BRITISH COLUMBIA: AN AUTHENTIC ABORIGINAL EXPERIENCE
Mar 22, 2014
On The Mighty Yellowhead
Don't you just love the name Neepawa, with its lilting, musical sound? Say it softly, with a smile and give thanks, because in the Cree language, Neepawa means "abundance" or "place of plenty." Blessed with such a name, this delightful Manitoba community can't help but prosper. Continued
On British Columbi's Discovery Coast
First Nations Longhouse
OSOYOOS FIRST NATION NK'MIP VINEYARDS
"This is an excellent example of the Government of Canada's commitment to working in partnership with Aboriginal people and northerners to improve their quality of life," said Minister Nault. "Canada's economic and social well-being benefits from strong, self-sufficient Aboriginal and northern people and communities."
Chief Clarence Louie said, "First Nations must focus on economic development and we appreciate that the Government of Canada is demonstrating progress in meeting their obligation to support First Nations in developing their economies. The success of our people is directly tied to how our people participate in the economies of this area."
This funding will assist the OIBDC and its partners in opening Nk'Mip Cellars, the first Aboriginally-owned winery in Canada. Nk'Mip Cellars will produce 25,000 cases of Vintners Quality Alliance (VQA) red, white and ice wines annually. The OIBDC is partnering on this project with a major Canadian winery. The 25,000 cases of VQA wine Nk'Mip expects to supply to the marketplace by 2006, is estimated at 6% of the total VQA production in British Columbia.
Funding announced today will also be put toward the improvement of existing vineyards and expansion of additional vineyards to support the winery. There will be 20-25 acres of organically grown grapes planted at the winery site. While the market stream for these grapes is identified as Nk'Mip Cellars, the grapes would be marketable to any premium wine producer in British Columbia.
This funding will also be used to develop the Osoyoos Band Desert and Heritage Interpretive Centre initiative. The Interpretive Centre will preserve up to 1,000 acres of the remaining tracts of desert lands left in Canada. The Centre could provide for First Nation stewardship of the lands, environmental education for visitors, and a program to restore habitat and reintroduce species at risk onto the lands. The OIBDC expects the Interpretive Centre to draw over 80,000 visitors per year, injecting $1.5-million into the local economy, while creating local jobs.
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