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New executive director at Agri-food Management Institute

October 30, 2015  By Agri-food Management Institute

October 30, 2015, Guelph, Ont – The Agri-food Management Institute (AMI) recently announced that Alison Robertson is the organization’s new executive director.

“We think that Alison will be a great fit, with her extensive experience and connections in the industry,” said Doug Alexander, chair of the board for AMI. “Under her leadership, we look forward to giving farmers and food processors more and better ways to help them succeed in business.”

AMI promotes new ways of thinking about agribusiness management. It develops business management tools, information, resources, and training for agri-food and agri-based producers, processors, and their business advisors. AMI also creates links to existing resources and conducts research for the industry.

“I will be a champion for AMI,” Alison said. “I want to get out there with our stakeholders, engage with them, listen to what they’re looking for, and help meet their needs.”

Alison comes to the job after working as program manager for the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers’ Association (OFVGA) for 11 years. There, she helped introduce and run an innovative program that put more fresh fruits and vegetable snacks into the hands and stomachs of school children in northern Ontario. The program continues to be successful in helping improve the health of 38,000 kids in 191 schools. It’s also instilling good eating habits that will last a lifetime for those children.

She also ran Fresh from the Farm: Health Fundraising for Ontario Students, a program in which students raise funds for school activities from the sale of local fresh fruits and vegetables. More than $112,000 has been raised at 152 schools since the pilot started in 2013.

Alison sits on Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Horticulture Value Chain Roundtable and is chair of the Consumer Focus Working Group and past chair of the Horticulture for Health Working Group. She is a member of the steering committee of the National Health Summit: Increasing Fruit & Vegetable Consumption for a Healthier Canada. She sits on the selection panel for the Premier’s Award for Agri-food Innovation Excellence and is a member of the board of directors of the Ontario Food Terminal.

Alison is a graduate of the University of Toronto. She will begin her term as AMI’s executive director on November 2, 2015.

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