Ontario Federation of Agriculture Commentary
By Louis Roesch, OFA Director
September means show season for Ontario farmers and rural residents. While it’s busy on the farm, the agriculture industry makes time to attend events like Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show (COFS) and the International Plowing Match and Rural Expo (IPM).
The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) looks forward to meeting with our members every September at these two popular shows. There are many other events throughout the fall too, but OFA will be hosting members at our display at COFS (September 11-13) and IPM (September 18-22).
OFA’s Federation House at COFS is always a stop for members visiting the show. Here we feature select Benefit Program partners and offer show attendees a spot to sit and enjoy some refreshments on OFA. Member Service Representatives and board members will also be on hand at Federation House to talk to members about their farms, issues, concerns or highlights of the show.
New this year, OFA welcomes Honda as the latest Benefit Program partner and every farm business and individual farm member is invited to enter a draw to win a Honda ATV, generator or power tool. Members can also vote for their favourite photos in the Proud to Farm photo contest.
This year’s IPM is located near Pain Court in Chatham-Kent. The IPM is a five-day agricultural celebration that offers attendees the opportunity to visit a new part of the province every year. This event also gives local federations of agriculture the chance to showcase regional initiatives and representatives. OFA executive will also be attending the event and members are encouraged to stop by the booth to chat. Entry ballots for OFA’s Honda draw will also be accepted at the booth.
Rooted in tradition, the IPM also hosts MPPs for a day at the match. If the provincial government is sitting, the Legislature closes for one day during the IPM each year to show support for Ontario’s agri-food industry and rural communities. OFA will be following up with MPPs attending the IPM during Ontario Agriculture Week in October at Queen’s Park.
OFA is a member-driven organization and we rely on input and feedback from members to guide our lobby efforts and focus our resources. This fall, make the time to catch up with OFA at COFS or the IPM, we look forward to seeing you at the show.