The agriculture sector has a lot going for it - creating more value added opportunities is the target.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

September 23rd, 2019



The Halton Agricultural Advisory Committee celebrated their 40th year of advising the Halton municipalities on the state of the farm business and showing the politicians where attention was needed.

They tied the 40th anniversary into a Farm Tour; an occasion when a bus travels around the Region visiting different farming and agricultural operations.

This year it was a visit to Notre Dame Catholic high school where there was a lecture on why Catholic schools were better schools. The real reason for the visit was to look at the agricultural robotic gizmo the students put together. It automatically plants the seeds, waters the plants and will pick the weeds as well.
Notre Dame garden

It is a prototype but it works. Can it be commercialized? That’s something the school would really like an opportunity to prove.

Horses at windows

The horses wanted to know who all these strange people were – taking pictures but not giving them any treats. The several barns on the property have a total of 240 stalls with more on the way; two exercise tracks and everything else a horse might need to rest and get back into shape. The vast majority of the horses are Standard Bred with many racing at the nearby Woodbine Mohawk Racetrack.

Next on the tour was a visit to the First Line Training Centre in Halton Hills where standard bred horses are trained and get sent to to nurse any injuries. The place has 240 stalls with more coming on line in a couple of months.

There are dozens of paddocks, an automatic walking ring and a pool where horses can be exercised without have to carry the weight of their bodies.

Horse swimming

The handlers put a rope around the horses tail to prevent it from going forward – the animal then treads water to exercise all four legs with out having to bear the weight of their bodies.

Horse entering pool

A horse being led into the pool for some exercise.

Standard Bred racing is a big business in rural Halton,  – the Woodbine Mohawk Racetrack is now operational year round.

The last stop of the way was at the Wheelbarrow Apple orchard where there are 10 acres of apple trees with at least two of the finest apple varieties grown in the province.

Apple Farm

Ten acres with more than a dozen apple varieties ready for the public to pick on a ‘pick your own’ farm.

Much more on this when we return with an in-depth look at farming in the Region.

Dinner was served at the Gambrel Barn in Country Heritage Park on Tremaine Rd. The meal gave the word “rubber chick dinners” a whole new meaning. The main meal and the Crème Brule dessert were something to write home about.

The downside was the handing out of service plaques: anyone still alive who served on a HAAC Board or committee got a certificate with their picture taken.

There was a solid speech from Senator Black on the work a Senate committee had done on the state of agriculture and where the growth opportunities are.

The Gazette will come back to just what agriculture means for Halton Region and where the opportunities for growth exist.

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