PEI

Organic farm in Brookfield, P.E.I. files environmental impact plan

An environmental impact assessment has been filed on a planned expansion of Red Soil Organics in Brookfield, for a proposed 16,800 square-foot building for vegetable washing, grading and packaging, as well as cold storage.

Red Soil Organics experiencing "exponential growth" says shareholder

Red Soil Organics shareholder Eddy Dykerman says product demand is creating the need for expansion at the farm. (Red Soil Organics)

An environmental impact assessment has been filed on a planned expansion of Red Soil Organics in Brookfield, P.E.I.

If approved, it would mean construction of a 16,800 square-foot building for vegetable washing, grading and packaging, as well as cold storage.

Red Soil Organics currently uses part of the building, occupied by its sister company, Brookfield Gardens.

"We have experienced exponential growth in the last four years," said Eddy Dykerman, a Red Soil shareholder involved with both companies. "We started out using the same building as Brookfield Gardens and it has just gotten way too big."

Dykerman said the level of demand for crops such as oats and peas has outstripped their supply.

Crops such as broccoli were completely gone by Christmas of 2015, says Eddy Dykerman. (Red Soil Organics)
"Last year, we were pretty well finished by Christmas because we had sold everything that we grew," he said. "So now we have to grow more and have a bigger storage capacity and basically a faster way to get them off the field in the fall. We have to mechanize some of the grading and stuff to keep up with the demand."

Dykerman said it will likely mean more weeks of work for employees.

The new building is slated to go up next to Brookfield Gardens, and a treatment facility will be part of the project.

The environmental impact assessment has been filed with the Department of Communities, Land and Environment for public comment.

Dykerman said if approved, construction would begin this spring and be complete by the fall.

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