AIC Notes Top          Issue 2012-02    January 12, 2012 
In This Issue
Canadian Journal of Soil Science - Land Reclamation Special Issue
Brinkman: Canadian Farmers "Over Capitalized" and "Very Vulnerable"
Alberta Fields Host Prairies' First Glyphosate-Resistant Weed
Crop Week: Prairie Wheat Marketing Inconsistent in Early Days
Credit Farmers for GHG Reductions
Leading-Edge Dairy Research Facility Planned at University of Guelph
Agriculture Struggles to Attract Youth, Minister Says
Ag Shouldn't be Harmed by Climate Change
Antibiotics for Livestock Vital to Feed World - OIE
Newly Formed Plants Could Lead to Improved Crop Fertility
Harper Names Canola Council Chief to Senate
CFIA Consultation: Multi-Year Regulatory Modernization Plan
Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food
Coming Events

Canadian Journal of Soil Science - Land Reclamation Special Issue 


The Canadian Journal of Soil Science, Volume 92, No. 1 is now available online.


This is a special issue on land reclamation covering a diverse range of topics, including:

  • A proposed classification for human disturbed soils (for inclusion in the next edition of the Canadian System of Soil Classification);
  •  a review of the use of organic amendments in soil reclamation;
  •  the growing focus on the role of regulators in environmental stewardship, management and development;
  •  large scale mine site and oil sands reclamation; and
  • urban brown field growth, urban land degradation and the challenges and opportunities of using land for bioenergy crops.



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Brinkman: Canadian Farmers "Over Capitalized" and "Very Vulnerable"


Canadian farmers have to get their debt to income ratio "back in sync" with U.S. farmers, the University of Guelph Professor Emeritus of Agricultural and Resource Economics told NSFA delegates.


Ontario farmers have a 16-1 debt to income ratio. That means to restore equilibrium with U.S. farmers they would have to increase by 16 times their farm income. "That isn't going to happen."


Dr. Brinkman observed in Nova Scotia the debt to income ratio for farmers is even higher than in Ontario. "We are over-capitalized."


He also believed: "We are getting very vulnerable."


The reason the Canadian farm economy hasn't crashed yet is because interest rates are very low.


Moreover, U.S. producers are not as vulnerable to reductions in government support, Dr. Brinkman said. From 2006-2010, 128 per cent of Canadian net farm income came from net government payments. In the same time period, just 26 per cent of net U.S. farm income originated from its government payments.


He saw a very strong parallel between Canadian farm debt and the U.S. housing and mortgage markets before the crash in 2008 - the big short" - with excessive leveraging and credit, excessive capitalization and excessive debt relative to income.


"Are we running a big short in Canadian agriculture? That is the big question."


Being a good producer is no longer sufficient, a farmer must also know his cost of production for all of his commodities, be a good marketer and practice extreme costs control while avoiding over-capitalization, he said. "The good news is we probably have 3-5 years to do something about these factors before interest rates rise 3-4 per cent. Watch interest rates because they are the single most critical thing to affect Canadian agriculture in the next few years."


It is also critical for farmers to calculate the impact of rising interest rates on their farms. "Practice survival management, if necessary. When land becomes available ask yourself: Can I make it pay? If it doesn't; say nay."


Dr. Brinkman also strongly advised farmers to avoid interest-only payment loans. "It is the worst policy we have now. If you can only pay the interest on the loan now; you won't be able to (pay) if interest rates increase."


He recommended: "Build equity. My life-long ambition is to pay $1-million in capital gains tax."


Farm relocation is another way to manage assets by moving the operation from an area with high land values to one of lower land prices. "You can pay off your debt and buy a new farm clear of debt."


Dr. Brinkman warned the farm land price bubble "is getting bigger and, in time, we may see it burst."

In 1980 there was a crunch in agriculture with high interest rates; but now it is high farm debt. He sees the critical problem as not being the demand for commodities; but the price farmers are paying for land having made their costs too high. "We over-capitalized our assets."


Farmers are their own worst enemies by competing against each other for land. He said instead, they should be building equity in the other assets in their operations, not on more land. "If you are paying $12,000 an acre for corn land in Ontario; you are in trouble."


It is not just the price of land: It is the price of land relative to the income it generates. "The price of land doesn't mean anything... In the U.S. farmers have a mentality: 'Can I make the land pay?''"


Total Canadian farm income has remained static for the last 30 years, and Dr. Brinkman is concerned there is not enough farm income to pay off the debt burden., January 9, 2012


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Alberta Fields Host Prairies' First Glyphosate-Resistant Weed 

Federal ag researchers have found the Prairies' first confirmed case of glyphosate-resistant weeds in populations of kochia in three chem-fallow fields in southern Alberta.


Weed scientists at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada on Wednesday confirmed that kochia plants taken from the fields have developed resistance to the broad-spectrum Group 9 herbicide, the active ingredient in Roundup, Touchdown, Credit, Polaris, Vantage Plus and many other weed killers.


Unlike some previous findings of glyphosate resistance in Ontario, however, the fields in question don't appear to have been used regularly to grow glyphosate-tolerant crops, according to Canada's best-known glyphosate manufacturer.


AAFC scientists began this specific investigation last summer in the three fields, where "we saw little-to-no kochia control after (the fields received) multiple applications of glyphosate," weed scientist Bob Blackshaw said in a release Wednesday from Monsanto, maker of Roundup and developer of the Genuity Roundup Ready lines of glyphosate-tolerant crops.


The initial findings "prompted us to do further work through the fall and winter that involved collecting samples of seed and completing the necessary grow-out and spraying of plants to confirm resistance," said Blackshaw, who works for AAFC at Lethbridge.


Blackshaw and fellow AAFC weed researcher Hugh Beckie completed tests on seed samples collected from the fields to validate their findings, testing the survival of the kochia plants at increasing rates of glyphosate, as per standard practice to confirm herbicide resistance, Monsanto said.




"What makes this particular case different from some of the previous situations where glyphosate resistance has been confirmed, is that it does not appear to have developed in a Roundup Ready cropping system," Monsanto said.


The suspected weed species, the company said, was found in fields where the "typical crop rotation... does not appear to have included regular use of Roundup Ready crops."


Kochia becomes the third weed species in which populations of plants in Canada have been confirmed as glyphosate-resistant. Giant ragweed was confirmed in 2009 and Canada fleabane was confirmed in 2011, both in southwestern Ontario.


Further south, glyphosate-resistant kochia has previously been confirmed in Colorado, Kansas and Nebraska, with suspected cases in South Dakota and the border states of North Dakota and Montana, Monsanto said Wednesday.


AAFC's weed scientists are "continuing their work" on this particular site, the company said. For its part, Winnipeg-based Monsanto Canada said it's also "supporting the AAFC research effort, which includes providing recommendations to help farmers manage glyphosate-resistant weeds once they are identified and confirmed."


"If it spreads"


"We have been fortunate in Canada in that this is not a large-scale weed management issue," Sean Dilk, technology development manager in Monsanto Canada's crop protection division, said in the company's release. "But we have increased communication around this topic and we speak to farmers about this more often to lessen the likelihood of resistant weeds developing."


Resistance evolves after a weed population has been subjected to intense selection pressure in the form of a repeated use of a single herbicide, without adequate incorporation of "cultural weed management options," Monsanto said. The herbicide in question then controls all the susceptible weeds, leaving only resistant weeds to reproduce.


"Our history tells us that farmers can, and are, effectively managing the situation with good agronomic practices such as using tank mixes and/or cultural weed control methods," Dilk said.

However, he warned, this particular finding "could present new challenges if it spreads because of the prevalence of Roundup Ready canola and Roundup Ready sugarbeets in this region."


Roundup herbicides and Roundup Ready crops have continued to be used in areas where glyphosate resistance has occurred in the past, he noted, "and we have some very knowledgeable people looking into this issue. I am confident in our ability to present good options to the growers in the region."


Alberta Farm Express, January 11, 2012


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Crop Week: Prairie Wheat Marketing Inconsistent in Early Days 


The new open markets for wheat and durum in Western Canada are still sorting themselves out in the early weeks following the passage of a bill ending the long-standing Canadian Wheat Board single desk for marketing those crops.


Speaking to a meeting of the Saskatchewan Winter Cereals Development Commission during Crop Week in Saskatoon, Brenda Tjaden Lepp of FarmLink Marketing Solutions said the open market could easily take a number of months, if not years, to level out, with more inconsistencies likely in the short term.


Following the passage of Bill C-18 in mid-December, most of the major grain companies started to test the waters with new-crop pricing options. While a transparent open market is expected to be beneficial for farmers in the long run, Tjaden Lepp said the current new-crop prices were lacking consistency.


There were wide discrepancies from company to company in terms of protein and grade spreads, she said, with little patterns to be found in the bids from one delivery point to the next.


The newness of the market aside, wheat pricing may also be more inconsistent compared to crops such as canola due to the increased number of factors end-users are looking for.


"The message is simple: you shop it around," said Tjaden Lepp, noting that in the current environment, one grain company may be offering the same price for a lower-quality wheat than the company down the road.


Going forward, Tjaden Lepp highlighted a number of challenges for marketing wheat under the new system.


It still remained to be seen how the new voluntary CWB will operate alongside the grain companies, she said. A voluntary CWB, she estimated, could continue to sell 20-30 per cent of the western Canadian wheat crop, which means agreements will need to be put in place with the handling companies.


The launch of new wheat and durum futures at ICE Futures Canada on Jan. 23 could help in determining the price direction for wheat and durum in Western Canada.


Tjaden Lepp said it remains to be seen if the ICE contracts will see enough liquidity, or if Canadian wheat will find itself priced off the Minneapolis futures.


Phil Franz-Warkentin, Country Guide, January 9, 2012


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Credit Farmers for GHG Reductions 

This period typically is a time of reflection, and that's certainly the case as we look back at the year in agriculture.


It's been a busy year on several fronts, but of particular interest to the Saskatchewan Soil Conservation Association is the continued effort of the provincial government to develop a greenhouse gas offset market. This follows the adoption in May 2010 of the Management and Reduction of Greenhouse Gases and Adaptation to Climate Change Act.


Although recently overshadowed by the economic crisis gripping the world, climate change continues to be a topic of interest for Canadians. What the majority of people don't realize is that farmers in Western Canada can be part of the solution to this global problem.


SSCA welcomes including in these ongoing discussions the GHG offsets generated from biological sequestration. Good soil management practices, including the reduction of summerfallow and tillage intensity, removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and stores it as carbon. Farmers have been adopting reduced tillage for years for myriad reasons; reduced GHG emissions are another benefit of improved soil practices.


The result of these improved practices is that between 1990 and 2008, the net annual emissions from farming in Saskatchewan have been negative. Agriculture reduced and removed more CO2 than it emitted in those years.


The uptake of improved soil management practices has continued over the past decade, putting even more CO2 "in the bank." Agriculture is doing its part to address climate change.


Continued encouragement of sound practices within agriculture requires developing a market that actually sees farmers receive the value from the reduction and removal GHG emissions as a result of their management decisions. Farmers make those decisions for a host of reasons, but one of the benefits should be a financial incentive for helping to address climate change.


The provincial government is on the right path by addressing the climate change issue in part through the use of offsets, particularly biologically based offsets that provide multiple benefits. But if it wants farm operators to participate in the offset market, then more of the value associated with it must be returned to them.

Doyle Wiebe, Saskatchewan Soil Conservation Association, in The StarPhoenix, January 6, 2012


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Leading-Edge Dairy Research Facility Planned at University of Guelph 

A new livestock research centre intended to model sustainable animal agriculture systems is being planned by the University of Guelph, the provincial government and the Ontario dairy industry.


The Research and Innovation Centre, Dairy Phase, will be built at the current site of Elora Research Station in Elora, Ont., one of the Agricultural Research Institute of Ontario (ARIO) facilities operated by U of G under its partnership agreement with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA).


Future phases of the project may include research facilities for swine, poultry and beef.


"This world-class facility will position Ontario at the forefront of innovation and technology development in agri-food, particularly for livestock research," said Rich Moccia, U of G's associate vice-president (strategic partnerships).


"It's an excellent example of the power of university, government and industry collaboration."


Ted McMeekin, minister of agriculture, food and rural affairs, added: "This research and innovation centre shows how, working together, partners can build a strong future for Ontario agriculture and Ontario's economy."


Bill Emmott, chair of the Dairy Farmers of Ontario, said his group's involvement "represents a firm commitment to collaborative research with our industry, government and university partners."


Stewart Cressman, ARIO chairman, added: "We are the envy of other jurisdictions with our partnerships - modernizing our research infrastructure with partners from government, the University of Guelph and industry is the only way we can work towards a prosperous, productive economy fuelled by the quality foods that our innovations yield."


Agri-food is among the most important economic drivers in Ontario today, contributing $33 billion to the province's gross domestic product and sustaining more than 700,000 jobs. The dairy industry alone contributes $5.5 billion to Canada's GDP and 73,000 jobs.


Construction of the first phase of the new complex, involving both new facilities and renovations, is expected to begin later this year.


Besides providing cutting-edge technologies and infrastructure, the complex will bring together scientists from many disciplines to study rural/urban environmental, social and economic issues.


Research and innovation will cover human health; food safety; animal welfare, productivity and reproduction; new products and procedures; and bio-engineering and renewable energy. The centre will use resources such as feed, water and energy more efficiently, and will spur development of new "rural knowledge centres" for bio-based products and green technologies.


The project is expected to provide 100 short-term construction jobs and 25 full-time positions at the Elora station.


University of Guelph News Release, January 11, 2012



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Agriculture Struggles to Attract Youth, Minister Says 


With strong commodity prices, Alberta's agriculture industry is back in the black.


Now, it's the colour grey - as in aging farmers - that worries Agriculture Minister Evan Berger.


"The challenge right now for agriculture is attracting youth," Berger told the annual general meeting of Wild Rose Agricultural Producers, an Alberta farm group, on Wednesday.


"Today more than ever, we have an opportunity, with prices not at a high but at a new benchmark, we need to spread this message to encourage youth to return and enter into our industry."


One problem keeping young people away is a media-driven perception of farming as an unsophisticated, sunset industry beset with problems, Berger said.


"If the only message that our youth get is that everything's bad, don't think they're coming home. They're going to the job in town where they can work five days a week with weekends off. We need to encourage them to come back to our lifestyle.


"We're struggling to engage these youth, and without them, our industry won't survive. Who else is going to buy us out and move on?" asked Berger, who also farms near Nanton.


The average age of Alberta farmers and ranchers is 51. Across Canada, the average age of producers is 52. The average U.S. farmer is 57.


The provincial government is preparing to roll out initiatives aimed at attracting more young people to farming, Berger told reporters.


"Stay tuned. We'll have some announcements soon on bringing youth in through summit-type meetings ... where we want them working with industry partners right through the chain and have their input into these discussions."


Wild Rose president Humphrey Banack said one of the biggest hurdles potential young farmers face is financial and the return on capital investment is slower than for other business people.


"The amount of capital required to enter agriculture these days is huge," Banack said.


"We have looked at options where we can have an existing, retiring producer foster through both mentorship and moving of assets to the next generation."


Bill Mah,, January 11, 2012


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Ag Shouldn't be Harmed by Climate Change 

Record yields for staple crops in the United States and globally in recent years seem to contradict fears that agriculture will be negatively affected by increasing climate temperatures, according to James Taylor, senior fellow for the Heartland Institute and managing editor of Environment and Climate News. Taylor spoke at an issues conference at the American Farm Bureau Federation's 93rd Annual Meeting.


Beyond debating the issue of whether global climate change is actually taking place and whom is to blame, Taylor addressed the issue of any potential impacts on agriculture and what effect any legislation or regulation could have.


"Since 2007 we've seen record yields in production per acre in edible beans, cotton, alfalfa, sweet potatoes, canola, corn, hops, rice, wheat and more," said Taylor. "This is a long-term trend, and it applies globally, too, as global grain harvests have nearly tripled since 1961.

Climate is not the only factor, but even if we accept global warming as a problem, it's clearly not inhibiting crop production."


According to data presented by Taylor, computer models have incorrectly accounted for certain climate patterns over recent decades, and data has shown fewer and less severe periods of drought and less severe flooding on a global scale. Taylor conceded that there would certainly be regional exceptions, but on a larger scale, climate patterns could prove to be quite suitable for agriculture.


Referencing research done by the International Journal of Climatology, Taylor explained that increases in precipitation would occur more frequently during the hotter and drier seasons of the year-rather than during the spring-thus avoiding the time of year more prone to flooding.


While potential increases in temperature were not believed to be detrimental to crops, Taylor suggested that the greater threat to agriculture could come in the form of federal or state regulations regarding livestock production.


Ag Professional, January 10, 2012


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Antibiotics for Livestock Vital to Feed World - OIE 

The world body in charge of fighting animal diseases called for action against widespread abuse of antibiotics in livestock farming, which leads to drug-resistant bacteria, but warned on Wednesday that a ban would leave the world short of protein. 


"The use of antibiotics is today essential to ensure sufficient animal production to feed the planet. Without antibiotics there would supply problems of animal protein for the human population," Bernard Vallat, director of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) told a news conference.

Antibiotics are widely used in cattle, pigs and poultry to prevent or cure diseases and in many regions to boost output as several of them have side-effects that increase growth speed.
Scientists say overuse of antibiotics can allow resistant strains of bacteria to become dominant, undermining the efficacy of the drugs.

The debate over the impact of the use of antibiotics in animal husbandry has intensified in recent weeks with several countries, including the United States and Germany, taking or considering new measures to control it.

Vallat called for better training of veterinarians worldwide and for a fight against the illegal trade in antibiotics, which is widespread in poor countries and on the internet, to avoid misuse of antibiotics in rearing livestock.

"If you take the 100 poorest countries that take no precaution on this matter, we can see antibiotics passed around just like candies, without prescription," he said, noting that this was true for both human and animal antibiotics.

Livestock industry groups argue that using antibiotics in animals keeps them healthy and does not have a direct link to development of resistant strains of bacteria affecting humans.

Sybille de La Hamaide, Reuters, in BITES-L, January 11, 2012


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Newly Formed Plants Could Lead to Improved Crop Fertility 


A new University of Florida study shows genomes of a recently formed plant species to be highly unstable, a phenomenon that may have far-reaching evolutionary consequences.


Published online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the study is the first to document chromosomal variation in natural populations of a recently formed plant species following whole genome doubling, or polyploidy. Because many agricultural crops are young polyploids, the data may be used to develop plants with higher fertility and yields. Polyploid crops include wheat, corn, coffee, apples, broccoli and some rice species.


"It could be occurring in other polyploids, but this sort of methodology just hasn't been applied to many plant species," said study co-author Pam Soltis, distinguished professor and curator of molecular systematics and evolutionary genetics at the Florida Museum of Natural History on the UF campus. "So it may be that lots of polyploids -- including our crops -- may not be perfect additive combinations of the two parents, but instead have more chromosomes from one parent or the other."


Researchers analyzed about 70 Tragopogon miscellus plants, a species in the daisy family that originated in the northwestern U.S. about 80 years ago. The new species formed naturally when two plants introduced from Europe mated to produce a hybrid offspring, and hybridization was followed by polyploidy.


Using a technique called "chromosome painting" to observe the plants' DNA, UF postdoctoral researcher and lead author Michael Chester discovered that while whole genome doubling initially results in a new species containing 12 chromosomes from each parent, numbers subsequently vary among many plants.


The paints are made by attaching different dyes to DNA of the two parent species. Once the dye is applied, there is a match between the DNA of the paint and of the chromosome. Under a microscope, the chromosomes appear in one color or the other (red vs. green) depending on the parent from which they originated. Sometimes chromosomes are a patchwork of both colors because DNA from the two parents has been swapped as a result of chromosomal rearrangements.


"One of the things that makes this so amazing is that where we expected to see 12 chromosomes from each parent (the polyploid has 24 chromosomes), it turns out there aren't 12 and 12, there are 11 from one parent and 13 from the other, or 10 and 14," Soltis said. "We're hoping through some ongoing studies to be able to link these results with the occurrence of another interesting phenomenon -- the loss of genes -- and also see what effect these changes have on the way the plants grow and perform."


The polyploid's two parent species, Tragopogon dubius and Tragopogon pratensis, were introduced to the U.S. in the 1920s. Because its flower only blooms for a few hours in the morning, Tragopogon miscellus is often referred to as "John-go-to-bed-at-noon," and its common name is goatsbeard. It looks like a daisy except for being yellow in color.


"People have looked at these chromosomes before, but until you could apply these beautiful painting techniques, you couldn't tell which parent they each came from," Soltis said.


Of the six populations examined from Washington and Idaho, 69 percent of the plants showed a deviation from the expected 12 and 12 chromosome pattern.


"In order for most plants to be able to interbreed successfully, their chromosomes need to match up," Chester said. "That doesn't necessarily happen when you don't have equal numbers, so there may be some chromosomal barriers to fertility that develop as a result of this sort of chromosomal variation. This mechanism may also explain low fertility in other plants, such as crops. This is something we are looking into with Tragopogon."


The two-year study was funded by the National Science Foundation. Other co-authors include Doug Soltis, a distinguished professor in UF's biology department, UF undergraduate biology student Joseph Gallagher and Ana Veruska Cruz da Silva of Embrapa Tabuleiros Costeiros in Brazil and the Florida Museum.


"Among all of the processes that generate biological diversity in the plant kingdom, genome doubling, or polyploidy, is among the most prevalent and important," said Jonathan Wendel, professor and chairman of the department of ecology, evolution, and organismal biology at Iowa State University, in an email. "This is an area that is receiving international focus and research attention, but the system Pam and Doug Soltis are working on is unique."


Story Source:

The above story is reprinted from materials provided by University of Florida. The original article was written by Danielle Torrent.

University of Florida (2012, January 7). Newly formed plants could lead to improved crop fertility. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 11, 2012, from­ /releases/2012/01/120107151855.htm 


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Harper Names Canola Council Chief to Senate 

The organization representing Canada's canola industry has lost its president to Canada's Senate.


Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Friday announced the appointment, effective immediately, of JoAnne Buth as one of seven new members of Parliament's upper chamber. Buth takes the seat previously held by Sharon Carstairs as one of Manitoba's representatives in the Senate.


Buth replaced Barb Isman as president of the Winnipeg-based canola organization in 2007, having previously served as the council's vice-president.


Buth came to the ag field with a B.Sc. in biology from the University of Winnipeg and a M.Sc. in entomology from the University of Manitoba.


Before joining the council, Buth had worked at Carman, Man. as a manager and weed management specialist at the soils and crops branch of Manitoba's agriculture department.


Buth's resume in agriculture also includes stints as a research and development manager with DowElanco Canada and as an information officer for the federal agriculture department's research station in Winnipeg.


The Canola Council hasn't yet said which, if any, of its three current vice-presidents -- Jason Anderson, Jim Everson and Cory McArthur -- would replace Buth or serve as interim president. Calls to the council office were not immediately returned Friday.


As the chief executive at the council, Buth has been the point person for its "Growing Great 2015" initiative, launched in 2007 and aimed at increasing Canada's canola production to 15 million tonnes per year, from its 2006 level of nine million.


The initiative also aims to boost canola seed exports and Canada's domestic canola crush to 7.5 million tonnes each, and to raise the ratio of "classic" to "designer" canola varieties grown in Canada from 90:10 to 75:25.


"More democratic"


"All appointees have distinguished themselves in their fields of endeavour and in their service to fellow citizens," Harper said in a release Friday.


The new appointees, Harper's office said, have "pledged to support the government in its efforts to make the Senate more democratic and accountable, including legislation to limit the term lengths of senators and encouraging the provinces and territories to hold elections for Senate nominees."


Carstairs, a former Manitoba provincial Liberal leader named to the Senate by then-prime minister Jean Chretien in 1994, had served as government leader in the upper chamber from 2001 to 2003. She retired from the Senate in October 2011, about six years ahead of her mandatory retirement date.


The six other senators named Friday include:

- Norman Doyle, a Newfoundland businessman and former Progressive Conservative MP (1997-2008);

- Ghislain Maltais, a former Quebec MNA (1983-94) and director of the federal Conservative Party in Quebec since 2009;

- Asha Seth, a Toronto obstetrician and gynaecologist who founded the NIMDAC Foundation, a fundraising organization for health-related charities;

- Alberta's elected senator-in-waiting, Edmonton nurse Betty Unger, a founder of nursing services company Medico Mobile and a defeated Canadian Alliance candidate (2000);

- Vernon White, a former Ottawa police chief and RCMP assistant commissioner; and

- Jean-Guy Dagenais, a former Surete du Quebec officer, president of the Association des policieres et policiers provinciaux du Quebec and defeated Conservative candidate (2011).


Country Guide, January 6, 2012 


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CFIA Consultation: Multi-Year Regulatory Modernization Plan 

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has begun a systematic review of its regulatory frameworks to improve consistency and reduce complexity in regulation. As part of this process, the CFIA will be consulting with stakeholders for a 60-day period beginning December 22, 2011.


Stakeholders can provide feedback and perspective on the CFIA's multi-year plan and path forward for regulatory modernization:


Discussion Paper: Multi-Year Regulatory Modernization Plan 

Questions and Answers



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Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food


The House of Commons and the Committee are on break until January 30, 2012. 


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Coming Events


Irrigated Crop Production Update Conference, Lethbridge, January 31 -February 1, 2012 


Conference Board of Canada Canadian Food Summit, Toronto, February 7-8, 2012 


Canadian Organic Science Conference, Winnipeg, Manitoba, February 21-23, 2012 


6th Annual Growing the Margins: Rural Green Energy Conference and Exhibition and 4th Annual Canadian Farm and Food Biogas Conference and Exhibition, London, Ontario, March 5-7, 2012


Canadian Society of Soil Science and Association Québécoise de Spécialistes en Sciences du Sol Joint Conference, Lac Beauport, Quebec, June 3-7, 2012


Joint Annual Meeting of ADSA - AMPA - ASAS - Canadian Society of Animal Science - WSASAS, Phoenix, Arizona, July 15-19, 2012


Joint Annual Meeting of the Canadian Society of Agronomy, Certified Crop Advisors and Canadian Society for Horticultural Science, Saskatoon, July 16-19, 2012

5th World Congress of Agronomists and Agrologists, Quebec City, September 17-21, 2012 


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AIC LogoAIC Notes is a weekly update provided as a service for AIC members.  Please do not circulate or post.  The content of AIC Notes does not represent official positions, opinions or support of AIC or its members. 

Frances Rodenburg, Editor