Ontario Federation of Agriculture Commentary
By Keith Currie, OFA President
The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) added another successful annual general meeting to the books this year. Leadership elections, speaker presentations, workshops and a wrap up of OFA’s 80th anniversary celebration highlighted the organization’s event.
Annual leadership elections were held. I am honoured to have been elected as OFA’s 31st president. Crispin Colvin from Middlesex was elected to a three-year director at large position, and Mark Reusser and Peggy Brekveld were elected to the two vice president positions. Drew Spoelstra also joins the new executive committee and Steve Brackenridge joins the board this year as a zone representative for Durham, Peterborough, Kawartha Lakes and Haliburton.
“Precision Agriculture” was our convention theme. Joe Dales, vice president and a founder of Farms.com opened the event with insights on how agricultural innovation has advanced our industry, and what the future will hold.
Three MPPs addressed the crowd of more than 300 farmers and industry representatives ? the Hon. Kathryn McGarry, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry, Hon. Glen Murray, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change and NDP leader Andrea Horwath provided insights on their views of agriculture’s potential.
Grassroots resolutions were deliberated during the meeting, raising member issues and concerns. Rural school closures, organizational governance, invasive species and the restoration of pits and quarries were among resolutions debated.
Meeting attendees also participated in workshops, met with exhibitors and had a chance to socialize at the annual Ontario Harvest Celebration dinner.
OFA’s 80th anniversary celebration winners were also announced at the event including the lucky winner of the trip to the 2017 World Agriculture Expo to California – wrapping up the yearlong contest. OFA’s farm gate challenge winners were also announced. Congratulations also goes out to Dundas Federation of Agriculture for their 80th anniversary display. Photos of all of these creative displays can be found on ofa.on.ca.
OFA’s annual general meeting marks an important annual industry event. We bring together grassroots members, politicians and industry representatives to address and discuss the issues and concerns impacting our 38,000 members. We also took the time to celebrate shared accomplishments, successes and milestones.