IVCA serves 10 growers – 5 on Vancouver Island and 5 on the lower mainland. Of those 10 growers, 6 grow regulated produce which is marketed through IVCA. All 10 grow non-regulated products as well. IVCA’s growers annually employ 490 people.
Growth Potential for IVCA
Since 2013, IVCA’s focus has been to see growth in the number of growers it is marketing for, the number of clients it is marketing to, and to see sales revenue and tonnage increase – thereby achieving the goals of its members and providing an increased selection of fresh BC products available year round – without gaps. While obviously this is not possible with many products, there are several which IVCA currently markets for up to 10 months of the year and we are working with our growers to achieve year-round supply for our clients.
Michell’s Farm, located in Saanichton, BC is a sixth-generation family-owned and operated farm that has been operating on the Saanich Peninsula for over 150 years. They grow over 50 varieties of fruits and vegetables, as well as hay, grain and pasture-raised beef. Since it was originally established in the 1880’s, Michell’s Farm has grown from a 100 acre farm to its current 500+ acres, which produces over four thousand tonnes of produce annually. Michells Farm annually employs 77 people.
Owned by the Dheenshaw family for over 30 years, Gobind Farm specializes in seasonal fresh-picked berries. Located on 100 Acres on the Saanich Peninsula, Gobind Farms is a top producer of seasonal berries on Vancouver Island -Strawberries, Blackberries, Raspberries, Boysenberries, Tayberries, Loganberries and Blueberries. Gobind Farms also grows squash, pumpkins, kale, leeks and garlic. Gobind Farms annually employs 50 people.
In 1985, Ray and Gordon Galey moved the original 50 acre farm from Cordova Bay to the beautiful Blenkinsop Valley on Vancouver Island. The farm is now over 150 acres. In 2000, Galey Farms expanded its operation to include agri-tourism – to educate the public on how their food is grown and why farming is important to a community. Galey Farms grows potatoes, carrots, squash, pumpkins and strawberries. Galey Farms annually employs 35 people.
Hothi Farms / Three Star Farms
In 1981, Santokh Hothi and his family immigrated to Canada. In May 1999 Santolk incorporated his own farm. Today Hothi Farms / Three Star Farms plants over 550 acres of vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, cabbage, beans, peas, pumpkins, beets, and squash. Similar to Santokh, his two children Sukhjeaven and Amanda have a love of farming. Today Sukhjeaven has incorporated his own company – Three Star Farms where he farms over 50 acres of potatoes. Hothi Farms joined the IVCA in 2010. Between the two farms they annually employ 30 people.
John Yue Farms
John Yue Farms Ltd., located in Cloverdale, BC, was started by John and Lin You Yue in 1968. The original farm size was 44 acres and in the next 20 years it expanded to over 100 acres. Primary vegetables grown are head lettuce, green / red leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, squash, twain cabbage, leeks, fennel and pumpkins. James Yue joined the IVCA in 2014. John Yue Farms annually employs 13 people.
Opinder Bhatti came to Canada from India in 1991, with no farming background. In 1997, he began his farming operation with just 5 acres of land. Today Bhatti Farms is the largest sweet corn producer in the Fraser Valley, farming 480 acres. Bhatti Farms produces over 5 million ears of corn each year which are sold from Vancouver to Alberta. Bhatti Farms also grows peas, green beans, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts. Bhatti Farms annually employs 40 people.