Small Scale Sustainable Farming

Learn the main theories, concepts and practices of small-scale mixed farming. You’ll explore greenhouse propagation, livestock, farm equipment operation, sustainability, along with business management and marketing skills.


 This program is currently not available to international applicants.
Where: Comox Valley
Starts: April
Length: 20 weeks

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Our Small-Scale Sustainable Farming program provides participants with the skills they need to secure employment in the agricultural industry or start their own agricultural enterprises.

Bob Haugen, NIC Continuing Education manager, contract and training services

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  • SSF-021 Greenhouse Propagation and Production
  • SSF-025 Mixed Livestock Production
  • SSF-020 Market Garden Fundamentals
  • SSF-026 Sustainability & Climate Change
  • SSF-027 Agricultural Equipment Operation
  • SSF-013 Business Plan Preparation
  • TFS-010 FoodSafe Level I *
  • WSF-019 Orientation to WHMIS Online *
  • MVO-071 Transport of Dangerous Goods - Online *
  • OFA-010 Occupational First Aid Level 1 *

* Note: TFS-010, WSF-019, MVO-071, and OFA-010 must be completed in the first month of the program.

Completion Requirements

  • Students must successfully complete each core course and all mandatory safety training courses required within the program.

Admission Requirements

Prospective students should be able to lift up to 20 kilograms. General physical fitness and the ability to use hand tools for extended periods of time — such as garden hoes, weeding tools and shovels — are also requirements.


How to Apply

  1. Complete the Continuing Education Application for Admission.  Forms can be dropped off or mailed to the Student Services office at your local campus, along with payment for your course fees. If you have questions, please call or email Susan Murray 250-334-5092 or


Accessible Learning

Making education accessible for those with a documented disability is a key priority for NIC. We offer a wide range of services, supports and resources for students. For more information visit: Accessible Learning Services.

Program Highlights

Taught by experienced organic farmers and horticulturalists, this program is designed to familiarize students with the main theories, concepts and practices of small-scale mixed farming. You’ll learn in greenhouse propagation, mixed livestock, farm equipment operation, sustainability, climate change mitigation and adaptation as well as market garden production.

Students will also develop business management skills, marketing skills as well as crop planning, and budgeting.

Career Opportunities

With the cost of produce from California continually increasing and a growing awareness of the environmental costs associated with trucking and transportation, there is a huge opportunity for market gardening to expand in the Comox Valley and beyond. This expansion will require trained gardeners to work on the farms and to own and operate market gardens.


This full-time program is offered Monday to Friday during the day time at the Comox Valley campus.

Supply list

Please come to the first day of class with comfortable clothes and shoes and be prepared to work outside.

Tuition & Costs Estimate

Additional fees may also include necessary equipment, supplies, NIC appointed uniforms, or field trips not included in these estimates.

While we do our best to share accurate and timely fee information, changes may occur. For more information, visit our tuition page.

Domestic Fees

Year 1
Tuition $7,070
Books $180
Total $7,250