Grain Growers of Canada Welcomes New Vice President and Members

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Scientists have developed a sensitive new tool for identifying the fungus that causes “wheat blast,” an emerging disease of the important grain crop. Photo: ARS

Grain Growers of Canada (GGC) is pleased to announce that four new members have joined the organization, bringing total membership to 16 national, regional and provincial grower groups. The announcement was made at the organization’s semi-annual Board meeting on Aug. 1, 2018 in Guelph, ON.

New members include:

  • Grain Farmers of Ontario (GFO)
  • Producteurs de grains du Québec (PGQ)
  • Saskatchewan Pulse Growers (SaskPulse)
  • Manitoba Oat Growers Association (MOGA)

“An expanded GGC means a stronger voice for grain farmers in Ottawa,” said GGC President, Jeff Nielsen. “Grain farmers are driving economic growth across Canada and by working together we can help deliver the conditions that Canada’s hard-working middle class grain farmers need to continue that growth.”

At the same meeting, the GGC Board elected Markus Haerle, Chair of Grain Farmers of Ontario, as the organization’s new Vice President. Mr. Haerle is replacing Art Enns of the Prairie Oat Growers Association who stepped down from the position at the meeting.

“I am delighted to take on this role and help lead GGC into the future,” said Mr. Haerle. “The need for meaningful market access, reliable risk management programs and regulations that encourage growth is shared by farmers across Canada and we can help meet those needs with a united voice in Ottawa.”

At a time when grain farmers are increasingly challenged by trade volatility, policy priorities for GGC include expanded international trade including the quick ratification of CPTPP, the successful implementation of the Transportation Modernization Act, and a comprehensive review of business risk management programming that delivers programs that work for farmers.

Grain Growers of Canada provides a strong national voice for over 65,000 active and successful grain, oilseed and pulse producers through its 16 provincial, regional and national grower groups. Our mission and mandate are to pursue a policy environment that maximizes global competitiveness and to influence federal policy on behalf of independent Canadian grain farmers and their associations.

Grain Grading and Variety Designation Changes come into Effect on August 1

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The Canadian Grain Commission would like to remind grain producers and industry of changes to the Official Grain Grading Guide and variety designation lists coming into effect on August 1, 2018.

Beginning in the 2018-19 crop year, individual official standard samples will be used to assess frost, heat stress and mildew damage in western Canadian wheat. An updated version of the Official Grain Grading Guide will be available on the Canadian Grain Commission’s website on August 1, 2018.

New variety designation lists will also come into effect on August 1, 2018. Following a 3 year transition period, 25 varieties of Canada Western Red Spring and 4 varieties of Canada Prairie Spring Red wheat that do not meet the revised quality parameters for their current classes will be reassigned to the Canada Northern Hard Red class. These changes will help maintain Canada’s reputation as a consistent supplier of high quality milling wheat and ensure Canadian producers are able to realize the benefits of growing premium classes.

Quick facts

  • Under the Canada Grain Act, the Canadian Grain Commission is responsible for establishing and maintaining Canada’s grain grading system.
  • As the federal agency responsible for ensuring grain quality, the Canadian Grain Commission’s role is to ensure that varieties assigned to wheat classes reflect the end-use functionality needs of buyers of Canadian grain.

Grain Farmers Need to be Prepared for August 1 Wheat Reclassification

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The Saskatchewan Wheat Development Commission (Sask Wheat), the Alberta Wheat Commission (AWC) and the Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers Association (MWBGA) are asking Prairie grain farmers to be prepared for the upcoming reclassification of 29 wheat varieties.

On August 1, 2018, 25 varieties of wheat currently classified as Canada Western Red Spring (CWRS) and four varieties currently classified as Canada Prairie Spring Red (CPSR) will be reclassified into the Canada Northern Hard Red (CNHR) class.

“We want farmers to have a plan to market any remaining wheat that is transitioning to a new class on August 1,” says Sask Wheat Chair Laura Reiter. “It is important farmers know what they have in their bins and that they communicate with their local elevator or buyers soon to make sure they are able to maximize the return on these varieties.”

In February 2015, the Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) announced the Canadian wheat class modernization process. The process was undertaken to maintain the quality, enhance the consistency and support the marketability of Canadian wheat. In December 2015, the CGC announced the creation of the CNHR and Canada Western Special Purpose wheat classes.

Many producers have been preparing over the last two years by transitioning to varieties not designated for reclassification. However, according to the CGC’s 2017 Grain Varieties by Acreage Insured Report, 491,108 acres of wheat varieties which are designated for the CNHR class on August 1, including Harvest, Lillian and Unity, were still grown in Western Canada in 2017.

“The CGC is not allowing any grace period for producers after the July 31st deadline,” said Kevin Bender, AWC Chair. “We therefore think it’s important that farmers negotiate the best possible terms for the varieties being reclassified and be aware that grain companies will have until December 31, 2018 to ship any remaining stocks from the system as CWRS and CPSR.”

Producers who have a contracted delivery date after August 1 for a transitioning variety should contact their elevator or grain buyer as soon as possible to ensure their grain will be accepted as CWRS or CPSR. Wheat varieties classified as CNHR are expected to sell at a discount to the CWRS and CPSR classes.

“The MWBGA is happy to partner with our fellow wheat organizations in communicating to Western Canadian producers the importance of making a transition plan,” says Fred Greig, MWBGA Chair. “Maintaining the quality of the CWRS class is important to Canada’s reputation and will benefit farmers. While the reclassified varieties are still registered and can be grown, we strongly recommend that farmers arrange their marketing options for these varieties prior to future plantings.”

For more information on the reclassification, please go to the CGC website at grainscanada.gc.ca.

Source: Alberta Wheat