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Sowing Seeds at Okeover


ou can catch newbie Westview resident Brenden Frehlich enjoying Powell River Kings games with his kids, camping with his wife, or feeding millions of tiny oysters phytoplankton in a Quonset hut in Okeover Inlet. That’s where he works, growing oyster seed, for Ahptun, a new partnership between Tla’amin First Nation Economic Development Corporation and Ocean Protein Canada. He’s worked for aquaculture operations all over the coast, but he’s very enthusiastic about Okeover’s potential to do oysters right.

A TINY FOOTPRINT: Oysters have been cultivated in Okeover Inlet for decades, or even millennia. These seeds are grown indoors and transplanted into the ocean.  “I want all the people in the community to see how positive this can be,” said Brenden, mentioning that the plan is Pacific oysters and eventually, geoducks. “The region has been plagued with lack of seed supply, and Okeover has a history of shellfish aquaculture. People already see it as

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24 • Powell River, BC

a part of the economy.” Ahptun plans to employ about 12 people when it’s running at full capacity. The oysters, which start in a hatchery and get moved to the ocean, take about two years to mature. Currently, he’s got 1.5 million seeds in 100 bags of shell.

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Home Grown 2015  

Local food and agriculture. Who's growing food? What food? The stories behind local growers. Plus a map of where food is being grown in the...