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Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Quebec government is investing $5 million over three years to encourage sustainable greenhouse gardens in Nunavik, according to a CBC report. The pilot project aims to produce affordable vegetables for Quebec's Inuit communities for most of the year.

The community of Kuujjuaq already has two community greenhouses where local participants have been growing food for themselves and their neighbours for several years. The Société du Plan Nord, the agency charged with planning sustainable development in Northern Quebec, is spearheading the initiative in the hope that it will lead to commercial vegetable production to feed residents in Nunavik's far-flung villages.

The plan is to use garbage, now burned in the open air, as a source of heat for the greenhouses by incinerating it at a thermal waste treatment station.

Fresh produce must now be flown in, driving up prices and limiting the variety and availability of fruits and vegetables. If the pilot project is successful, it could extend the growing season to eight months of the year.

 The province of Quebec has also earmarked a further $3 million over five years to about a dozen new non-profit and communal greenhouses in any territory touched by Quebec's northern plan, including Nunavik, the James Bay territory and the Lower North Shore.

Image: Kuujjuaq greenhouse/Facebook

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