Tuesday, December 18, 2018 – Kuujjuaq, Nunavik – Makivik Corporation, with the financial assistance of $350,000 from la Société du Plan Nord, has acquired and installed a greenhouse container and a waste oil heating system in Nunavik’s biggest community. The Kuujjuaq Hydroponic Container has been operational since the beginning of December 2018. The aim of this project is to set a precedent in Nunavik by being the first year-round commercial gardening initiative in Nunavik. It will provide access to fresh fruits and vegetables to Kuujjuammiut.
Makivik has great hopes that this first unit will be successful, and we can look at future projects in other Nunavik communities. The first green shoots out of the ground – lettuce, Bok Choy, and various herbs – are healthy and destined to Kuujjuaq dinner tables.
The Kuujjuaq Hydroponic Container was supplied by the Ottawa-based company, Growcer. The hydroponic systems are being operated and managed by our local operating partner, Newviq’vi Dépanneur Inc. Hydroponics is a subset of hydroculture, which is a method of growing plants without soil by using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent. Newviq’vi is in charge of growing the fruits and vegetables, organizing the sale and distribution of the production, as well as offering free vegetable products to local organizations (approximatively 30% of production, depending on the needs of the targeted community organizations such as the Elders’ Home or Daycares).
Makivik Corporation is committed to improving food security in the region. The knowledge and experience from the Kuujjuaq Hydroponic Container will serve to inform future food-related projects across Nunavik and across Inuit Nunangat. What started as an idea brought forward by the Société du Plan Nord with Makivik Corporation has now become a reality. We hope that all Nunavimmiut will soon benefit from this ambitious initiative.
Makivik is the land claims organization mandated to manage the heritage funds of the Inuit of Nunavik provided for under the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement. Makivik’s role includes the administration and investment of these funds and the promotion of economic growth by providing assistance for the creation of Inuit-operated businesses in Nunavik. Makivik promotes the preservation of Inuit culture and language as well as the health, welfare, relief of poverty, and education of Inuit in the communities.