Gardens get growing across the Dehcho Region

FORT SIMPSON (May 28, 2013) – Encouraged by the thoughts of fresh and nutritious produce, creating a vibrant neighbourhood space and potential savings on grocery bills, residents are working together on building community gardens across the Dehcho, thanks in part to support from the Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment (ITI).

Plans are underway to create community gardens – the first in several years – in both Jean Marie River and Fort Liard. In addition, Wrigley’s garden location will be changed to ensure an optimum growing season with varied produce. Nahanni Butte’s community garden will be restarted this summer after the original garden was washed out during last year’s flooding.

“With average food costs in the NWT almost the highest in Canada, sustainable agricultural initiatives play a key role in lowering the cost of living across the territory and diversifying our economy,” said Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment David Ramsay. “Creating these gardens really is a group effort, and it is great to see everyone work together to create a shared space that the entire community can benefit from.”

Fort Simpson already has three established community gardens and ITI recently hired an agricultural specialist to provide advice and technical assistance to residents to help ensure optimum and healthy produce yields this season.

ITI Regional Superintendent for the Dehcho Mike Mageean recently gave a presentation to the Fort Simpson Garden Society, where he answered questions on how ITI can provide support and also gave an overview of the Growing Forward 2 program, which will provide up to $1.2 million per year for the NWT agriculture sector over the next five years – a funding increase of almost $500,000 per year.

The GNWT’s investment in agriculture further supports the 17th Legislative Assembly’s priority to support small business and the traditional economy in the interest of strengthening and diversifying the NWT economy.

For more information, please contact:

Alayna Ward
Manager, Public Affairs and Communications
Industry, Tourism and Investment
Government of the Northwest Territories
Tel: (867) 920-8696


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