Editors' Blog

Green Living editors dish on the latest trends and happenings in sustainability.

Being green used to mean just purchasing organic or local as much as possible. However as our green knowledge evolves, we find ourselves looking deeper into the practices of our organic farmers. Terms such as “

biodynamic

farming” and “LEED certified” greenhouses are becoming part of our vernacular and we look to our local farmers to go beyond our “organic” expectations.

I was excited to learn about the Bakerview Dairy in Abbotsford, BC. Why? It is the first Canadian Eco-Dairy. The farm is still being constructed and will open to the public around June of this year. It will include such eco initiatives as milking machines that use less water and energy than traditional machines. The cows will also have free range, coming in and out of their barn as they chose and even choosing when they wish to be milked.

The farm also boasts a few other "green" innovations, including Canada's first on-farm anaerobic digester. I was not sure what this was either, don’t worry. It is a machine that takes the cow's manure, heats it, converts it to gas and uses the energy to power lights and heat. The machine, funded in part through government grants, will be installed by July.
Rainwater is also collected from one of the barn's roofs for use on the farm, plus a natural ventilation system keeps the air fresh.

Once all systems are up and running in June, the farm looks to open up a farmers’ market where their milk and cheese will be sold alongside other traditional market fare. There is opportunity for tours of the facility, and you will even be able to watch the cows being milked. The goal of the property is to showcase green innovations, says their marketing manager Tanya Curtis.

Interesting, what are your thoughts on Canada’s first Eco-Dairy?