A plan to build a feed mill for a Salmon Arm poultry operation has received accolades from Salmon Arm council.
“This is a good news story,” said Coun. Tim Lavery, commenting on an application from Lakeland Farms to the Agricultural Land Commission to construct an organic feed mill, considered a non-farm use, on property at 6710 50th Ave. SW in the Salmon Valley.
Referring to the application from Mike Schroeder, Lavery said he fully supports it and, “it’s probably more of a personal note, but the Schroeders are young farming families who are trying to do things the correct way… This is a good news story.”
Mayor Alan Harrison echoed Lavery’s comments.
“I have a bit of a personal attachment to this property, a piece of the Reid property, right beside where Mount Ida Hall used to be. I know it very well. I’m really pleased that it will be put to good use.”
A report from the city’s planning department stated that the footprint of the mill with be 334 square metres and would provide feed for an existing poultry operation and future commercial feed production.
“For the mill to be considered a farm use the ALC requires that at least 50% of the raw materials are produced on-farm or at least 50% of the product is used on-farm. An approved Non-Farm Use would allow for raw materials to be imported and the product be sold off-farm,” stated the report.
Kevin Pearson, the city’s director of development services, said the application is required by the ALC because there’s a possibility that more than 50 per cent of the product would come from off-farm.
He said the feed mill would be relatively small in relation to the 65-hectare (160-acre) property.
The report noted that a new chicken-layer barn was constructed in 2018.
The city’s planning report concluded by saying that staff recommend that the application be forwarded to the ALC.
“The proposed feed mill is an opportunity for increasing value-added agricultural production in the Salmon Valley and has the potential to support organic local food security. The demolition of previously unused structures and reclamation of fill areas has minimized the impact on the farm land.”
Council agreed and voted unanimously to support forwarding the application to the land commission.