Norm Letnick at Recline Ridge Winery with Graydon Ratzlaff.
Norm Letnick has rested up from his 6,500 km trip around BC and is ready to apply what he learned this past April. His first stop was 100 Mile house in the Cariboo, with his last stop being Parksville on Vancouver Island.
“This is my second time as Ag Minister,” said Letnick. "I wanted to reconnect with as many people as possible. Around the province the biggest complaint was invasive species, weeds, and wildlife damaging crops. On the tree fruit side, the top priorities are still the replant program - replanting from less marketable varieties of apples to ones that are more marketable.”
Letnick estimates he met over 300 people on this trip. “I think people are more optimistic this time around. Prices are good, wineries are doing well and people have had an opportunity to build up their businesses. I had some great conversations with young farmers in many parts of the province that want to take over the family farm. They are working through succession planning with their parents, which can be a trying process. They have the right attitude. I also had an opportunity to tour the University of the Fraser Valley Ag Centre and it’s going to help a lot in training young farmers as they get into the industry.”