Réseau Cultiver Montréal; the new core of urban agriculture in Greater Montreal
On November 30th, 2018, a major event for urban agriculture in Quebec was held, the founding meeting of the brand new organization “Cultiver Montréal”, whose main mission is to support, encourage and contribute to the development of all forms of agriculture in the Greater Montreal area by: bringing together and coordinating local actors; sharing information and resources; promoting and raising awareness; and political advocacy.
Alternatives has been leading this initiative since 2010 as a project within their organisation. We owe them thanks and recognition for the great work in developing our industry and mobilizing the actors to raise the profile of Urban Agriculture in our fair city. Thanks in large part to this work, Montreal is now considered a global leader in Urban Agriculture.
Composed of organizations representing various sectors of urban agriculture from commercial producers, to well as social organizations involved in urban agriculture in Montreal, the Réseau Cultiver Montréal is an inclusive and promising project that will definitely inspire while highlighting local initiatives.
Considering that the urban agriculture community is mature enough to be able to take part in the major decisions being made at the City of Montreal, and in other important bodies, and considering that the various organizations and companies want the voice of all urban agriculture actors to be heard, and not just that of a few major players, it was decided to incorporate Cultiver Montréal as a non-profit organization.
“This is an important and significant moment for the community today! Nearly 70 people representing some 45 organizations active in urban agriculture gathered for truly interesting and passionate discussions on the future of agriculture in Montreal. I am sincerely excited for the future and very happy to have been involved from the beginning in the creation process of this organization, which will bring together the various initiatives already present on the territory in addition to pooling our respective knowledge and expertise and thus benefit the entire community! »
mentions Tereska Gesing, co-founder and owner of Urban Seedling.
The main objectives of Réseau Cultiver Montréal are :
- Support the coordination of areas for cooperation, consultation and regional and local networking;
- Identify themes or issues to be addressed, particularly based on current strategic planning, by identifying development opportunities that meet the needs and challenges of Cultiver Montréal’s members;
- Bring regional priorities to various public and private bodies in order to:
- Share ongoing initiatives, needs and best practices;
- Promote and support policies that promote the sustainable and equitable development of Montreal agriculture in accordance with a healthy and favourable environment and the proper development of living ecosystems;
- Invite government representatives, companies, researchers or others as appropriate and appropriate to the topic being discussed to the committees.
- Advocacy for the inclusion of urban agriculture to all government and non-governmental bodies;
- Act as an incubator for structuring regional initiatives and as a regional financial lever;
- Serve as a unifying tool and actively collaborate in the deployment of structuring regional actions and projects;
- Support collaboration between diverse communities in urban and peri-urban agriculture; and gender and ethnic diversity. To promote the inclusion of all and support the recognition of indigenous territories;
- Organize events as tools for common visibility in order to promote actions and actors at the network level (ex: Cultiver Montréal fairs);
- Raise awareness of agricultural issues among Montrealers;
- Organize or offer technical training to friends and members.
The next steps will be to take charge of the organization of the Montreal Seed Saturday weekend, the Rendez-vous des agricultures montréalaises, and the Cultiver Montréal Fairs. The Réseau Cultiver Montréal is also deepening its collaboration with regional bodies such as the Conseil-SAM, MAPAQ, UPA and Ville de Montréal to ensure that it can properly represent its members.
A special thanks to: Michel Lambert et Gaëlle Janvier d’Alternatives, Claudia Atomei d’AU/LAB, Marie-Anne Viau de Santropol Roulant, Sara Maranda-Gauvin de On Sème, Guillaume Vallée-Rémillard de GRAME, Tereska Gesing de Semis urbains et Lauren Pochereva de Ça Pousse! formed a sub-committee to synthesize the last two and a half years of consultations during the Rendez-vous to extract the mission and objectives desired by the community for this type of initiative, and to draft general regulations and values statements.
Organization involved : Alternatives, AU/LAB, Santropol Roulant, On Sème, GRAME, Semis urbains, Ça Pousse!, PAUSE, Sentier Urbain, Le Dépôt, MicroHabitat, Écopap, Conseil-SAM, Les Fleurons du Québec, Y’a Quelqu’un l’aut’bord du mur, Insecto, Cégep de Victoriaville demain, Coopérative Agricole Urbaine Responsable, Miel Montréal, Potager africain du Québec, Projet Harmonie, Union des Producteurs Agricoles Outaouais-Laurentides, Paysage gourmand, Jardin botanique de Montréal, Arrondissement Sud-Ouest, Arrondissement Verdun, City Farm School, Société écocitoyenne de Montréal, Rucher Reine Noire, FIHOQ, Grand Potager, Alvéole, Carrefour alimentaire Centre-Sud, Ordre des Agronomes du Québec, Société environnemental de Côte-des-Neiges, Projet Montréal Verdun, Projet Montréal MHM, Espace pour la vie, Botaphyte, Ville en Vert, Re-set Tech, La ferme Pousse-menu, Fédération des sociétés d’horticulture et d’écologie du Québec, Urban Worms Montréal, Les jardins Carya, Regroupement des éco-quartiers, VertCité, Seedtheglobe, Lufa farms, Coopérative Abondance Urbaine Solidaire.