Mission & Purpose


Mission

The Foodlands Cooperative of BC (FLCBC) is a registered society founded in 2017 with the mission to secure and hold land in trust and promote the protection and utilization of food providing lands across BC. FLCBC works with landowners, farmers, local communities and leaders in the agricultural and land trust sectors to develop and support community foodlands models and build healthy, local food systems. FLCBC recognizes the diversity of food harvesting systems, acknowledges the colonial history of agricultural land policies, and participates in a dialogue between farmland protection and access initiatives and Indigenous land rights.

FLCBC upholds and demonstrates the public and community interest for sustainable land use and is at the forefront of encouraging alternative forms of land ownership to ensure our agricultural lands remain in production in perpetuity.

The Purposes of the Foodlands Cooperative of BC are:

  1. To secure, protect and steward land that is to be used for the promotion of sustainable agriculture and local food provisioning for the benefit of communities in British Columbia, while recognizing, respecting and including Indigenous food systems;
  2. To advance education by supporting public workshops, training, and mentoring programs related to sustainable agriculture and local food provisioning for the benefit of communities in British Columbia.

History

Between 2006-2012, The Land Conservancy of BC (TLC) played an important role in farmland acquisition in BC, partnering with FarmFolk CityFolk (FFCF) in the creation of a Community Farms Program to manage land. In 2013, TLC, suffering significant financial difficulties, ceased acquiring land, resulting in a clear and pressing need to create a new land trust. FarmFolk CityFolk partnered with the Capital Region Food and Agriculture Initiative Roundtable (CRFAIR) and UBC’s Centre for Sustainable Food Systems, funded by the Real Estate Foundation, to identify feasible models for a provincial body to hold farm and foodlands. The Farmland Access Research Project, work found that most existing trusts in BC hold land for conservation purposes and those that hold active farmland are geographically limited in scope and resources. A conclusion reached was that a provincial trust would have greater reach, capacity and impact.

Based on the research, each organization decided to focus on distinct but complementary strategies for holding farm and foodlands. CRFAIR is collaborating to create a local government trust for land located in the Capital Regional District. FarmFolk CityFolk incubated and stewarded the formalization of the Foodlands Cooperative as a provincial, non-governmental, community-based land trust.

Dialogue with the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty, led to changing “farmland” to “foodlands”, which recognizes the diversity of food harvesting systems, colonial history of agricultural land policies, and further opens a dialogue between and across communities and initiatives around land access and Indigenous land rights.