Agriculture in the City: Breaking New Ground

Agriculture in the City is a free family event to help people who live in the city better understand the vibrant and innovative world of agriculture and how it affects their day-to-day lives.

Come meet the farmers who grow the food you eat, and learn lessons that you can take back to your own home or garden.

  • Explore our demonstration greenhouse and learn how bees and other insects help grow vegetables and reduce the need for pesticides.
  • Mill your own wholegrain flour from Canadian wheat in our Farm to Fork display.

  • Learn how science and research helps make our food safe, healthy and delicious.
  • Celebrate the flavours of BC at our cooking demonstrations.

Metropolis at Metrotown – Grand Court
Burnaby, BC

Friday, April 23 from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm;
Saturday, April 24 from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm and
Sunday, April 25 from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm.

Getting to Metropolis at Metrotown

10 Things Kids Can Do At Agriculture in the City

  1. Hop on a bicycle grinder and mill flour from Canadian soft wheat.
  2. Find out which bugs are farmers’ best friends.
  3. Collect bug cards and wear a bug tattoo.
  4. Learn from Chef Barb how to make Corn and Black Bean Salsa with ingredients from around the world.*
  5. Calculate how far the salsa ingredients travelled to Burnaby.
  6. Milk Delilah the fibreglass cow.
  7. Visit the glass greenhouse and see what grows inside.
  8. Build the Canadian Farming puzzle – it’s bigger than your kitchen table.

  9. Discover new words and strange facts about farming when author Carol Watterson reads from her book Alfalfabet A-Z.*
  10. Visit the Poultry in Motion outdoor exhibit on Saturday, and see chicks, mature birds, and laying hens.  If you’re lucky you might see a chicken lay an egg, but can you tell which came first?

*Check the Activity Schedule for times on the cooking demonstrations and readings.

Be Green like a Farmer

Increasingly consumers base their buying decisions on their desire to support environmental sustainability. Since 2003, farmers across Canada have voluntarily assessed how earth friendly their farms are through a program called the Environmental Farm Plan Program. This initiative encourages producers to adopt beneficial management practices that enhance agricultural sustainability and contribute to a cleaner, healthier environment.

By managing animal grazing areas, reducing nutrient run-off, and incorporating integrated pest management, farmers can limit their impacts on waterways, wildlife and biodiversity.

Here’s how you can reduce nutrient run-off in your own garden. Compost adds important nutrients to our soil; however these same nutrients can fuel algae growth if they enter the water system. Keeping a lid on your compost during the wet season will keep the nutrients in your compost instead of running down storm drains. A soggy compost can also contribute to anaerobic zones that slow the composting process. A simple lid or tarp can also reduce these effects.


In BC, the BC Agricultural Research and Development Corporation (ARDCorp) delivers the Canada-British Columbia Environmental Farm Plan Program on behalf of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and the British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture and Lands (MAL).

For more information go to:

Sustainable Pest Control

It’s a bug eat bug world out there and Agriculture in the City partners, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Institute for Sustainable Horticulture in Langley are using this to benefit farmers and protect the environment. Researchers at AAFC and students at Kwantlen match beneficial insects with pests in order to reduce the amount of pesticides used in agriculture. In North America we have been using “nature” to help control pests since 1882. Using live organisms to control insects, weeds and plant diseases is referred to as “biocontrol” or “biological control”.

As part of the greenhouse installation at Agriculture in the City visitors will have a chance to see the effects of these beneficial bugs first hand. All are commonly found on farms as well as in urban gardens.

See if you can match the list of common pests and beneficial insects with what they eat (answers are below).

1. Flower flies (pictured)                            a) Cabbage loopers

2. Aphids                                                  b) Cabbage

3. Spined soldier bugs                               c) Aphids

4. Cabbage loopers                                   d) Flowers, fruit and vegetables

Answers: 1-c (beneficial),  2-d (pest),  3-a (beneficial),  4-b (pest).

Read more at:

How do you like your wheat? Hard or soft?

When people think of wheat, often their next thought turns to bread; chewy, crusty bread. Bread requires hard wheat, full of protein and long gluten strands that can capture yeasty outputs that make bread to rise. Durum wheat is the hardest of wheat with the most gluten making for elastic noodles and couscous. Cookies, pastry, cakes, and even Irish soda bread however, do best when made with soft wheat which has less gluten making baked goods light and even airy. All purpose flour is a blend of hard and soft wheat.

BC produces about 110,000 tonnes of wheat, 99.9% of which is hard wheat. This is about 0.4% of all wheat grown in Canada.

85 to 90% of the grain crops grown in BC are grown in the Peace River region. Special varieties have been adapted for the soil and temperature conditions there. Wheat is also produced in the North Okanagan, around Vanderhoof, around Creston, and in the Lower Mainland.

At Agriculture in the City you’ll be able to grind your own flour from Canadian soft wheat. Come visit us from April 23rd to 25th in the Grand Court of Metropolis at Metrotown and hop on the bicycle powered flour mill.

In addition to wheat, BC grows other grains and pulses:

– Barley including malt barley and feed barley
– Canola
– Field peas (to be dried)
– Flax
– Oats
– Triticale

Question: What is Triticale?

Answer: Triticale is a hybrid between wheat and rye.

For more information go to:

Robocow saves the day!

Robocow saves the day with best management practices for farmers!


Watch Robocow now!