Small Business Week Profile - Salish Soils

Small Business Week Profile - Salish Soils

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Friday, October 24, 2014 - 10:00am

CONTENT: Article

Small Business Week Profile - Salish Soils

When Sechelt First Nation member Aaron Joe started his composting facility, Salish Soils, his aim was to turn waste into a viable and valuable product while using entrepreneurship to move his community toward a model of self-reliance. Four years later, his small business has expanded from an initial pilot program leveraging the waste stream from Grieg Seafood into a booming and successful composting and waste processing system. The high-quality, premium landscaping products that Mr. Joe and his team of seven produce are used by commercial landscapers, yard and garden stores, and homeowners throughout the Sunshine Coast and Vancouver’s North Shore. The material produced by Salish Soils meets the highest organic standards and the company diverts 100,000 kg of waste that would otherwise end up in local landfills each year.

“I was looking at alternatives that would be beneficial to the whole community and not just First Nations,” said Mr. Joe in describing his inspiration to start Salish Soils. The company looks to create sustainability through its work and has expanded to green and construction waste recycling. From the original pilot with Grieg, Salish Soils has grown to also work with West Coast Fishculture. About the aquaculture industry, Mr. Joe said, “We’ve been able to achieve a win-win partnership with the aquaculture industry. We work together with integrity and I found it’s been a very good experience for us as First Nations business people to walk in parallel with the aquaculture industry.”

Members of the BC Salmon Farmers Association (BCSFA) are currently partnering with coastal First Nations on 17 economic and social partnerships and are working toward many more. BCSFA will be holding its 2015 AGM in Tofino B.C. after accepting an invitation from the Hereditary Chiefs of the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation.  The AGM will mark the first time B.C.’s salmon farmers have been collectively invited into the traditional territory of a coastal First Nation.


About the BCSFA
Farm-raised salmon is B.C.’s highest-valued agricultural export with almost $300-million in value exported each year. Salmon farming in B.C. provides 6,000 direct and indirect jobs while contributing over $800-million annually to the provincial economy. The BCSFA represents the province’s vibrant salmon farming industry through its members – salmon farm companies and the businesses that proudly provide services and supplies to B.C.’s salmon farmers.

For more information visit

For more information:
Jeremy Dunn
BC Salmon Farmers Association