From FCC Express, by Trudy Kelly Forsythe
Canada’s soybean industry now has a united voice for 27 organizations and companies involved in the sector.
Soy Canada will work collaboratively and as a collective voice to promote and advocate for the industry as well as address industry challenges and opportunities from a national perspective.
“What was needed was collaboration to help achieve better growth, to work together and not fight for little pieces,” says Mark Huston, Soy Canada’s first ever chair.
The new national organization replaces the Canadian Soybean Council, which was disbanded last year in anticipation of Soy Canada. The Canadian Soybean Council represented growers in Quebec, Manitoba and Ontario, but since the industry has seen growth in Saskatchewan, the Atlantic Provinces and Alberta, it needed to expand.
“It was not as inclusive and was from the grower perspective,” Huston says.
Soy Canada offers government a unified Canadian voice when it needs input about the sector. It also links research between established growing areas with new growing areas in the country.
“It is nice to link those to that experience, to see what’s been done and apply that to newer situations,” Huston says.
Optimism is high. The soybean industry will continue to see substantial growth in Canada.
“The soybean crop is moving up in ranks to become a notable crop grown in Canada,” Huston says, pointing out the advancements in the past few years have come without a national voice. “We’re hoping we can take this industry that has been maturing so well and transition it into something that has even more opportunities.”
Soy Canada announced its new board earlier this month. Members include representatives from the Manitoba Pulse Growers Association, La Fe´de´ration des producteurs cultures commerciales du Que´bec, the Saskatchewan Pulse Growers Association as well as crushers, commodity exporters, food-grade exporters and seed companies.
“We have a good cross section of industry and a good cross section of experience,” Huston says.