Agriculture is both our legacy and our future

Our Regional Agriculture Master Plan (RAMP) will provide our Region with policies to effectively manage land use for the future of agriculture and the agriculture sector.

Agriculture is both our legacy and our future

Our Regional Agriculture Master Plan (RAMP) will provide our Region with policies to effectively manage land use for the future of agriculture and the agriculture sector.

Why a plan for agriculture?

Now, for the first time, there is an opportunity to make agriculture the sole focus of a planning process at a regional level, and to plan for agriculture as opposed to planning around it.

Agriculture has a strong and proud history in this Region, with some of the most productive soils in the province. Regional growth includes a healthy and expanding agricultural sector which depends on conserving a supply of prime agricultural land.

The RAMP is focused on land planning and creating certainty among farmers, producers and landowners who rely on land to support the production of food, fiber and fuel.

The 13 municipalities in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region recognize that agriculture and the agriculture sector is critical to our economic resilience, prosperity, and growth and requires support to be sustainable. Losing agricultural lands to development and other non-agriculture uses impacts the future of farming and erodes the economic potential of the sector.

Through RAMP, the EMRB aims to:

1. Identify and conserve an adequate supply of prime agricultural lands to provide a secure local food source for future generations.
2. Minimize the fragmentation and conversion of prime agricultural lands for non-agricultural uses.
3. Promote diversification and value-added agriculture production and plan infrastructure to support the agricultural sector and regional food system.

RAMP is the first‐ever regional plan for agriculture that will provide our member municipalities with policy direction to effectively plan for and manage land use for the future of agriculture and the agriculture sector.

Why a plan for agriculture?

Now, for the first time, there is an opportunity to make agriculture the sole focus of a planning process at a regional level, and to plan for agriculture as opposed to planning around it.

Agriculture has a strong and proud history in this Region, with some of the most productive soils in the province. Regional growth includes a healthy and expanding agricultural sector which depends on conserving a supply of prime agricultural land.

The RAMP is focused on land planning and creating certainty among farmers, producers and landowners who rely on land to support the production of food, fiber and fuel.

The 13 municipalities in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region recognize that agriculture and the agriculture sector is critical to our economic resilience, prosperity, and growth and requires support to be sustainable. Losing agricultural lands to development and other non-agriculture uses impacts the future of farming and erodes the economic potential of the sector.

Through RAMP, the EMRB aims to:

1. Identify and conserve an adequate supply of prime agricultural lands to provide a secure local food source for future generations.
2. Minimize the fragmentation and conversion of prime agricultural lands for non-agricultural uses.
3. Promote diversification and value-added agriculture production and plan infrastructure to support the agricultural sector and regional food system.

RAMP is the first‐ever regional plan for agriculture that will provide our member municipalities with policy direction to effectively plan for and manage land use for the future of agriculture and the agriculture sector.

Supporting the economic potential of the agriculture and agri-foods sectors.

As the second largest sector in the province after oil & gas, the agricultural sector is well positioned to contribute to our regional and provincial goals of economic diversification, growing GDP, creating jobs, and attracting investment.

While land is a critical and essential commodity, it is not enough to sustain this Region nor create exponential economic growth. We need to think beyond food production when we look at what land represents. We need to be thinking differently about the future and the unlimited potential for the sector to supply food, fibre and fuel globally.

Meet Our RAMP Task Force:

The EMRB has appointed a seven-member Task Force to oversee the development of the Regional Agriculture Master Plan.

The Task Force includes an elected official from each of the four member counties, as well as two cities and one town.

RAMP is the first-ever regional plan for agriculture undertaken by the EMRB, identified in Re-imagine. Plan. Build, the 2017 Edmonton Metro Region Growth Plan.

Rod Shaigec

“I believe this is a once in a lifetime opportunity that should not be ignored. Our timing couldn’t be better. We need to seize this opportunity through RAMP to elevate and recognize the full potential of the agriculture and the agri-foods industry sector to contribute to the economic resilience and of this Region. By leveraging our strengths in natural capital with applied knowledge, technology, and innovation we can transform this Region, like the discovery of oil did on February 13th, 1947.”

RAMP Task Force Chair,

Mayor Rod Shaigec,
Parkland County

Tanni Doblanko

“Agriculture and farming have always been important to who I am, but more importantly, to you our residents. Agriculture and our rich farmland is what drew people to our Region, and now, the future that the agricultural industry can offer us is in our hands. RAMP is providing a venue to hear from you, our residents, about what you believe are the necessary conditions to realize agriculture’s true potential in the Region.”

Interim RAMP Task Force Chair,

Mayor Tanni Doblanko,
Leduc County

Michael Walters

“Economic potential is huge. With that incentive as direction, through RAMP we can determine how much land we need to preserve and then build the legislative tools to protect it.”

RAMP Task Force Vice Chair,

Councillor Michael Walters,
City of Edmonton

Kathy Barnhart

RAMP Task Force member,

Councillor Kathy Barnhart,
City of Beaumont

Alanna Hnatiw

Vice Chair EMRB, RAMP Task Force member

Mayor Alanna Hnatiw,
Sturgeon County

Paul Smith

RAMP Task Force member,

Councillor Paul Smith,
Strathcona County

Barry Turner

RAMP Task Force member,

Mayor Barry Turner,
Town of Morinville

For more information and background to RAMP…

The EMRB initiated the work on RAMP in the spring of 2018.

To date, the Board has completed research and studies of the state of agriculture in the Region and opportunities for growth, as well as explored potential policy tools to manage land in the Region that will enhance agricultural activities and communities.

For more information, RAMP meeting dates, and background documents, please visit: www.emrb.ca/ramp

Want to Learn More About RAMP?