Agricultural Land Use Inventory

Executive Summary

In the summer of 2016, the BC Ministry of Agriculture and its partners conducted an Agricultural Land Use Inventory (ALUI) in RDCK. The ALUI was funded by RDCK, the Columbia Basin Trust, and Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial territorial initiative.

ALUIs can be used to understand the type and extent of agricultural activities within the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR). The ALUI data quantifies how much land is currently used for agriculture, how much land is unavailable for agriculture, and how much land may have potential for agricultural expansion. The data provides baseline information that can be used to track trends in agricultural land use and to measure changes over time. The data also enables the estimation of agricultural water demand with the use of an irrigation water demand model (agriculture water demand model is currently under development).

To review the full report, please click the link here [PDF - 1.6 MB].

Area of Interest and Methodology

Included in the inventory were all parcels:

  • completely or partially within the ALR, or
  • classified by BC Assessment as having “Farm” status for tax assessment, or
  • containing an active water licence for farming or irrigation purposes, or
  • zoned by local government bylaws to permit agriculture, and greater than 1 acre2 and showing signs of agriculture on aerial photography

The ALR in RDCK consists of 63,086 ha. Of this area:

  • 70% or 44,192 ha met one of the inventory criteria and was included in the survey
  • 26% or 16,544 ha was outside of legally surveyed parcels in Crown land
  • 4% or 2,350 ha was in Indian reserves

The ALUI was conducted using visual interpretation of aerial imagery combined with a drive-by “windshield” survey to capture a snapshot in time of land use and land cover. 


This project was made possible by a partnership between the Regional District of Central Kootenay, the BC Ministry of Agriculture, and the Partnership for Water Sustainability in BC. All partners provided in-kind resources that enabled the success of the Agricultural Land Use Inventory.

We would like to acknowledge the farmers and residents who stopped to talk to the survey crew about farming in the region.

Funding for this project has been provided in part by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the BC Ministry of Agriculture through the Canada-BC Agri-Innovation Program under Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial territorial initiative. The program is delivered by the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC.   

Additional project funding was provided by the Regional District of Central Kootenay and the Columbia Basin Trust.



The content on this page was last updated October 19 2017 at 11:36 AM