The Round-Up: December 8th

ABP AGM — The Alberta Beef Producers AGM has wrapped up for another year and while most of the major media concentrated on the message being put forward by JBS and its plan for the XL Foods plant in Brooks, who presented at the AGM.  The leaders of the cattle industry pushed forward with the business at hand on continuing.  A lot dialogue surrounding priorities focused on the Check-off program.  Some of the delegates at the AGM say it provided some of the biggest debate during the three-day event in Calgary.

The event was filled with representatives from producers, industry and government.

Presentations during the debate (on top of the one from JBS) were made by Cargill, Land Use Secretariat, AdFarm, Canadian Cattlemen’s Association and Canada Beef Inc.

ABP Exec ABP’s 2013 Executive has been elected and it looks like this:

Doug Sawyer (Pine Lake) was re-elected Chair,

Greg Bowie (Ponoka) moved to Vice Chair

John Buckley (Cochrane) has joined the executive team as Finance Chair.

The Board of Directors will consist of Cecilie Fleming (Granum), Brian Chomlak (Beauvallon), Rick McKnight (Jarvie), Howard Bekkering (Vauxhall), Bob Lowe(Nanton), Brian Edge (Cochrane), Judy Fenton (Irma), Rob Somerville (Endiang), Chris Simpson (Bentley), John Bland (Strathmore), Larry Delver (Calgary), Mark Francis (Taber) and Roland Cailliau (Valleyview).

ABP Exec— ABP’s 2013 Executive has been elected and looks like this:

Doug Sawyer (Pine Lake) was re-elected Chair,

Greg Bowie (Ponoka) moved to Vice Chair

John Buckley (Cochrane) has joined the executive team as Finance Chair.

The Board of Directors will consist of Cecilie Fleming (Granum), Brian Chomlak (Beauvallon), Rick McKnight (Jarvie), Howard Bekkering (Vauxhall), Bob Lowe(Nanton), Brian Edge (Cochrane), Judy Fenton (Irma), Rob Somerville (Endiang), Chris Simpson (Bentley), John Bland (Strathmore), Larry Delver (Calgary), Mark Francis (Taber) and Roland Cailliau (Valleyview).

Diamond Jubilee Medals are being handed out by the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association: The recipients are:

The list includes:

Morrie Thomas, BC

Rudy Johnson, BC

Anne Dunford, AB

Arno Doerksen, AB

Ben Thorlakson, AB

Bob Prestage, AB

Brian Nilsson, AB

Chris Mills, AB

Cor Van Raay, AB

Darcy Davis, AB

Dave Plett, AB

David Andrews, AB

Dennis Laycraft, AB

Eugene Janzen, Ph.D, AB

Garnet Altwasser, AB

Hugh Lynch-Staunton, AB

John Stewart-Smith, AB

Julie Stitt, AB

Len Vogelaar, AB

Steve Morgan-Jones, AB

Mabel Hamilton, AB

Tim McAllister, Ph.D, AB

Brad Wildeman, SK

Gary L. Jones, Sk

John McKinnon, Ph.D, SK N

Neil Jahnke, SK(posthumously)

Marlin Beever, MB

Carolyn McDonell, ON

Charlie Gracey, ON Graeme Hedley, ON

Jock Buchanan-Smith, ON

Margaret Jean Hutton,ON

Stan Eby, ON

W. Ronald Usborne, ON

Henry Knight, NB

Robert Acton,NB

Charlie MacKenzie, NS

Darlene Sanford, PEI

Rural Roots Canada had a chance to catch up with some of the recipients to get their views on the industry and to reflect on their lives as ranchers.

Environment Stewardship Award: Gerry and Grant Taillieu of the Tomahawk Cattle Ranch are the 2013 winners of the Alberta Beef Producers Environmental Stewardship Award.  The two have been ranching there since 2001 along with Gerry’s wife Cheryl and daughter Amy.  One of the reasons they won the award was because they were able to nurture once over-grazed pastures back to a healthy state.    Rural Roots Canada sat down for a one on one interview with both of them and was able to learn some of the secrets of their success.  Stay tuned for that exclusive interview.

Alberta Barley AGM — There will be no change on the Alberta Barley Commission’s Board as its Chair, Matt Sawyer and Vice Chairman Trevor Petersen were re-elected to their positions.  Research Chair Richard Mueller will also stay on as a director at large after being re-elected to his position.  Rural Roots Canada will have an interview with a member of the executive on the goals for the organization coming up in the next few weeks.

Super Barley! — University of Alberta professor of soil science Scott Chang and crop scientist Anthony Aniya continue to work on building a better crop of type of barley, which will increase yields, while using less water.

The two have been working on enhancing the crop in the face of a warmer drier climate in our country.  Scott Chang tells the University of Alberta ExpressNews even though 2012 was considered an average year on the Canadian Prairies we still had a summer water deficit and it is that type of condition they are trying to work with.

The two have been working together on this project since 2006 after the severe drought of 2002.

In the latest round of test the two were joined by a former PhD student of there’s, Jing Chen.  The three planted and harvested two common types of barley plants in test plots around the province.   They then tested and analyzed the plants for genetic traits and other factors such as height, days to maturity and yield.

To read the full article in the UofA ExpressNews click here.

Growing Forward 2 –Three new federal programs under the country’s new agricultural framework ‘Growing Forward 2’ are on their way.   The latest programs are designed to streamline investments in the agriculture and agri-food sector.   They will focus on strategic initiatives in innovation, competitiveness and market development.  Federal Ag Minister Gerry Ritz made the announcement in Alberta on Friday.    The new programs (with descriptions) are as follows.

. The AgriInnovation Program will focus on investments to expand the sector’s capacity to develop and commercialize new products and technologies.
. The AgriMarketing Program will help industry improve its capacity to adopt assurance systems, such as food safety and traceability, to meet consumer and market demands. It will also support industry in maintaining and seizing new markets for their products through branding and promotional activities.
. The AgriCompetitiveness Program will target investments to help strengthen the agriculture and agri-food industry’s capacity to adapt and be profitable in domestic and global markets.

The new programs will come into effect on April 1, 2013.

The Canola Council of Canada and Canada Beef Inc. were quick to throw their support behind the new initiative. In a statement, Canola Council of Canada President Patti Miller said “These programs will allow the canola industry to partner strategically with the public sector on research and innovation.”    Canada Beef Inc President Rob Meijer says GF2  will be instrumental in Canada Beef’s ability to deliver more innovative and strategic marketing and brand initiatives.”

Glencore – Viterra— Glencore International has cleared its final hurdle in acquiring Regina based Viterra.   Glencore received notice from the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China that it had approved the deal.   The official closing of the deal is expected to happen on Monday, December 17th.  Glencore has previously announced it will keep Viterra’s headquarters in Regina.

Ontario Greenhouses— The Ontario Government is pumping funding into a first of its kind in North America greenhouse project in Chatham-Kent.  The Cedarline Greenhouses are designed to use surplus heat and carbon dioxide from a local ethanol plant to produce up to 21-million kilograms of Ontario grown tomatoes each year. This project will lower heating costs for the greenhouse by 40 per cent while increasing tomato production by five per cent.    The project will create up to 90 local jobs.

CropLife Canada Exec— CropLife Canada has its board of directors and executive committee for the coming 2013 year:

  • Chair – Kamel Beliazi, Bayer CropScience Canada
  • Past chair – Jim Wispinski, Dow AgroSciences Protection Canada Inc.
  • 1st vice chair – Ian Grant, Pioneer Hi-Bred Limited
  • 2nd vice chair – Mike McGuire, Monsanto Inc.
  • 3rd vice chair – Jay Bradshaw, Syngenta Crop
  • Member at large – Fran Burr, Cargill Limited
  • Member at large – Monte Kesslering, Viterra
  • Member at large – Al Raine, Richardson International Limited
  • Ex-officio – Lorne Hepworth, CropLife Canada

Buy Alberta— The Alberta Government has teamed up with the Alberta Food Processors Association (AEPA) and Canada Safeway to launch the ‘Buy Alberta’ campaign.  Its aim is to help Albertan identify and purchase food produced and processed in the province.  A list of the 1800 Alberta food products currently available in 86 Safeway stores across Alberta can be found at  The AEPA is hoping to bring on other grocery stores and chains in the coming months.

Olds College Centennial—  In celebration of its upcoming Centennial year, Olds College has launched its Centennial History Book, which was accompanied by the unveiling of its Centennial Coffee on Friday in Olds.  The book titled Seeding Success tells the story of Olds College from its early days in 1913, when it was called Olds College School of Agriculture and Home Economics.  The book recounts how the post-secondary school changed the course of rural education in ways that still resonate today.

Farmer Style! — The Peterson Boys from Kansas have got it right…  At least as far as a Gangnam Style parody they written and shot, which they have called “Farmer Style!”  The parody of one of this year’s biggest hits, with its catchy lyrics it promotes agriculture to a wide consumer audience.  But don’t take our word for it.. check it out yourselves, by clicking here.

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