Five commodity groups in Manitoba voted to amalgamate as the Manitoba Crop Alliance
Following voting results from annual general and special meetings by five commodity organizations in Manitoba on Feb. 12 and 13, the groups will become the Manitoba Crop Alliance.
The five groups involved are the National Sunflower Association of Canada, the Manitoba Corn Growers Association, Winter Cereals Manitoba, Inc., the Manitoba Flax Growers Association and the Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers Association (MWBGA).
“The votes at each of the meetings were supportive and that meant … we are moving forward with amalgamation with the hopes the Manitoba Crop Alliance will be operational by August 1,” said Pam Derocquigny, the general manager with the MWBGA.
This amalgamation has been in the works for several years. In 2015, the commodity groups commissioned a study to review how they could collaborate and become more efficient working together, Derocquigny told Farms.com.
“From that point, directors from the various commodity organizations started to talk about making it more formal as opposed to just collaborating,” she said. “There was a recognition that some of these groups were serving the same members because farmers grow multiple crops.”
In 2017, the more formal process of amalgamating started when the groups began developing a proposal for the governing structure, funding, research and market development.
In February of this year, the five groups voted. After 165 ballots were cast, a two-thirds majority voted in favour of amalgamating.
“It wasn't just a simple majority; two-thirds of members had to approve it. And, in order for it to go through, all five groups had to be supportive of it,” said Derocquigny.
The next steps are already in motion. Representatives of the new organization have put in their petition to the Manitoba Farm Products Marketing Council for their designation regulation that allows the alliance to collect check offs on the grains that fall under the new organization. This money will fund research and variety development.
There is also an interim board already appointed from the five commodity groups. This process had to be done prior to the voting as the groups needed to amalgamate into a legally incorporated entity, Derocquigny said.
The alliance plans to hold elections in the fall after everything is in place. Producers who are interested in learning more about the Manitoba Crop Alliance and its structure can visit the group’s website.
PointImages/iStock/Getty Images Plus photo