As part of the integration, Nutreco’s combined animal nutrition businesses in North America, consisting of Shur-Gain, Landmark and Hi-Pro Feeds, will now trade under the name Trouw Nutrition.
Hi-Pro Feeds is a leading manufacturer and distributor of high performance animal feed in North America. The company network comprises of 15 individual feed mills with operations spanning three states in Southwest U.S. and western Canada serving over 5,000 customers.
Nutreco’s global animal nutrition activities trade under the company brand Trouw Nutrition, with the exception of North America where its innovative nutritional solutions have been brought to the market under a variety of company brands including Shur-Gain and Landmark.
“The completion of the acquisition is a good moment to unite our combined businesses of Shur-Gain, Landmark and Hi-Pro Feeds under Trouw Nutrition,” says Jacques Leclerc, Managing Director of Trouw Nutrition Canada. “This rebranding will link our value proposition to our customers more directly with Trouw Nutrition’s portfolio of products, animal production models and services as well as its global R&D resource.”
The Trouw Nutrition global R&D network consists of five research centres – including Trouw Nutrition Agresearch in Burford, Ontario – and over fifty collaborations with universities and research institutes around the world.
The strength of the global innovations of Trouw Nutrition, together with the combined global and local expertise to turn the science-base into practical, applicable nutrition solutions will provide additional benefits to customers throughout North America.
In Canada, Shur-Gain will become the key product brand that will be used for all premixes, farm minerals, concentrates and complete feed. The Shur-Gain dealer network will also retain its existing branding.
In the U.S., both Hi-Pro Feeds and Shur-Gain will be retained as product brands under Trouw Nutrition.
“We are excited about the opportunities this acquisition brings to our customers and employees in Canada and the USA. As a global animal nutrition company, Trouw Nutrition has the resources and network available to create additional value for our customers through an expanded offering of proprietary nutritional products, animal production models, and services,” said Daren Kennett, founder of Hi-Pro Feeds.
During the integration phase of Hi-Pro Feeds into the Trouw Nutrition organisation, Daren Kennett will lead the Western Region (Manitoba, Alberta, British Columbia) as well as the Hi-Pro Feeds operations in the U.S., reporting to Jacques Leclerc.
Our partner, Agriculture in the Classroom Canada, is looking to change that. This national organization is working hard to enhance young people’s understanding and appreciation of the sector. And thanks to a new partnership between Egg Farmers of Canada and Agriculture in the Classroom Canada, more Canadian children will learn about eggs and egg farming.
I had an opportunity to sit down and chat with the organization’s executive director, Johanne Ross, about why it’s an exciting time for young people to get involved in agriculture and egg farming. Now that the organization is reaching over one million students across the country, it might be time for even more students and teachers to sit up and take notice.
How did Agriculture in the Classroom get its start?
It’s evolved out of many years of provincial organizations working together.
Before Agriculture in the Classroom Canada was formalized, there were 8 functioning provincial Agriculture in the Classroom organizations. We would get together to share best practices, teaching tools, and programs, so we had a really great network going.
Within the last five years, we started to realize that a national voice was something that would be very useful for bringing our work to the forefront. There’s been a real shift with the general public—this includes schools—in that people really want to understand where their food comes from and how it gets to their plate.
There are a lot of groups that may not be as close to our sector that would love to tell the Canadian agriculture story for us, but it’s our story to tell, to ensure we are having a conversation that is genuine, true and accurate.
We’re very proud of the national structure we’ve developed. Part of the magic of it is that the provincial organizations stayed intact and are able to keep their uniqueness, participate in national initiatives, and work together to create one voice when we are speaking about agriculture education in Canada. The national Board now consists of nine provincial Agriculture in the Classroom organizations.
What are the central goals of Agriculture in the Classroom?
Of course, we have our number on goal, which is to engage with schools—teachers and students. What we’re trying to do is to really open their eyes to what the agriculture industry is.
We want to engage them in inquiry-based learning, and for them to understand where their food comes from and how it gets to their plate; to have the knowledge and appreciation of that so they can make informed decisions.
But then we take that further because we have a role to play within the industry: to be the voice of agriculture. So we try to inspire our industry partners and stakeholders, and this includes private industry and beyond, everyone to participate! Academics, universities, government—everybody needs to find their voice and join the conversation about agriculture and food.
What are the benefits of Agriculture in the Classroom becoming involved with Egg Farmers of Canada?
Egg Farmers of Canada and their provincial and territorial partners across the country are already doing great work and developing great materials, and our role is to become a vehicle for those materials.
Agriculture in the Classroom can help Egg Farmers of Canada enhance their materials even more. We’re talking to teachers all the time about what they need, and what they want to bring to their classrooms—we can communicate that back to partners and help them to develop the right teaching tools that will be useable in a classroom.
We can also help give their farmers a voice. Obviously we’re not the experts in everything, so we love bringing the people we work with into the classroom to help them tell their personal story and share their passion for what they do.
How are students reacting to these resources?
There are a lot of a-ha moments!
We’re taking them beyond their supper plate or the grocery store, so they can understand what this sector is all about. For younger kids, it’s exciting for them just to understand what food comes from what crops and animals. As you get into the older age groups, you can take them through all the careers and discuss how dynamic the industry really is. There’s so much beyond the farm gate—not that the farm gate isn’t important; that’s where it all begins.
This knowledge really opens up student minds to what could be available for them—they can work outside, in downtown Toronto, or wherever. We have so much to offer, and this industry is going to continue to need bright young people to take an interest in the agriculture and food sector as a career choice because we will always have the need to feed more, and to produce food sustainably.
There are jobs coming up for young people that we don’t even know about yet—that’s how quickly it’s moving. Agriculture is just exploding with opportunities for young people.
What do your future plans for Agriculture in the Classroom look like?
We’ve just had some exciting news in that the federal government is going to be extending funding to AITC Canada over the next year, and so we’re ramping up our educational offerings.
Among other initiatives such as a national Agriculture Careers Program, the funding will be going towards the development of something that we’re calling the Canadian Educator Matrix, an online tool for teachers.
For example, let’s say I am a teacher in Toronto—I can go on the matrix and say that I’m a grade 10 teacher in Toronto, teaching science, and I want to know what’s available and related to my specific provincial curriculum. After customizing my search with filters and themes, all related agriculture resources will appear for me to investigate.
It will be a one-stop online shop for teachers to find out what agriculture and food resources and opportunities are available to them.
In addition to following organic practices, farmers in the pasture-raised program provide an enhanced pasture area for hens to forage outdoors. As with all Yorkshire Valley Farms laying hens, the pasture birds enjoy organic non-GMO feed and a cage-free environment in which to lay their eggs.
Since ‘pasture-raised’ is not a defined labelling term in Canada, Yorkshire Valley Farms set about to create a set of standards to which all participating pasture farmers must adhere.
These pasture-raised criteria incorporate the organic standards, while also requiring that hens spend a minimum of 6 hours outdoors per day, weather permitting, in an organically-managed pasture that offers at least 20 ft2 (1.85m2) per hen.
The realities of the Ontario climate mean that this enhanced pasture access can only be ensured for a limited period each year. The pasture program generally runs from late May to October and the eggs are offered as a special seasonal offering.
When consumers buy a Yorkshire Valley Farms product labelled ‘pasture’, they are getting a product that comes from animals that have truly spent time outdoors, foraging on pasture.
In 2016, CBC Marketplace conducted nutritional analysis of a range of eggs and found that eggs from hens that spend time on pasture have higher concentrations of fat-soluble vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids. In particular, eggs from Yorkshire Valley Farms growers had more than double the amount of vitamin D, 3.5 times more vitamin E, and were the lowest in saturated fat compared to other eggs included in the sample set.
The deal gives the Quebec-based company the opportunity to grow its business outside of Canada by planting thousands of new hectares of the Carinata seed in Uruguay.
"This is a made in Canada solution," says Steve Fabijanski, CEO of Agrisoma. "Carinata, is a new crop first developed, tested and grown in Canada and now going global, being farmed as a new second, cash-crop alternative," says Fabijanski.
The partnership opens new opportunities for the Canadian agricultural sector to grow more Carinata and feed the global markets demanding a broad solution for world food security and clean energy.
"This partnership is a shining example of how foreign governments and Canadian business can work together to find sustainable farming solutions that address consumer's increasing demand for healthy food production and renewable energy, says Rodolfo Nin Novoa, Uruguay's Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Under this new deal, both parties anticipate significant economic and rural benefits from production of Carinata in Uruguay as a non-food crop that can be made into low carbon bio and aviation fuels as well as nutritious, GMO-free animal feed.
Carinata was the crop that fueled the world's first 100% bio-jet flight in Ottawa in 2013.
Last month, Agrisoma's GMO-free animal feed received approval by the US Food and Drug Administration.
Located just a 30-minute drive from the Canadian border and fairly close to JFK International Airport, the new facility will minimize transport time to eastern Canadian broiler chicken breeder barns.
Mallard created the High Immune Response Technology (HIR), which manages livestock health through genetic identification. This sustainable and efficient approach was designed to meet consumer expectations for healthy, non-GMO products while maintaining profitability and addressing global food demands.
Mallard was nominated for the award by Universities Canada.
The Governor General's Innovation Awards recognize and celebrate outstanding Canadian individuals, teams and organizations whose exceptional and transformative work help shape our future and positively impact our quality of life.
The Governor General will present the awards to the winners during a ceremony at Rideau Hall, in Ottawa, on May 23, 2017, at 6 p.m.
Listed below are the other winners and their citations:
Island View, New Brunswick
David Brown founded MyCodev Group in order to resolve a lack of supply of chitosan, a valuable pharmaceutical ingredient that is essential in a wide variety of medical devices and drugs. Mr. Brown's innovative technology produces chitosan directly from a fungal fermentation, a process that uses very little energy or chemicals. Mycodev Group is only four years old and is selling its chitosan to major pharmaceutical and medical device companies around the world.
Nominated by Futurpreneur Canada
Marie-Odile Junker has been a pioneer with respect to endangered Aboriginal languages in Canada, exploring how information and communication technologies can be used to preserve these languages. She has also brought together numerous speaker communities by using a participatory-action research framework that has resulted in the creation of several collaborative websites, including the Algonquian Linguistic Atlas and its online dictionary.
Nominated by Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
Patricia Lingley-Pottie and Patrick McGrath (Strongest Families Institute)
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Dr. Patricia Lingley-Pottie and Dr. Patrick McGrath are the creators of the Strongest Families Institute, a non-profit organization that delivers evidence-based programs to children, youth and families through a unique distance-delivery system. Using proprietary software technology, trained coaches are able to connect with users by phone or via the Internet, thus allowing families greater flexibility when accessing services. The programs address common mental health problems and other issues impacting overall health and well-being.
Nominated by Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation
Audra Renyi co-founded World Wide Hearing (WWH) Foundation, which uses affordable technology, market incentives and rapid training to help underprivileged people affected by hearing loss. Ms. Renyi is also the founder and CEO of earAccess, a for-profit social enterprise that aims to cut the price of hearing aids by 75 per cent. HAW uses innovative distribution models to ensure hearing aids and related services are available to those who need them the most.
Nominated by Grand Challenges Canada
Dr. Paul Santerre invented Endexo technology, a unique compound of surface-modifying macro molecules that are added to plastics during the manufacturing process of medical devices, like catheters. The special coating helps reduce clotting when the devices are used to treat patients, reducing the risk of adverse reactions and potentially deadly complications. Now being used in commercialized products in Canada, the U.S. and Europe, Endexo is helping to improve treatment outcomes for thousands of patients.
Nominated by Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation
This award is presented annually to outstanding individuals in the poultry industry and was presented on April 6th, 2017 at the London Poultry Show.
Ed Verkley, chair of the Poultry Industry Council stated, “Dr. John Summers was a leader in the poultry nutrition field. He taught and mentored many individuals who went on to work in the Ontario poultry industry, and his continuous contact with industry resulted in his research work being relevant and timely for direct application into the sector. Dr. Summers is very deserving of this award.”
Dr. Summers originally joined the University of Guelph’s Department of Poultry Science in 1956. Following the completion of his PhD from Rutgers University, New Jersey in 1962, he returned to the Department and remained there until his retirement in 1987. Dr. Summers was appointed Chair of the Department of Poultry Science in 1969.
His research focus areas and accomplishments were quite diverse, and he served as a Technical Adviser to many organizations throughout his career. Dr. Summers passed away in August 2016. His son, Dr. David Summers accepted the award on his behalf.
Griffith is an egg and crop farmer from Lambton County and a past chair of Egg Farmers of Ontario. Throughout her career as an egg farmer, she has answered thousands of consumer questions about eggs and egg farming at various events such as the Canadian National Exhibition, Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, Western Fair, local events and schools. She was also instrumental in helping to establish the Who made Your Eggs Today? Campaign.
As a past chair of FarmGate 5, Carolynne represented farmers on a global level in numerous trade negotiations around the world including meetings in Geneva, Hong Kong and Brussels.
Harry Pelissero, General Manager of Egg Farmers of Ontario, applauds Griffith for her strong agricultural advocacy through all positions. “Carolynne dedicates herself to all undertakings, and she shows her genuine passion and pride for farming with grace and quiet elegance. She consistently commits her time, knowledge and experiences to engaging industry members, students and Canadians in general.”
Lambton Federation of Agriculture spokesperson Al Langford says Griffith has been instrumental in the agriculture sector, having supported many local and provincial farm organizations in a wide variety of ways – from organizing events and serving as a board member and past Chair of Egg Farmers of Ontario, to actively engaging the Canadian public. “
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.
Benjamins noted that the sector had increased production by over five percent in 2015 and in 2016, and that the industry is still expecting further growth in 2017. The conference is hosted by the Poultry Industry Council and attracted more than 30 agricultural lending specialists from across the major financial institutions. Other presentations at the conference included reports from poultry sector partners, the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and suppliers to the Ontario poultry industry.
Benjamins, who farms near Moorefield, Ontario, noted that there were five key arguments for ongoing industry growth in the Ontario chicken sector. They include:
- Chicken protein’s alignment with current and emerging consumer tastes;
- The industry’s size and scale in the Ontario market which fosters increased market and product innovation;
- CFOs strength in supporting strategies to expand the industry’s profit pools;
- The recent introduction of a chicken industry digital network (CFO Connects) which will improve efficiencies and analytical capabilities;
- Progressive supply management leadership that is focused on transparency, accountability and leadership.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat and LinkedIn are the most important social media networks for companies to use because of their popularity and the level of engagement available on them.
“Social media creates conversation and community,” Mitchell said. “If you’re not already doing it, it’s time.”
Mitchell said consumers and industry allies are using social networks, but so are those opposed to farming, as well as elected officials and regulators, so it is important for egg companies to have a digital presence.
“Rebranding egg farming starts with mobilizing the brand of each individual egg farmer,” Mitchell said. “What are your brand attributes? What makes you unique? What benefit do you deliver that no one else does? How do you connect what matters to you to what matters to your customer?”
In order for companies to harness their digital presence, Mitchell offered some tips:
- Look for opportunities to engage on social media
- Don’t just push information, but converse with your audience
- Let the online conversation shape your content development and messaging
- Create relevant, compelling content, keeping in mind that visual content performs best
The RCC revelled 100 finalists competing for the coveted award earlier this week. These grocery products are the most impressive of all the new grocery products introduced in 2016.
Becoming a Canadian Grand Prix finalist can be a game changing experience for new products. Finalists receive direct and extensive exposure to key retailers, their buyers as well as consumers eager to try the celebrated new items getting all the attention and accolades.
To ensure products were evaluated exclusively on quality and innovation, new to this year's assessment was that all products introduced in 2016 had an equal chance of becoming finalists, regardless of when in the year they were introduced and the size of their distribution.
To become a finalist, a product needed to score at least 70% in judging.
Finalists and winners can use the Canadian Grand Prix logo on their packaging for two years. RCC also supports the awards with extensive consumer and trade support in Canadian Retailer.
Egg Creations Whole Eggs from Burnbrae Farms Ltd., was named a finalist in the food category. To view a complete list of finalists, visit: http://www.rccgrandprix.ca/content/2016-finalists
The winners of the 24th annual Canadian Grand Prix Awards will be announced at the Gala on May 31, 2017 following the second day of Retail Council of Canada's Store Conference, Canada Biggest Retail Conference.
RCC's Grocery Division represents Canada's largest grocery retailers, encompassing over 90% of all grocery sales. It is a source of information, advice and expertise on all matters affecting food retail, including food safety and recall, labelling, nutrition, health and wellness, product packaging, supply chain issues and environmental stewardship. READ MORE
The National Capital Region's Top Employers is an annual competition evaluating employers based on criteria like training and skills development, community involvement, performance management, and benefits.
EFC currently has 60 employees who work to represent more than 1,000 Canadian egg farmers and farm families.
EFC has built a reputation as a leading agriculture organization and as an employer that maintains a progressive and forward-thinking culture. Honours like the National Capital Region's Top Employer, being named by Waterstone Human Capital as one of Canada's Most Admired Corporate Cultures, and the Crystal Egg Award further echo EFC's commitment to its employees. READ MORE
This move marks the first time a major national quick service restaurant chain in the U.S. has extended an antibiotics commitment beyond boneless chicken to its chicken-on-the-bone menu items.
In addition to its antibiotics pledge, the brand has also made commitments that by the end of 2018, all core products will be free of artificial colors and flavors. Today, all KFC chicken is free of food dyes, and 100 per cent of the menu will be free of food dyes by the end of 2017, excluding beverages and third-party products. READ MORE
The letter makes reference to a number of changes, including the specific mention of “opening Canada’s protections on dairy and poultry imports.”
The letter also touches on government procurement, tax policy, intellectual property, and rules of origin for things like car parts, telecommunications and dispute resolution. It also suggests a mechanism to impose tariffs if imports flood in and threaten U.S. industry.
The U.S. Congress will now be involved in revising the list. The administration will then issue a formal notice that it wants to renegotiate the deal and spend a minimum of 90 days consulting lawmakers and industry. Formal talks with Canada and Mexico could begin this summer or fall. READ MORE.
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.
“Not that long ago we thought the major sources of uncertainty dogging Canadian agri-food trade had been resolved”, says Al Mussell, Agri-Food Economic Systems research lead and co-author of the policy note. “That is quickly being proved wrong. We had not expected US trade policy to turn protectionist, and in the interim a number of other major trade issues have arisen”.
The policy note takes stock of the range of developments in US trade policy under the new Trump Administration, the implications and alternatives for Canadian agri-food, and the consequent demands on trade and domestic agricultural policy. It highlights both bilateral shifts and multilateral issues that will reshape domestic and trade policy and require Canadian attention.
“We face a problem of breadth and depth”, says Douglas Hedley, Agri-Food Economic Systems associate and co-author of the policy note. “The sheer number of prospective trade complaints and defensive actions coming from the US could swamp our capacity to effectively analyze and mount a successful defense; this may be a strategy of the new US administration”.
Mussell says, “a retrenchment of the US from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, potential renegotiation of NAFTA, a prospective US border tax, and US trade complaints raised against Canada will drive Canada to consider alternative markets. This puts more pressure on CETA and prospective new trade agreements with Japan, China, and perhaps others to provide markets for our agri-food products. It will also require alignment between domestic agricultural policy and this new trade environment”.
“At the same time, a WTO Ministerial meeting is scheduled for later this year, in which domestic support for agriculture is likely to be a key element," Hedley adds. Canada will be pressed to advance its agenda for reduced agricultural support globally and to deal with its own sensitivities. This will further draw upon our trade policy capacity”.
The Independent Agri-Food Policy Note can be accessed at www.agrifoodecon.ca.
The Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC) has completed a three-year study and released the Dairy: Labour Market Forecast to 2025 and Poultry and Egg: Labour Market Forecast to 2025. These studies examine two of Canada’s most significant agricultural industries, which together account for 55,500 jobs, or 15 per cent of the total agricultural workforce.
Through consolidation, automation and other efficiencies, the dairy-cattle industry has shed more than a third of its workers since 2009, employing 39,900 as of 2014. However, despite this reduction in the size of the workforce, an additional 3,400 jobs went unfilled due to a lack of available domestic workers. This labour shortfall cost an estimated $71 million in lost sales.
While the labour demand is expected to continue to decline as a result of a stable market for the industry’s products, the labour supply is also predicted to shrink. As a result, the industry will continue to experience a labour shortage, with manager and owner-operator jobs at the greatest risk of going unfilled. Of the 1,100 jobs forecasted to go unfilled by 2025, 90 per cent will be jobs at the manager and owner-operator level, which will result in a skills shortage as well as a labour shortage.
For the poultry and egg industry, the research included farm operations engaged in breeding, hatching and raising poultry for meat or egg production, including chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese, pheasants, partridges and pigeons. Similar to the dairy industry, a leveling of demand for poultry and egg production and improved industry productivity will limit the demand for labour, while a shrinking supply of domestic labour will widen the industry labour gap. In 2014, 15,600 people were employed in the poultry and egg industry and an additional 250 jobs went unfilled due to a lack of domestic labour. These shortages cost the industry an estimated $6 million in lost sales. By 2025, 15,900 workers will be required, and 1,100 jobs are at risk of going unfilled. As with the dairy-cattle industry, manager and owner-operator jobs will be the most difficult to fill.
Both industries will be significantly impacted by retirement, with nearly one-third of the dairy workforce and nearly one-quarter of the poultry and egg workforce expected to retire by 2025. Finding Canadian workers with the right skills and experience is the greatest barrier to recruitment for both industries, despite the fact that they often offer attractive work conditions, including full-time, year-round employment located relatively close to urban centres. Both industries also have voluntary turnover rates that are below the sector average, which means that fewer employees choose to leave their jobs.
Unless these industries can find additional sources of labour with the right skills and experience, they will suffer from a critical gap at the managerial and leadership levels that could inhibit their ability to thrive.
To address the labour issues identified in the research, CAHRC has developed agriculture-specific human resource (HR) tools designed to support modern farm operations to manage their workforce. CAHRC offers Agri Skills, online and in-person training programs, and the Agri HR Toolkit – an online resource guide and templates to address the HR needs of any business. For agricultural organizations there are customized labour issues briefings that apply the new research to specific commodities and provinces, to explore the labour implications within their specific area.
The Dairy: Labour Market Forecast to 2025 and Poultry and Egg: Labour Market Forecast to 2025 reports can be downloaded at http://www.cahrc-ccrha.ca/agriLMI.ca. The study data was validated through industry consultations conducted Canada-wide including: 1034 surveys of employers, workers and industry stakeholders; 80 phone interviews; six focus groups for a total of more than 100 participants; and seven webinars focused on specific commodity groups with 100 participants in total.
The LMI research was funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Sectoral Initiatives Program.
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