Over the first five years of the program, more than 300 rural charities have received almost $1 million thanks to farmers. The fascinating stories of the farmers, the charities and their connections to the community paint a colourful portrait of rural Canada which will now be shared on the Canada's Farmers Grow Communities blog.
"Farmers are often unsung heroes in Canadian history," says Kelly Funke, public affairs manager for Monsanto Canada. "But farmers deserve credit for their contributions. That's why we created this program, and why we've now added a blog to our website to further highlight the stories behind the farmer heroes and their chosen charities."
The list of charities can include almost any non-profit organization based in rural Canada. Winners have included 4H clubs; rural daycares; libraries; volunteer fire departments; hospitals; schools; ag societies; senior centres; and other community facilities.
Farmers who are considering an application are encouraged to visit the Canada's Farmers blog at http://canadasfarmers.ca/blog/ for inspiration and to think about their own local charities or non-profit organizations. It takes just five minutes to apply and be entered into the random draw.
Once again in 2017, two $2,500 grants will be awarded in each of 33 different territories across the grain growing regions of northeastern B.C. (Peace River district), Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and the Maritime provinces. Applications are open now through September 30, 2017. And anyone can suggest a charity for a farmer to discover! Simply visit www.CanadasFarmers.ca where complete contest rules and an online application form are available. Winners will be selected by random draw on or about Nov. 1, 2017 and notified by Nov. 15, 2017.
Jan. 25, 2017 - 4-H Canada and Syngenta Canada are pleased to announce the national winners of the Proud to Bee a 4-H’er video contest. 4-H’ers from across Canada were asked to create a short video, either as a club or as individuals, demonstrating their pride in being a part of the 4-H program and reflecting the wide variety of Canadian 4-H clubs, projects, communities and age groups.
The videos submitted during the contest entry period in November—coinciding with National 4-H Month—highlighted the common values and central experience of 4-H in building responsible, caring and contributing young leaders, and the sense of pride and accomplishment they all feel as 4-H’ers.
“Congratulations to all of the winning 4-H clubs and 4-H members who did such a wonderful job of showing their enthusiasm and excitement for 4-H in their videos, making this contest a great success,” said Shannon Benner, CEO of 4-H Canada. “Thanks to Syngenta and the Proud to Bee a 4-H’er initiative, 4-H youth across Canada have had incredible opportunities to grow their knowledge of the important work of pollinators and show leadership in their communities by supporting the creation of pollinator-friendly habitats.”
Approximately 3,800 votes were cast during the online public voting period. The winning entry received a GoPro HERO5 camera. The first and second runner-up entries each received an Apple iPad mini 2 and the remaining top ten entries received a selfie stick. Each of the top ten entries also received 4-H Canada branded items to continue displaying their 4-H pride in their communities.
Proud to Bee a 4-H’er – Winning Video Entries
- 1st place - The Pas Helping Hands / 4-H Manitoba
- 2nd place - Aidan Tully / 4-H Manitoba
- 3rd place - Colton Skori / 4-H Alberta
- 4th place - Comox Valley 4-H Calf Club / 4-H British Columbia
- 5th place - Boots N Bridles 4-H Club / 4-H British Columbia
- 6th place - Irishtown 4-H Club / 4-H New Brunswick
- 7th place - Caroline Carpenter / 4-H New Brunswick
- 8th place - 4-W 4-H Club / 4-H Alberta
- 9th place - Hillmond 4-H Beef Club / 4-H Saskatchewan
- 10th place - Jocelyn Kerr / 4-H British Columbia
Since 2014, close to 100,000 seed packets have been distributed across Canada, through the generous support of Syngenta, giving 4-H’ers and others the opportunity to create pollinator-friendly habitats and to enjoy the outdoors.
“The addition of the Proud to Bee a 4-H’er video contest in 2016 was a fun and fitting way to cap off a successful year of activities that saw more than 120 4-H Canada clubs from coast-to-coast-to-coast support the important work of pollinators. The enthusiasm that 4-H’ers brought to their Proud to Bee a 4-H’er activities was on full display in their video submissions,” says Dr. Paul Hoekstra, Stewardship and Policy Manager with Syngenta Canada.
Syngenta support for Proud to Bee a 4-H’er is through its Operation Pollinator program, which is focused on research and other initiatives that contribute to enhanced biodiversity and habitat in support of healthy pollinator populations.
To watch the winning videos, please visit www.youtube.com/4HCanada.
Using 360 cameras and virtual reality technology, the new FarmFood360° website gives Canadians the chance to tour real, working farms and food processing plants, all without putting on boots. It’s the latest version of the highly successful Virtual Farm Tours initiative, which was first launched in 2007.
“Canadians want to know more about their food, but they are also increasingly removed from its production,” says Ian McKillop, chair of Farm & Food Care Canada. “Changing technology also means they are looking for and finding information in different ways.
“FarmFood360° keeps pace with both these factors; it uses modern technology to immerse them right in the process, and address their questions in the most compelling way possible.”
Farm & Food Care partnered with Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Ltd. and Dairy Farmers of Canada to add three new tours to the FarmFood360° website – a dairy farm with a Voluntary Milking System, as well as two individual milk and cheese processing facilities. Visitors can access these tours on tablets and desktop computers, as well as through mobile phones and VR (Virtual Reality) viewers. Interviews with the farmers and plant employees involved in each business have also been added.
Both dairy processing facility tours were created in partnership with Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Ltd. Steve Dolson, chair of Gay Lea Foods, says “Farm & Food Care has created an accessible and practical way for us to open the doors to two of our processing facilities – locations that are usually restricted to ensure food safety and quality.”
“Gay Lea Foods is pleased to provide this unique opportunity for Canadians to see how milk from family farms is transformed into the milk, cream and cheese they know and love.”
Michael Barrett, president and CEO of Gay Lea Foods, added “we are tremendously proud of our employees and happy to highlight the passion, care and dedication that goes into the wholesome products our company is known for.”
As an original partner in the first Virtual Farm Tours project, Dairy Farmers of Canada again worked with Farm & Food Care to film a dairy farm using Voluntary Milking System in Prince Edward Island. These tours compliment the two dairy farm tours already on the site – featuring farms that use both free stall and tie stall milking technologies.
“Using new technology to bring farm life to Canadians is both exciting and a critical part of food production,” says Wally Smith, president of Dairy Farmers of Canada. “This modern platform is a great way of doing just that. These immersive tours open barn doors to show the passion and care our farmers put into the food they produce.”
This national initiative is being launched with a newly rebranded and interactive website, www.FarmFood360.ca. The site features all 23 farms originally featured on the Virtual Farm Tour platform plus the three new virtual reality tours. Additional tours will be added later in 2017.
“Much more” soon started becoming a reality and on Jan. 11th, the now 33-year-old Chilliwack, B.C. dairyman, hay salesman and cattle dealer and his wife, Marie (26), became the B.C. & Yukon Outstanding Young Farmers for 2017.
In 2006, TNT Agri Services turned into TNT Hay Sales as Baars started selling hay, first to local horse farms and then to local dairy farms.
“We sell a lot of hay to different dairy farms,” Baars says. Not long after, the young entrepreneur expanded TNT to include cattle sales. When Farm Credit Canada offered him a large loan with “no strings attached” in early 2011, Baars used it to start his own dairy farm.
“I had enough money to buy quota for 15 cows,” he recalls.
Two years later, Marie’s grandmother asked if they would manage her 160-cow 80-acre dairy farm in east Abbotsford. The Baars agreed on condition they could buy it.
“We amalgamated our small herd with her larger herd and have been steadily improving the facilities over the past few years,” Baars reports.
His entrepreneurship did not stop there. Last year, he purchased additional hay-growing acreage in Greendale and joined up with two partners to buy a 472-acre 100-cow dairy in Manitoba.
“We have already grown that farm by 20 per cent,” Baars says.
He has also served as a director of both the Mainland Young Milk Producers and the B.C. Young Farmers. Baars’ entrepreneurial spirit even extends itself to his recreational activities. Gary and his father-in-law have begun holding Cornfield Races twice a year, inviting friends and neighbours to race beat-up cars on the farm.
To earn the 2017 award from judges Rick Thiessen (2004 BC & Canadian Outstanding Young Farmer), Mark Sweeney (retired B.C. Ministry of Agriculture berry and horticulture specialist) and Kurt Bausenhaus (KPMG), the Baars outpointed Jeremy and Tamara Vaandrager of
Vaandrager Farms in west Abbotsford.
After managing several egg farms for other owners, the Vaandragers obtained a 3,000 bird quota in the 2010 B.C. Egg Marketing Board new entrant lottery. In the six years since, they have increased their quota holdings to 6,000 birds and are in the process of converting their farm from a free-run operation to an aviary.
“Aviaries have become common in Europe but it is still a relatively new system in North America,” Vaandrager notes.
The BCOYF program is sponsored by the BC Broiler Hatching Egg Commission, Clearbrook Grain & Milling, Farm Credit Canada and Insure Wealth. To be eligible for the award, applicants must be under 40 and derive at least two-thirds of their gross revenue from farming. They are
judged on the progress in their agricultural careers, the sustainability of their farming operations and involvement in their industry and community.
Gary and Marie Baars will represent B.C. at the national OYF competition in Penticton, B.C., in November. The national competition is supported by AdFarm, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Annex Business Media, Bayer Crop Science, BDO, CIBC, Farm Management Canada and John Deere.
But, when I asked her what she thought of two on-farm animal welfare breaches that made the mainstream news last fall, her shoulders sagged slightly and a small sigh escaped from her lips. I was taken aback.
“Sorry,” she said as she collected herself. “It’s just that there’s so much good being done out there that doesn’t make the news but agriculture is a slave to its exceptions.” We carried on chatting for a little while and by the end of the conversation, she was back to her usual bubbly self, but that one brief moment of resignation startled me – perhaps because it was so out-of-character.
I think any farmer who strives to do what’s right grimaces when an undercover video surfaces. We cannot deny that Code of Practice violations will occur from time to time on Canadian farms – and yes, poultry operations too. What we can do, is acknowledge and correct those breaches. We can train personnel, instil respect for the animals in our care, reprimand and penalize as necessary and learn lessons from what happened.
But let us not forget that there’s another side to the coin. As well as recognizing when things have gone wrong, it’s equally important to acknowledge things done right, and applaud the many shining examples we own in this industry of sustainable farming. We congratulate not because they are exceptions, but because they are – happily – instances of the trending norm. As an industry, it’s essential to remind ourselves of that.
So, on that note, in this issue we are delighted to tip our cap to Farmcrest Foods Ltd. (Farmcrest) of Salmon Arm, B.C., recipients of the 2016 Canadian Poultry Sustainability Award. As you read on, you’ll discover how Farmcrest is dedicated to continual learning and improvement, takes responsibility as stewards of a sensitive land area and works to ensure that employees are treated like family. The operation is a true model of sustainability in all of its forms.
Owners Richard Bell and Alan Bird will receive $2,000, and a farm gate sign as well as the award itself. We congratulate them on their achievement.
In closing, I would also like to take the time to first acknowledge all of the applicants for the award. Your dedication and commitment to your own longevity and that of the industry is commendable.
I would be remiss as well, if I didn’t acknowledge our Canadian Poultry Sustainability Award judges this year – former Canadian Poultry editor, Kristy Nudds; Valerie Carney, poultry research scientist and technology transfer coordinator with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry; and Al Dam, provincial poultry specialist with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. The quality of the applicants was exceptional and selecting our winner was no enviable task. Your thorough review process and willingness to give time to the selection of our winner is appreciated.
Recognition, also, to would-be sponsors of the cancelled Canadian Poultry Sustainability Symposium: Big Dutchman, Clark Ag Systems Ltd., Chicken Farmers of Canada, Cobb-Vantress, Egg Farmers of Canada, Farm Credit Canada and Walbern Agri Ltd. Thank you for your support.
Pelletier is cross-appointed to both UBC's Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences and the campus' faculty of management, to support interdisciplinary research at the Okanagan campus.
"Food system sustainability is a subject of increasing importance in Canada and beyond and I look forward to collaborating with UBC colleagues and others in this research area," says Pelletier. "I would like to thank Egg Farmers of Canada for their participation and support of this crucial area of study."
As part of his role, Pelletier will be responsible for directing and managing research programs to support sustainability measurement and management for the Canadian egg industry and food sector more broadly. His work will include exploring sustainability measurement and management, life-cycle thinking and resource efficiency.
"We are proud to be working with Dr. Pelletier," says Tim Lambert, chief executive officer of Egg Farmers of Canada. "Egg farming is already one of the most environmentally sustainable forms of animal agriculture. Building on this reality, our strong commitment to sustainability and our investment in Dr. Pelletier's innovative research will ensure that the Canadian egg industry continues to improve its environmental footprint."
Pelletier holds a BSc from the University of Victoria, a Master of Environmental Studies from Dalhousie University and an interdisciplinary Research PhD in Ecological Economics, also from Dalhousie. He also conducted post-doctoral research for Environment Canada and, most recently, for the European Commission Joint Research Centre's Institute for Environment and Sustainability.
EFC will be providing funding for the new chair in connection with research activities, including the areas of sustainability measurement and management, life-cycle thinking and resource efficiency.
EFC has released a video that provides additional information on Pelletier and his research, available online here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig_PHQkYpfo.
The summit, which will take place in Ottawa in July 2017 (to coincide with the 150th anniversary of confederation), will host over 600, 4-H delegates from across Canada and around the world where they will share experiences, develop skills and learn about agriculture. The summit will include four days of workshops and plenary sessions including a two-day trade show focusing on education and career opportunities. This investment is made through the Growing Forward 2, AgriCompetitiveness program, a five-year, up to $114.5 million initiative.
Canada's minister of agriculture and agri-food, Lawrence MacAulay, also announced changes to Farm Credit Canada's (FCC) Young Farmer Loan. FCC will increase its support for young farmers by doubling the amount of credit available to $1 million from $500,000, and lowering the possible minimum down payment to 20 per cent of the value of the loan which supports the purchase or improvement of farmland and buildings.
Dec. 7, 2016 - Andrew and Jennifer Lovell of Keswick Ridge, N.B. and Dominic Drapeau and Célia Neault of Ste-Françoise-de-Lotbinière, Que. have been named Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers for 2016. These two farm families were chosen from seven regional farm couples across Canada at OYF’s national event last week in Niagara Falls, Ont.
Both families have dreamed of owning their own farm since they were young and were not afraid to make changes and embrace technology along the way. Their entrepreneurial spirits and adaptability has made them successful both on and off the farm.
“All of this year’s regional honourees have shown us their incredible passion for agriculture,” OYF president Luanne Lynn says. “It was extremely difficult for the judges to make their decision, but ultimately our winners stood out for their state-of-the art thinking and commitment to the future of Canadian agriculture.”
The Lovell’s story is different than most because neither of them grew up on a farm. In 2012 they purchased their farm River View Orchards with roots tracing back to 1784, and created a diversified u-pick farm market operation. It wasn’t an easy start as they suffered $100,000 in damage in 2014, but they persevered and adapted their plans until they were able to begin full production again. By offering fence and trellis construction services and building attractions which brought over 1,400 visitors to their farm they were able to carry on with the farm they have always dreamed of.
Drapeau and Neault are third-generation dairy and field crop farmers who are not afraid to make changes and embrace technology. Raised in a farming family, Dominic got involved in the family business at a young age. When he was 16, he was performing artificial insemination on cows and developed his management skills by taking over the herd and feeding responsibilities. In the barn they use genomic testing on young animals, motion detectors for reproduction, a smart scale on the mixer-feeder and temperature probes close to calving. In the fields, the farm uses a satellite navigation system for levelling, draining, seeding, fertilizing and spraying. With these innovations over the last four years, they have enabled the farm to increase overall yields by five to 10 per cent each year.
“The national event in Niagara Falls this year was a great opportunity to showcase all of the great contributions to Canadian agriculture,” Lynn says. “All of the regional OYF honourees really went outside of the box and pushed the boundaries this year.”
Every year this event brings recognition to outstanding farm couples in Canada between 18 and 39 years of age who have exemplified excellence in their profession while fostering better urban-rural relations. The Lovell’s and Drapeau/Neault were chosen from seven regional finalists, including the following honourees from the other five regions:
- Brian and Jewel Pauls, Chilliwack B.C.
- Shane and Kristin Schooten, Diamond City, Alta.
- Dan and Chelsea Erlandson, Outlook, Sask.
- Jason and Laura Kehler, Carman, Man.
- Adrian and Jodi Roelands, Lambton Shores, Ont.
Barry Cloutier, a farmer from near Ponteix, Sask., is one farmer that Back to Ag has helped.
In October of 2014, Cloutier was running a round baler when trouble struck. “The twine yanked out,” he explains. “To see where the problem was, I had to leave the baler running.” That’s when he saw the buildup of chaff and straw. “I’ve had two baler fires, so I’m pretty wary of extra chaff and straw. I reached out to remove the blockage - I wasn’t thinking at that point, and that’s when my fingers found the roller chain,” Cloutier says. “I knew better, but it was close to supper time, and I wanted to be done my work in 15 minutes.”
Cloutier had lost portions of his index and middle finger on his right hand. Cloutier immediately called 911. After some initial confusion on where he exactly was, the paramedics found him, and the ambulance rushed him to the hospital.
After a night in hospital and then day surgery, Cloutier was back on the farm. “I had to have my hand bandaged and cleaned daily at the local hospital. I also had to drive to hospital for a time for a hand therapy program,” he says. “The physical therapist told me that she could see I was stubborn and that I was going to work to get my hand and fingers to the point where I could make a fist. And I did.”
Even with his injury, Cloutier hasn’t slowed down on the farm. “I don’t want to do anything else,” he explains. “This is where my heart is. This is me; this is who I am, and this is what I do.”
However, Cloutier’s injury has affected his ability to do his job on the farm. “It’s a good thing I’m stubborn,” he says. “Things are more difficult. I have to think and plan very carefully what I’m going to do. My hand is always very sensitive, always cold. If I’m climbing a ladder or working around machinery, I have to be very thoughtful about how to use my hand; the strength isn’t there anymore.” Cloutier has looked into other programs and personal insurance, but no program or insurance existed that would be able to help him deal with his injury on the farm.
That’s when he saw an article about Back to Ag.
“I was waiting for my wife and happened across a newspaper article about Back to Ag,” he explains. “I thought, wow, that’s interesting!” Cloutier explains that he started thinking about applying and what type of technical solution would best accommodate his injury. Cloutier faces many challenges in having only two fingers on his dominant hand and hauling five-gallon pails is one of them.
With over 200 head of livestock, Cloutier was dependent on a shovel and pail to feed his animals. “I put out pails six months of the year,” he explains. “I needed something that would help ease the pressure and pain on my hand.”
Through the Back to Ag Program, Cloutier was able to purchase a cattle-feed cart. This grain handling system means that Cloutier is able to feed his livestock more efficiently and safely, without the risk of injuring his hand further.
When talking about the grain handling system, he is enthusiastic. “I like the way it looks; it’s a great idea. I like the idea of not having to haul those doggone pails.” He does have one problem with the new grain handling system, “It might make me want to farm that much longer,” he laughs.
Cloutier encourages other traumatically-injured farmers to find out more about the Back to Ag Program. “Definitely apply,” he says. “Find out more and use it for something that’s going to help you and be useful on your farm.”
CASA is currently accepting applications for the Back to Ag program for the 2016–17 funding period. Applications are being received on a first come, first served basis. Applicants must be farmers who have experienced a life-altering incident resulting in a disability. They must demonstrate that the purchase of specialized equipment or adaptation of existing equipment will help them get back to work on the farm safely.
For more information about program criteria or to submit an application, please visit casa-acsa.ca/BacktoAg or call 877-452-2272.
The CAHC has named Dr. Grant Maxie of Puslinch, Ont. as this year’s recipient of the award. Through his hard work and dedication, Dr. Maxie has made many significant contributions to the Canadian animal health industry.
Maxie has been integrally involved in the laboratory management and surveillance scene both in Canada and internationally over his distinguished career. Since 1997 he has been Director of the Animal Health Laboratory (AHL), University of Guelph and since 2007 co-executive director of laboratory services, University of Guelph. In these positions he has provided leadership in several national diagnostic and surveillance initiatives.
Most recently, he has lead the Animal Health Lab and provided guidance to industry through the recent PEDV and Avian Influenza outbreaks in Ontario. He is the project chair for the Disease Surveillance Plan 2013- 2018, an Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs project, administered by AHL that has enhanced the conduct of disease surveillance in Ontario and has contributed nationally as well.
Accompanying Maxie’s nomination for the Carl Block Award were several letters of support from both Canadian and international bodies, which is a testament to his influence globally.
In a news release, CAHC says that considering that the primary criteria to receive the Carl Block Award is that recipients demonstrate leadership, commitment and passion for enhancing animal agriculture in Canada, it is easily apparent why Grant Maxie is the 2016 recipient.
across the region, through research, teaching, outreach and collaboration.
Gibson joins the UofG from St. Mary’s University in Halifax, N.S. He’ll be working through the OAC’s school of environmental design and rural development.
“Ryan’s expertise and experience are a perfect fit for this new position,” says Rene Van Acker, OAC dean. “His focus on community-engaged scholarship combined with his enthusiasm, assures me he will do great things while working with the communities of southwestern Ontario.”
Gibson’s research examines issues related to the future of rural communities and regions, and topics such as governance, immigration and revitalization. He is also president of the Canadian Community Economic Development Network, a national organization committed to strengthening communities by creating economic opportunities that enhance social and environmental conditions.
Originally from rural Manitoba, Gibson has a deep respect for rural communities, rural people and the events that shape their futures. Growing up witnessing the transformations in rural development, agriculture and their influence on communities instilled a fascination and commitment to rural issues.
Libro has committed to endow the professorship with $500,000 over 10 years, which will be matched to existing donations, for a combined gift of $1 million.
Overall goals of the professorship include:
- Establishing southwestern Ontario as a defined economic region of the province and identifying strategies to shape the future vision of economic development
- Strengthening links between rural and urban communities to establish solutions for an integrated regional economy
- Building a network among Ontario’s post-secondary institutions and research facilities to collaborate on initiatives to grow regional economic development
Senior Champion: Spencer Graling from St. Paul, Alta.; First Runner-up: Daniel Vander Hout from Waterdown, Ont.; Second Runner-up: Katelyn Ayers from Severn, Ont.
Junior Champion: Douglas Archer from Mount Pleasant, Ont.; First Runner-up: Maxwell Archer from Mount Pleasant, Ont.; Second Runner-up: Aleri Swalwell from Strathmore, Alta.
This 32nd edition of CYSA welcomed 30 competitors aged 11 to 24 from across Canada who offered their insight and solutions regarding the following topics:
- What is the impact of public opinion on Canadian farmers?
- How would you explain a GMO to a non-farmer?
- What does the next generation of agriculture bring to the table?
- How can we improve the media's perception of Canadian agriculture?
- Old MacDonald had a farm - but what about Mrs. MacDonald?
"Once again it was wonderful to see the continuing interest of the very talented young people across Canada that want to speak out about agriculture. From a board perspective, we all take great pleasure in ensuring this exciting competition prevails annually to capture the thoughts of each and every participant," says Ted Young, CYSA chair.
CYSA also took the opportunity to present long-time board member and past president John J. MacDonald with a plaque recognizing his more than 10 years with CYSA and naming him honourary president. CYSA also presented a recognition plaque to honour board member and past president Richard Kutnz who is concluding his term on the CYSA board.
As announced after the Seniors final round the topics for 2017 will be:
- Working in agriculture is more than just farming
- Does digital farming have a place in the future of Canadian agriculture?
- Farm gate to dinner plate: The importance of food traceability for Canadian consumers
- How will we feed 9 billion people by 2050?
- Food waste: What is the global impact and who is responsible for making a change?
Each year the renowned public speaking competition is held at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto. The competition is open to youth ages 11 to 24 with a passion for agriculture whether raised on a farm, in the country or in the city.
Canadian Young Speakers for Agriculture is a national, bilingual competition that gives participants an opportunity to share their opinions, ideas and concerns about the Canadian agri-food industry in a five- to seven-minute prepared speech.
Since the first competition held at the Royal Winter Fair in honour of the International Year of the Youth in 1985, it has gone on to become the premier public speaking event in Canada for young people interested in agriculture, with more than 900 participants in total over the years. For more information about CYSA visit www.cysa-joca.ca.
“Agriculture is a natural fit for this green jobs initiative,” says Portia MacDonald-Dewhirst, executive director of the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC). “Canada’s primary producers are the frontline caregivers for much of our nation’s lands and waters and are therefore also the most invested in making sure heathy ecosystems are maintained.”
To qualify as a green job the job must have a green mandate or the employer needs to have an environmental focus. For example, the job must help reduce the consumption of energy and raw materials; limit greenhouse gas emissions; minimize waste and pollution; and protect and restore ecosystems.
Such opportunities may be found in non-profit environmental organizations; solar and wind technology companies; environmental science centres; watershed and water resource agencies, farms and farming co-ops; conservation organizations; museums and educational institutions; waste management companies; and information technology companies, among others.
For agriculture, as long as the company meets one of the following specifications they are considered eligible for the program: the farm/company has a sustainable mandate or focus which helps protect and restore ecosystems; it has developed and implemented systems to reduce waste within the industry; it produces organic products which reduce the use of chemicals; it conducts research on the environmental impact and resolutions within the industry; or it is an agricultural manufacturing company that develops equipment that reduces emissions and energy use.
This initiative is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Youth Employment Strategy.
The farm safety program will offer access to agriculture industry-specific information to ensure agriculture employers understand the regulations, rights and responsibilities around safe workplaces and to identify safety risks on their farms.
“Many people in agriculture work outdoors with heavy equipment or livestock in locations that can be a far distance from emergency services, which can increase the risk of injury,” says Eichler. “This program will give producers the information they need to comply with safety and health regulations and ensure safe work environments for themselves and their employees.”
Services will include:
- information and resources on health and safety regulations, risk-specific tip sheets and signage and basic safety orientation for farm workers, supervisors and owners;
- on-site safety advisors who will work directly with farm businesses to identify and address farm risks;
- commodity-specific farm safety workshops; and
- safety awareness training for farm workers and supervisors, as well as hazard-specific training.
“Our goal is to provide resources for farmers that are practical,” says Dan Mazier, KAP president. “Rather than just telling them to read through safety regulations, we are making someone available to show them what they can do to reduce accidents on their farms and comply with provincial regulations.”
SAFE Work Manitoba is a project partner and will provide funding, expertise and other resources to support the initiative.
“SAFE Work Manitoba commends KAP for taking this important step in establishing a farm safety program,” adds Jamie Hall, chief operating officer, SAFE Work Manitoba. “This program will help make Manitoba’s farms safer for farmers, their families and for workers. We look forward to a continued partnership by working with KAP to bring safety information and resources to Manitoba farms.”
Work to establish the program will begin immediately. Funding will be provided through the Growing Forward 2 – Growing Actions program, which supports industry-led initiatives to increase competitiveness and develop innovative solutions for agricultural organizations. For more information about Growing Actions and other programs, visit www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/growing-forward-2.
The federal and provincial governments are investing $176 million in Manitoba under Growing Forward 2, a five-year, federal-provincial-territorial policy framework to advance the agriculture industry, helping producers and processors become more innovative and competitive in world markets.
For more information on Manitoba’s agricultural programs and services, follow the Twitter account @MBGovAg
KAP is Manitoba’s general farm policy organization, representing farmers and commodity organizations from across the province. For more information about KAP, visit www.kap.mb.ca .
Collection sites will be open on the days specified from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Monday, Oct. 3
Central Alberta Co-op in Innisfail, 403-505-1467
Edberg Crop Management in Edberg, 780-877-0003
Crop Production Services in Westlock, 780-349-4525
Crop Production Services in Smoky Lake, 780-656-4343
Tuesday, Oct. 4
Richardson Pioneer in Provost, 780-753-2511
Alliance Seed Cleaning Association in Alliance, 780-879-3927
Parkland Fertilizers in Lacombe, 780-782-2232
Neerlandia Co-op in Barrhead, 780-674-2820
Wednesday Oct. 5
Andrukow Group Solutions in Saint Paul, 780-645-5915
Richardson Pioneer in Lavoy, 780-658-2408
McEwen's Fuels & Fertilizers in Athabasca, 780-675-9500
Crop Production Services in Camrose, 780-672-3025
Thursday, Oct. 6
Crop Production Services in Vermilion, 780-853-4711
North Corridor Co-op in Thorhild, 780-398-3975
Leduc Co-op in Leduc, 780-986-3000
Andrukow Group Solutions in Wainwright, 780-842-3306
Friday, Oct. 7
Sturgeon Valley Fertilizers in Legal, 780-961-3088
Andrukow Group Solutions in Viking, 780-336-3180
UFA in Drayton Valley, 780-621-0313
Crop Production Services in Lloydminster, 780-871-4601
CleanFARMS, a national, industry-led agricultural waste stewardship organization, has partnered with CropLife Canada and the Canadian Animal Health Institute (CAHI) to deliver this program to Alberta farmers. The plant science and animal health industries are committed to safely and responsibly collecting and disposing of obsolete pesticides and livestock/equine medications at no cost to farmers.
For more information, visit www.cleanfarms.ca or call 1-877-622-4460.
In addition to Cobb presentations, topics of discussion included vaccination, sanitation, maintenance as well as many other important hatchery procedures and practices.
“These hatchery managers and owner/operators play a key role in the Canadian poultry industry and this type of roundtable meeting provides an ideal opportunity for everyone to visit with Cobb experts in person, share ideas and best practices, and network with other industry professionals that deal with similar issues in their operations,” says Trevor Gies, marketing manager for Cobb North America.
“Instead of focusing on general topics, we covered areas that everyone was interested in and wanted to learn more about,” said Ben Green, hatchery specialist in the Cobb World Technical Support Team. “Each attendee suggested topics of interest before the meeting through our event website and that allowed us to create a meeting agenda addressing everyone’s needs. We had great participation from the group and were able to help answer many of their questions.
Roelands Plant Farms Inc. is a greenhouse in south western Ontario where Adrian and Jodi custom grow premium cucumber, tomato and pepper seedlings for sale to vegetable production greenhouses. Since construction of the greenhouse in 2013, they have since expanded twice, bringing their total operation to 12 acres. The industry uses computer technology to automatically control almost every aspect of climate, and the increasing amount of automation available to growers enables them to produce extremely high quality vegetables while keeping costs competitive.
“The Ontario OYF region put on a great event in conjunction with Outdoor Farm Show in Woodstock to showcase the OYF nominees,” says OYF vice president East Carl Marquis. “Adrian and Jodi really demonstrated their passion for agriculture and I’m excited for them to represent the region at the national event this fall.”
Both Adrian and Jodi have been involved in agriculture their whole lives. Adrian grew up on a farrow to finish hog operation, and Jodi grew up working alongside her family on their broiler breeder operation. Even before they got married, it was evident that farming together was in their future - it was just a matter of how and when.
In 2012 Adrian and Jodi made the decision to venture out on their own, and by early 2013 they had started construction on four acres of greenhouse propagation space on a newly purchased farm. The operation started with just the two of them, and quickly grew to 60 full-time employees and another 100 staff seasonally. Managing a farm like this has meant learning a lot of new skills quickly, and adapting their management styles accordingly.
One of the principles that guide Adrian and Jodi is to remain committed to their agricultural roots, and endeavour to be a leader into the changing future of farming. They see the future of the family farm being much different than the past - it will be larger, more productive and technology based, and will employ more highly-skilled staff.
Celebrating 36 years, Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers’ program is an annual competition to recognize farmers that exemplify excellence in their profession and promote the tremendous contribution of agriculture. Open to participants 18 to 39 years of age, making the majority of income from on-farm sources, participants are selected from seven regions across Canada, with two national winners chosen each year. The program is sponsored nationally by CIBC, John Deere, Bayer, and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada through Growing Forward 2, a federal, provincial, territorial initiative. The national media sponsor is Annex Business Media, and the program is supported nationally by AdFarm, BDO and Farm Management Canada.
Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers for 2016 will be chosen at the National Event in Niagara Falls, Ont. from Nov. 29 – Dec. 4, 2016.
Succession planning - also called transition planning, ensures farm business continuity: it is the only process that links one generation to future generations involved in the farm business, and addresses how the vision, goals and dreams of a farm will carry on.
"According to the recent study, Making Dollars and Sense, less than 1/3 of Canada's farmers have a succession plan, while close to 40 per cent are in the succession stage of their farm business," says Heather Watson, executive director of FMC. She goes on to note, "this signals not only a significant risk to the Canadian agricultural sector, but also an immense opportunity to promote and provide the information, tools and resources for farmers to improve their succession planning practices."
The Bridging the Gap: Step Up to Succession program is comprised of a series of Succession & Transition Planning workshops for farm families coupled with a Successor Development program, exclusively for young farmers.
FMC will be working with renowned farm family coach Elaine Froese and business management consultant Cedric MacLeod to help lead the program and coach participants throughout their journey.
In the true spirit of collaboration and partnership, Canada's Outstanding Young Farmers' Program, the Canadian Young Farmers' Forum and 4-H Canada are partnering with FMC to help ensure the program is a complete success.
For more information on the program, please visit Farm Management Canada's website.
The half-day course is available in English or French, online or in class in towns across Ontario and at the University of Guelph’s Ridgetown campus. To register, call 1-866-225-9020, or go online at www.IPMcertified.ca.
Training and helping farmers to recognize and determine the field presence of insect pests is part of the Pollinator Health Action Plan to be released soon. The plan also helps farmers learn best management practices for dealing with Neonicotinoids (NNI), a class of synthetic pesticides, used extensively in Ontario. NNIs are targeted to kill pests, but they are also toxic to beneficial insects like bees and other pollinators. The plan is part of the Province’s larger strategy to reduce neonicotinoid use and improve pollinator health.
Ontario has taken action on pollinator health, working towards an 80 per cent reduction in the number of acres planted with neonicotinoid-treated corn and soybean seed by 2017. This is the strongest action to date on neonicotinoid pesticides in North America.
April 13, 2016 – Andrew Campbell of Strathroy has been named the 2016 recipient of the Farm & Food Care Ontario Champion Award.
The award was presented at Farm & Food Care’s annual meeting on April 13 by Bruce Christie, a Farm & Food Care board member. Campbell was nominated for the award by the Middlesex Federation of Agriculture, with letters of support provided by Dairy Farmers of Ontario and writers from www.DinnerStartsHere.ca – a consumer-facing blog site populated by young Ontario farmers.
Middlesex Federation of Agriculture spokesperson Lucia Lilbourne describes Campbell as an eloquent individual who willingly takes every opportunity to engage consumers, and one who is very proactive in tackling challenges through a variety of channels. Justin Williams and Scott Snyder, farmers who write for Dinner Starts Here, says Campbell is “a true leader in the social media movement in Canadian agriculture.” They credit his hard work as the reason Dinner Starts Here is an effective consumer outreach initiative.
While active on a number of different media platforms, nominators cite Campbell’s #Farm365 initiative – a twitter campaign where he tweeted one photo a day from his farm – as a crowning achievement. The initiative, which lasted officially throughout 2015, was intended to give Canadians a look at dairy farming in Ontario; it garnered Campbell 17,500 Twitter followers, attracted international support and attention, and continues to be used by farmers and agricultural advocates in countries across the globe.
Campbell is also a dynamic speaker and volunteer, says Ralph Dietrich, chair of the board for Dairy Farmers of Ontario, which also participated in the successful program. Dietrich noted that Campbell has appeared on programs such as CTV and CBC News, CTV Canada AM, The Agenda with Steve Paikin and more. He and his #Farm365 initiative has also been the subject of many news articles, and he continues to act as a spokesperson for his industry in many formats.
Campbell is also an effective communications trainer and facilitator. According to the nominators, he is always willing to help others positively promote Canadian agriculture, whether through communications training, debate facilitation or volunteering his farm for events.
“Andrew is a true leader and an excellent representative for the next generation of farmers,” says Dietrich.The Champion Award has been presented annually, since 1999, to worthy agricultural advocates.
Farm & Food Care Ontario is a coalition of farmers, agriculture and food partners proactively working together to ensure public trust and confidence in food and farming. For more information visit www.farmfoodcareON.org
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Western Poultry ConferenceMon Feb 27, 2017
Alberta Poulty Industry Annual General MeetingsTue Feb 28, 2017
The Food and Beverage ConventionThu Mar 02, 2017
Manitoba Turkey Producers' 48th Annual General MeetingTue Mar 07, 2017 @11:30AM - 04:00PM
London Poultry ShowWed Apr 05, 2017
Canada's Food Loss and Waste Forum | Finding solutionsWed Apr 12, 2017