Wanted: Agri-entrepreneurs for Barriere greenhouse

Having space in a year round greenhouse may allow area businesses to grow year round

Barriere’s Greenhouse Think Tank Committee is exploring the benefits and feasibility of forming an agri-business-based co-op as a potential revenue stream for the Solar Aquatics System and Ecology Centre behind the Barriere Fire Hall. Of the 3,000 sq. ft. greenhouse structure, only half will contain the first eight solar tanks that will be treating the wastewater. It is the District of Barriere’s plan to grow pond plants of various varieties in these tanks, the majority of which will be marketable. The other 1500 square feet will be open space for the foreseeable future.

The Think Tank committee was given a mandate to find and focus on revenue-generating ideas for the greenhouse, and attached ecology centre, with the main objective being to lower the ongoing operating costs of the facility making it more affordable for those connected to it.

As a result of committee discussions and reporting out to council, it has been agreed that the concept of creating a cooperative venture with a number of individuals and organizations may have multi-faceted benefits and should be investigated further.

The District of Barriere as the owner of the facility, the Thompson Nicola Regional District, Thompson Rivers University, and School District #73 have already expressed an interest in being involved in some way with this building.

Now the district is looking for individuals out there who may already have a small agri-commercial business that is seasonal in nature.

Having space in a year round greenhouse may allow these businesses to grow to year round. For those who are interested in becoming an “agri-entrepreneur” but don’t have the greenhouse facility to make it a reality, a part of the space could be used to incubate your new business.  If you are going to be connected to the system, or are simply looking for something to volunteer for that involves a greenhouse. This co-op could include you.

If this concept piques your interest, you are invited on Friday, Apr. 15, noon – 1 p.m., or Tuesday, Apr. 19, 5 – 6 p.m., at the Ridge, 4936 Barriere Town Road, to join the discussion. District CAO Colleen Hannigan says if you would like more information she can be contacted by email at: channigan@barriere.ca.  “Let’s talk!” says Hannigan.