights city’s municipal police force

Concerts, workshops and more will be held in Summerland Aug 24 to Sept. 1

The Ryga Arts Festival, which runs Aug. 24 to Sept. 1 in… Continue reading

Police watchdog investigating two officers after Langley teen’s suspected overdose

According to IIO, two officers were deployed to help Carson Crimeni but did not locate him before he died

B.C. father tells judge he did not kill his young daughters

Andrew Berry pleaded not guilty to the December 2017 deaths

Judge seeks compassion for man caught on moped

Defendant says ICBC told him he could drive

Most Read