First Nations Enter Massive Farm Venture

Thursday, March 26, 2009 at 15:34



A Toronto-based investment firm is committing $27.5 million to launch a “large scale, fully-integrated corporate farming entity” with several Saskatchewan and Alberta First Nations.


One Earth Farms will have operations on First Nations’ farmland across the two provinces, making it the largest operating farm in the country.


Sprott Resources president and CEO Kevin Bambrough says his company intends to build a long-term profitable agricultural business in partnership with the affected First Nations.


Bambrough says it will improve the management and environmental sustainability of the First Nations’ farmland, as well as benefit their peoples through increased revenue and job opportunities.


Management has designed a program to begin farming operations in a “hub and spoke” system designed to plant crops and ranch lands in annual increments, including 50,000 acres in its first year.


One Earth Farms also intends to initiate job training programs for First Nations people.


Former Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations chief Blaine Favel has been named the director of the new entity.


Favel says One Earth Farms has received “enthusiastic support” from First Nations because of the job opportunities it’s promising for bands, as well as its land management practices.