This Tuesday, La Cuisine collective d’Hochelaga-Maisonneuve (La CCHM) officially inaugurated its agricultural farm on the “land” of the head office of the Société des alcools du Québec (SAQ), located on rue Tellier, in Assomption Sud. –Longue Pointe (ASLP).
Subway visited the premises with the director general of the organization, Benoist de Peyrelongue, last May. The project was still at an embryonic stage this spring, with the 530 m² greenhouse not yet built.
Three months later, the CCHM can proudly declare: “mission accomplished”.
“It’s a great collective accomplishment and a huge amount of work by the team, which is really very committed, supports Benoist de Peyrelongue. It’s a dream come true,” he adds, rolling his eyes as he mentions that the sunny weather of the day is a reflection of what’s going on in their heads.
An ideal time therefore, for an ideal cause, according to the CEO, since this expansion of the urban farm will allow the organization to respond even more effectively to its mission oriented towards food security and social reintegration. The results have been so good so far that Benoist de Peyrelongue is convinced that the organization will reach its target of producing 10 to 15 tonnes of vegetables and fruit this year.
“A tiny bit of fruit,” he says. The large fruits, it will be necessary to establish the 70 trees here. There is another site that is emerging and where there will be about fifteen other fruit trees.
Benoist de Peyrelongue does not want to stop there and continues his research to find new cultivable land in the East, as well as new partners.
Give back to the community
Several political and economic players were present at the event, including of course the general manager of the SAQ, Catherine Dagenais, the main partner of this new agricultural farm.
I am very proud of the partnership we have with La CCHM. Giving back to the community is what everyone should be doing.”
Catherine Dagenais, General Manager of the SAQ
The Liberal MNA for Hochelaga, Soraya Martinez Ferrada, for her part, underlines the evolution of the urban farm of La CCHM, whose facilities developed in 2021 around the real estate complex of commercial, industrial and office rental spaces Le 5600, rue Hochelaga.
“It’s a beautiful sequel to the vertical garden at 5600 that Benoist started with Jacques Dupras [gestionnaire du 5600]but it is above all a rooting of a solidarity urban agricultural farm, centered on the community, made by the community with the community.
Also present, the mayor of Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, Pierre Lessard-Blais, and the councilor for the Maisonneuve–Longue-Pointe district, Alia Hassan-Cournol, underlined their pride that this project was carried out in their borough.
“La Cuisine collective is an excellent example of a community organization that is constantly innovating and adapting,” says the mayor of MHM.
We see that the needs are there, particularly with the increase in grocery prices.
Pierre Lessard-Blais, Mayor of MHM
The elected official also explains that the Borough has modified the regulations in ASLP to allow this kind of project, “a corner that needs love”, he concludes.
Alia Hassan-Cournol goes in the same direction, underlining the problems of cohabitation in ASLP between residential and industrial.
“It’s projects like that that we want to see multiply in the borough and it’s a way of fighting against food deserts and against heat islands,” says the councillor.
Various ways are possible to obtain the products of La CCHM, among other things by visiting the organization’s website to order your basket or by going to the market on Fridays and Saturdays at the Place des tisserandes on rue Ontario in in front of the Nativity of the Holy Virgin Church in Hochelaga.