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Ag Minister names P.E.I. commission members


June 3, 2008
By Marg Land


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June 3, 2008, Charlottetown,
P.E.I. – Agriculture Minister Neil LeClair recently announced the
members who will serve on the Commission on the Future of Agriculture
and Agri-food in Prince Edward Island.

June 3, 2008, Charlottetown, P.E.I. – Agriculture Minister Neil LeClair recently announced the members who will serve on the Commission on the Future of Agriculture and Agri-food in Prince Edward Island.

The commission has been established to articulate a vision for the agriculture and agri-food industry and recommend an implementation strategy.

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The members of the commission come from across the province, and are widely representative of the industry. They are Randall Affleck of Lower Bedeque, a dairy producer; Eddy Dykerman of Brookfield, a vegetable producer; Cynthia Frizzell of Glen Valley, a dairy producer; Steve Howatt of New Glasgow, representing agri-business; Bryan Inglis of Co-op Atlantic in Moncton, representing the retail sector; Ray Keenan of Souris, a potato producer; Wilfred Lacey of Blooming Point, a beef producer; Paul Larsen of Mt. Buchanan, a pork producer; Alan Ling of Wheatley River, a grains and oilseeds producer; Raymond Loo of Springfield, an organi c producer; Norma MacNeil of Fortune Cove, a community representative; and Darcy Rennie of Alberton, a dairy and potato producer.

The co-chairs are Rory Francis, former deputy minister of agriculture and executive director of the Prince Edward Island BioAlliance , and Dr. Ed Tyrchniewicz, an agricultural economist and associate dean of the Asper School of Business at the University of Manitoba .

“I am very pleased that such dedicated and knowledgeable individuals have agreed to serve on the commission and provide their perspectives on the future of the agriculture and agri-food industry in this province,” said Minister LeClair. “With their varied backgrounds, they will be able to provide a wide range of ideas and insights on how the industry in this province can move forward.”

The commission will be consulting widely with industry groups, individuals and the public during the course of its work through a process to be established by the commission. A background paper is now being prepared as a starting point for discussions by the commission. A draft report and implementation strategy is expected by October of this year.

Rory Francis, co-chair of the commission, said that the problems facing the industry have been well documented.

“To borrow a quote, it’s time to stop cursing the darkness and light a candle,” said Francis. “I’m optimistic that the commission can and will provide a direction for the future of this most important industry.”