Mersey Tobeatic Research Institute (MTRI) : Institut de recherche du Mersey Tobeatic


MTRI is a non-profit co-operative with a mandate to promote sustainable use of natural resources and biodiversity conservation in the Southwest Nova Biosphere Reserve and beyond through research, education, and the operation of a field station.

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Backyard Biodiversity

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Non Timber Forest Products & Agroforestry

Non Timber Forest Products

Non Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) are wild or cultivated forest products other than timber, pulp, shakes, firewood, or other conventional forest products. They are sometimes called bioproducts, botannical forest products, and non-wood forest products, among other things, but "NTFP" is the most common term that is being used today.


Many NTFPs have economic, environmental, and social benefits for our forests and surrounding communities. Some examples are food (mushrooms, berries, roots, etc), medicinal products (tea leaves, tree bark, etc), decorative and aesthetic products (trees/shrubs, flowers, bird feeders, etc), even recreational activities (photography, birdwatching, etc).

MTRI and the Nova Forest Alliance are promoting NTFPs to help diversify rural economies and work toward a more healthy and sustainable forestry industry.






Agroforestry is an integrated approach that combines agricultural and forestry technologies to create more diverse, productive, profitable, healthy, and sustainable land-use systems. This is the bigger category in which NTFPs reside. Agroforesty is catching on globally, and here in Nova Scotia we hope to ride the wave! 

Here at MTRI, we are doing a little research of our own into NTFPs, so we can share our knowledge with the community, and help the forest of North Queens and throughout the Southwest Nova Biosphere Reserve become healthier ecologically, economically, socially, and spiritually.

Here are a couple maps Alain Belliveau made of the NTFPs on MTRI's property. We could help you do the same! Drop on by for one of our "Mapping Mondays" at the research station (February 1, 8, and 15, 2010). If you missed making your map on a Monday, just give us a call and we'd be happy to discuss your woodlot, its potential for NTFPs and FSC Certification - and make a map! 




Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) - EXAMPLES

The best resource for researching NTFPs in Atlantic Canada and Nova Scotia is the "From Our Atlantic Woods" NTFP Directory. It can be found online at 

In this guide you'll find the growers and producers that are invigorating our economy and enriching a healthy environment through their ethical, ecological, and entrepreneurial practices. Below are a few examples of NTFPs that you might find in the guide and throughout Nova Scotia. Another wonderful resource for buying local food is 



Berries and U-Pick Farms: 

Jams and Jellies:


Maple Syrup:


Wines and Liqueurs:

Tea Leaves


Natural Health and Personal Care Products




Personal Care Products

Beauty Products


Ornamental and Decorative Products

Christmas Trees and Greenery: 

Native Plants and Landscaping Products: 

Arts & Crafts: 

Figured and Non-Milled Wood Products


Recreational and Ecotourism Opportunities

Guided Treks: &


Nature Photography: 




Other Opportunities


Industry: biochemicals

Carbon Credits




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Click the articles below to zoom in and read more about NTFPs in Nova Scotia.