Save The Date “Cultivating Farms, Farmers, and Food Security”

Food Security is a complex issue that can be addressed from both a community and individual perspective. Individual or household food insecurity is only one part of the larger context which includes the economic, social and food systems, food policies, food culture, and the engagement of community in shaping its context.

On November 25 and 26, the Mount Waddington Community Food Initiative has invited Arzeena Hamir to facilitate two conversations with us.

Registration and Venue Details will be available shortly!

The first conversation will look at food security through the lens of the local farmer/grower/market vendor. The second conversation will focus on supporting the local food economy through our existing systems of local government and our current infrastructure.

On the evening of November 25th our conversation will focus on identifying and understanding the needs of local farmers, growers, and market vendors. We will also talk about Cooperation vs Competition from a farmer perspective, which may be the way forward for the small, diverse and developing farms in our region. Arzeena, as you will read in her bio below, runs a certified organic farm with her husband in the Comox Valley.

This meeting is open to the public with special invitation to;

Potential and Existing Farmers, Growers, Market Vendors, and Youth

On the morning of November 26th our conversation will focus on “Cultivating farms, farmers and food security”. Here we will dig into the role of farmers in a diversified economy, the challenge of attracting and retaining farmers into the region, and increasing understanding, as well as support, for the small and diverse farmer. Arzeena will give examples of how different communities that she has worked with have addressed the issue of encouraging farms and farmers to take root.

This meeting is open to the public with special invitation to a diverse range of stakeholders including;

Regional and Municipal Government Officials, First Nations Leaders and Community Representatives, Farming/Food Industry representatives, Non-Profit Sector, Food Project Coordinators, Recreation and Parks, Health Care Representatives and Advocates, Economic Development/Chamber of Commerce, University and College, Researchers,

Speaker Bio: 

arzeena photo

Arzeena Hamir is an Professional Agrologist who specializes in organic food production. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Crop Science from the University of Guelph and her Master’s degree in Sustainable Agriculture from the University of London, England. Arzeena worked abroad for many years as a CUSO volunteer in Thailand and as a researcher in Jamaica, India, and Bangladesh.

She was the staff agrologist for West Coast Seeds in the late ’90s and ran her own seed company, Terra Viva Organics. From 2008-2012 Arzeena was the Coordinator of the Richmond Food Security Society where she oversaw a number of community projects which included a proposal to the City of Richmond to declare itself a GMO-free Zone. In 2010, in conjunction with Kwantlen University, Arzeena helped to launch the Richmond Farm School.

She currently sits on the boards of the Certified Organic Association of BC and the BC Investment Agriculture Foundation. She and her husband run Amara Farm, a 25 acre certified organic farm, in Courtenay, BC. You can read more about Amara Farm at

For more information on these upcoming conversations and the Mount Waddington Community Foods Initiative contact:

Leslie Dyck  (talk/text) 250-230-1879, email:


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