February 2, 2017
For Immediate Release
APAS Welcomes New Commissioners to CGC
Regina: The Agricultural Producer’s Association of Saskatchewan (APAS) looks forward to working with Patti Miller, Doug Chorney and Lonny McKague as Commissioners of the Canadian Grain Commission whose term begins on February 13.
“As new Commissioners, they bring their own expertise to their respective positions and collectively APAS believes they can be effective in representing farmers and the industry,” says Todd Lewis, President of APAS. “Patti has worked on many files in AAFC and as President of the Canola Council and she understands many of the ag and trade issues. Doug and Lonny are farmers, have led organizations at the provincial and national levels, understand shortlines, and know the issues they and other farmers face on the prairies. I believe the three Commissioners complement each other very well and can be very effective.”
The Canadian Grain Commission continues to have a valuable role to ensure that domestic and international customers receive their products in a timely, safe manner for food or feed use. For farmers, the Commission’s ability to provide an impartial grade for grain, resolve grading disputes, providing railway access to producer car shippers, offsetting payment failure by grain buyers and dealers and other Commission functions are critical to ensure farmers receive the fair value for product they produce and ship to buyers.
“The current and future challenges the Grain Commission faces need to be viewed from many perspectives” says Lewis, “and we believe the individual strengths of the new Commissioners, along with farmer and industry input, can continue to ensure our products are sought after by customers, are delivered on time, arrive safely and that farmers receive full value for their product.”
Lewis also noted that APAS is prepared to work with the Commissioners in finding a solution to the excess user fee surplus that the CGC has collected since the 2013 crop year.
“User fees need to be reduced and reviewed more frequently as increasingly larger grain volumes are exported every year,” says Lewis. “APAS is also prepared to work with the CGC to find the best option for the surplus such as establishing a payment protection fund to provide producers with transparent and cost effective protection against payment default. We need to find a practical, long-term, cost-effective method to provide maximum benefit to all grain producers. This may be one opportunity to provide more value with no or limited additional cost.”
APAS is Saskatchewan’s general farm organization formed to provide farmers and ranchers with a democratically elected, grassroots, non-partisan, producer organization based on rural municipal boundaries. As the united voice of thousands of agricultural producers in Saskatchewan, we strive to represent the views of a wide variety of agricultural stakeholders in order to form comprehensive policies that can benefit all sectors of society.
For more information, please call APAS President Todd Lewis @ 306-537-6561