The Agriculture Master Plan is a made-in Strathcona County plan that fits the needs of our unique community. The plan addresses two questions: what is the future of agriculture in Strathcona County? And what strategies and policies are required to enable this future to be realized? It was awarded the 2016 Award for Planning Excellence by the Canadian Institute of Planners.
The Implementation Strategy outlines how Strathcona County intends to explore the recommendations in the Agriculture Master Plan. Implementation of the Agriculture Master Plan will involve evaluation of six key strategy areas.
Agriculture and food sector development
Agriculture and Food Sector Development is the next strategy being developed to support the Agriculture Master Plan. This strategy area is about attracting new diverse enterprises, expansion of supply chains, and improving local investment readiness to encourage and support agriculture and food endeavours within the County.
The strategy is focussed on:
- Identifying economic opportunities, largely for agriculture and food production and processing, resulting in products with added value
- Identifying potentially unique companies with unique products
- Including new and improved primary production
For more information, visit the Agriculture and Food Sector Development page.
Agri-tourism is one of the sectors currently being explored as Strathcona County develops a tourism product development plan.
Tourism has potential to attract and grow our primary sectors. It can enhance quality of life by creating a sense of place, which would support major employers in the area with talent attraction. It can also support the retail community and cultivate economic diversification.
Agri-tourism refers to the opportunity to discover agriculture through experiential education.
Examples of topics that may be explored include:
- connecting with current agri-tourism operators
- open market opportunities
The Urban Agriculture Strategy was approved in 2016.
Our vision is that urban agriculture is easily accessed and seen in Strathcona County; it contributes to creating a healthy, liveable community by helping to grow food, relationships, and economy in our community.
For more information on the strategies seven focus areas visit the Urban Agriculture Strategy page.
Land use and development
Land use outlines what kinds of activities can take place on different land types within the County. Land use and development is regulated by the municipality through a number of plans and policy documents, including the Municipal Development Plan, Area Structure Plans and the Land Use Bylaw. These documents will be reviewed and the suitability of different forms of agriculture in different areas will be evaluated.
The update to the Municipal Development Plan included the review and evaluation of many land use and development potential actions.
For more information, visit the Municipal Development Plan Update page.
Governance, in regards to the Agriculture Master Plan, means that Strathcona County as an organization has the resources, capability and competencies to address and support agriculture in our community. It encompasses our ability to work cooperatively with both urban and rural residents and stakeholders, and strive for service excellence by understanding the needs of residents and activities involved in agriculture.
Examples of topics that may be explored include:
- creating innovation in our communications and public relations programs in agriculture
- review of the County’s Strategic Plan to be sure that agriculture is visible in our goals
- evaluating the County’s resources for Agriculture Master Plan strategy implementation
Agriculture Master Plan review
Estimated start date: TBD
Changes in agriculture are continuous and considerable, requiring a dynamic and proactive approach in response to emerging trends and opportunities. It is important that agriculture, in both urban and rural environments, is examined and that market opportunities are studied frequently to ensure successful enterprises are being supported and encouraged.
Key indicators will be developed through all of the strategies. These indicators will be summarized and evaluated in order to gauge our success and opportunities for improvement.
Regional Agriculture Master Plan
The Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board (EMRB) has developed a critical piece of the region's 2044 Growth Plan. The Regional Agriculture Master Plan (RAMP), will help our region's counties, towns and cities effectively plan for the future of agriculture and the agricultural sector.
Agriculture has important historical, cultural, and economic roots in Strathcona County and the region, and is foundational to the region’s future. The RAMP is intended to provide policy direction to help manage land use for the future of the agriculture sector, ensure food security, attract investment and talent, create jobs, and build on our history to create even more economic potential for this Region with the growth of the agri-foods industry.
Strathcona County’s Agriculture Master Plan puts specific emphasis toward ensuring ongoing development of a land use framework supporting the long-term success of agriculture. Regional Agriculture Master Plan will help to inform this work on a regional level as well as in our own community.
EMRB consists of an elected official from each of the thirteen largest municipalities in the Edmonton Region, including Strathcona County.