Government of Canada Supports NWT Greenhouse Feasibility Studies

News Release

Funding northern agriculture sector for long-term economic diversification and food security

May 12, 2016 – Yellowknife, NWT – Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor)

Member of Parliament Michael McLeod, on behalf of Minister Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for CanNor, today announced an investment of $102,750 in research funding to Aurora College to assess the feasibility of establishing commercial greenhouses in remote communities of the Northwest Territories.

This research will focus on two communities, Norman Wells and Inuvik, NWT.  At the completion of the project, user-friendly templates will have been created. The long term intent is to grow the local agriculture sector and diversify the economy in communities across the NWT. These templates will be shared with community partners, organizations and local governments to encourage the development of northern greenhouses throughout the territory.

A more robust NWT agriculture sector could also help address long-standing food security issues in the North by investing in innovative ways to reduce food costs and by providing local employment opportunities.

Quick facts

  • CanNor is investing $102,750 in this project. The Government of Northwest Territories is contributing $50,000, with Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada an additional $25,000, and Aurora College $27,750.
  • This investment aims to support local economic diversification and could displace a portion of imported produce, valued at $17 million annually.


"By investing in research to find innovative ways to bring affordable food costs to Northerners, the Government of Canada is helping to grow and diversify the local economy."

The Honourable Navdeep Bains,
Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, and the Minister responsible for CanNor

"By supporting the greenhouse feasibility studies, the Government of Canada is contributing to the diversification of the Northern economy and providing small communities a range of job opportunities in horticulture, agriculture, and food processing and distribution."

Michael McLeod,
Member of Parliament, Northwest Territories

"This initiative is a promising development both for local fresh food availability, and working to develop a more vibrant, diverse economy for our territory. The Government of the Northwest Territories is proud to have invested in this initiative, and will continue to pursue strategic investments in agriculture for the economic and social betterment of the Northwest Territories."

The Honourable Robert R. McLeod,
Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment

"Food insecurity and the high price of fresh produce are an issue in many of our communities. ‎It is important to examine ways to increase access to and affordability of healthy foods in the North."

Jane Arychuk,
President Aurora College


Office of the Honourable Navdeep Bains

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency
Rebecca McDonald
Communications Advisor, Northwest Territories Region

Aurora College
Jayne Murray
Manager, Communications & College Relations

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