For Fiscal Year
2004 - 2005
Table of Contents
As a regulatory agency, the Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission
was responsible for the supervision of twenty-one agricultural commodity
marketing boards and three Section 12 representative associations
in the fiscal year 2004/05.
The Commission directed its attention and efforts in 2004/05 to contribute
to a dynamic, competitive agri-food sector.
Two Expression of Opinion Votes were conducted among producers in
2004/05. In the first, goat milk producers were asked if they wished
to have their commodity become regulated under the Farm Products Marketing
Act. The majority of producers did not support the concept developed
by a group of their peers and consequently, the Commission decided
there would be no plan for this commodity at this time.
The second Expression of Opinion Vote was conducted among Ontario
greenhouse pepper growers. Their opinion was being sought regarding
the idea of including greenhouse peppers as a regulated commodity
under the already existing Greenhouse Vegetables Marketing Plan. This
Plan covered three greenhouse commodities at the time of the vote:
tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce. The vote results showed strong support
for the idea, and the Minister of Agriculture and Food agreed to recommend
to Cabinet that the Plan be amended to include greenhouse peppers.
In May of 2004, a new marketing plan for Ontario apples was established
following an Expression of Opinion Vote which took place during the
previous fiscal year.
The Commission met with Dairy Farmers of Ontario and dairy processors
to consider a request to allow Omega-3 fatty acids in milk beverages.
The Commission subsequently decided to approve the request within
strict regulations and the dairies have responded with new milk beverages
Stakeholders in the regulated marketing sector value the facilitation
role which the Commission undertakes to help marketing boards and
their buyer/processors work through issues. In 2004/05, that role
was rewarded in Ontario's pork sector where a new contracting protocol
is in development together with the revitalization of an industry
During the fiscal year 2004/05, the Commission stressed the importance
of improving the relationship between the province's poultry producers
and processors. The Commission was involved in the process which led
to a producer-processor committee to strengthen their relationship
and build for the future.
The Commission considered and rendered a number of regulatory amendments
aimed at making the regulated marketing system more responsive to
current needs and future opportunities. They dealt with issues ranging
from food quality assurance in milk to the legal technicalities of
what constitutes "processing" in the vegetable industry
for the purpose of licencing processors. The Commission also fulfilled
its regulatory mandate by bringing into force negotiated agreements
reached between boards and their buyer/processors, and awards in those
situations where final offers were submitted to arbitration.
After meeting with a cross-section of representatives from the dairy
and edible oil industries in December 2004, the Commission developed
regulations under the Milk Act to prohibit filled milk and cream,
and regulate the composition of dairy/edible oil spreads.
The Commission is proud of an increasing use of industry advisory
committees in various regulated sectors. We feel that industry developed
solutions, where all stakeholders have had a say, stand the best chance
of successful deployment. The Commission has active involvement in
several industry advisory committees, typically in a chairing capacity.
The Commission welcomed a new Chair, Mr. Dave Hope in September,
2004. Mr. Rod Stork retired from the Commission after serving five
years as Chair. Mr. Hope's chairmanship has spanned over half of the
fiscal year 2004/05.
The Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission is a regulatory agency
without a governing board. It is established under the authority of
the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Act. The
Commission is responsible for the direct administration of two pieces
of legislation, namely, the Farm Products Marketing Act and
the Milk Act. In 2004/05, that supervision included twenty-one
agricultural commodity marketing boards and three Section 12 representative
associations established under the legislation. While supervision
of enabling legislation is a cornerstone of the Commission's agency
mandate, the Commission also provides strategic leadership and intervention
in the form of advice and facilitation. In addition, the Commission
provides education services where it can contribute to the effective
operation of Ontario's regulated marketing structure and the boards
that operate under the legislation.
The mandate of the Commission is to:
- Administer the legislation and regulations of the Farm Products
Marketing Act and the Milk Act and supervise the activities
of Ontario's marketing boards and Section 12 associations to ensure
- marketing boards operate within the powers and authorities
given to them;
- the lines of accountability are maintained;
- stakeholders have an opportunity to influence how the system
- the public policy goals of the legislation are maintained.
- Provide strategic leadership in the form of advice, facilitation
and direction to Ontario's marketing boards and Section 12 associations.
- Develop, recommend and implement all policy related to regulated
marketing in Ontario.
- Provide education programs for Ontario's marketing boards, Section
12 associations and industry stakeholders in order to increase the
effectiveness and efficiency of the regulated marketing system.
The Commission is directly accountable to the Minister for its performance
in fulfilling its mandate and its compliance with government policies.
The Minister, in turn, is accountable to Cabinet and the Legislature
for the Commission's fulfillment of its mandate and for reporting
on the Agency's affairs.
The Commission is the central figure in Ontario's regulated marketing
system and holds an important "public trust" in the exercise
of its duties. Through its actions, it ensures that individual commodity
systems operate in an effective and responsible manner with due regard
to the impact of its decisions on the agri-food sector and consumers,
while at the same time maintaining the public policy goals of the
Performance Targets and Operational Effectiveness
The Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission's strategic plan is
a living document. It annually focuses the Commission's initiatives
as well as shaping its priorities and decision making. It is a public
document, communicated with all marketing boards, representative associations,
regulated industry stakeholders and the public.
The Commission's business plan sets out performance targets and goals
under each of the Commission's three strategic directions. It is against
these goals that the Commission's performance and operational effectiveness
The Commission's strategic initiatives in 2004/05 were focused on
- Ensure the effectiveness of marketing boards;
- Foster enhanced stakeholder relations to achieve industry solutions;
- Advance Ontario's interests on regulated marketing, nationally
Strategic Focus #1: Ensure the Effectiveness of Marketing
Goal: Support a strong regulated marketing system
- Ensure 100% of marketing boards and representative associations
are financially sound and seek to improve the transparency of their
- All 21 boards and 2 of the 3 associations complied with their
regulatory responsibility to file audited financial statements based
on their fiscal year and communicate those reports with producer-members.
The audited financial statements were analyzed by the Commission
to evaluate solvency, transparency, levels of risk, compliance with
Commission guidelines and operating reserves. Although one association
was late in submitting its financial statements to the Commission,
the Commission's analysis indicated that the financial statements
of all boards and representative associations under its supervision
were financially sound in 2004/05.
- To improve the transparency of board financial statements for
producer-members, the Commission contacted all boards and associations
requesting them to include a line item for fees paid for consulting,
professional or legal fees.
- Conduct periodic reviews to evaluate the effectiveness of marketing
plans and the use of authorities. The performance target was 10
boards and associations in 2004/05.
- During the fiscal year, the Commission held full analytical reviews
with 9 boards; one less than its performance target. The boards
- Ontario Apple Growers
- Ontario Broiler Hatching Egg and Chick Commission
- Grape Growers of Ontario
- Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers
- Dairy Farmers of Ontario
- Ontario Pork Producers' Marketing Board
- Ontario Potato Board
- Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency
- Ontario Tender Fruit Producers' Marketing Board
- The Commission believes that review meetings are a cornerstone
in the process of managing accountability. Accountability and responsibility
are expected in return for the delegation of powers to producers
in a marketing plan. Boards are analyzed to assess such things as:
their financial accountability; relations and communications with
producers; use of authorities; governance performance; stakeholder
relations; and strategic direction.
- The Commission also wants to invest its time with boards more
strategically. For this reason, the Commission undertook a broad
evaluation of all boards and associations under its supervision
during strategic planning in December, 2004. As a consequence, the
Commission delayed its 10th scheduled review meeting in the remainder
of the fiscal period in 2005 while it considered its options.
- Marketing plans need the support of a significant number of producers
- The Commission reviewed and reaffirmed its policy concerning "Producer
Expression of Opinion Votes" which it uses to gauge the level
of producer support necessary for proposals dealing with establishing,
retaining or significantly altering the marketing of regulated farm
products. In 1999, the Commission made a significant change to its
policy. To have the best possible information available from such
votes, the Commission believed it was diligent to scrutinize both
the number of producers supporting a proposal and the cumulative
level of production they represent. This policy has worked well
in each subsequent plebiscite and the Commission reaffirmed its
appropriateness for future votes.
- The policy was employed in two votes during 2004/05 involving
greenhouse peppers and goat milk.
- The principle was also the foundation of the Commission's work
in 2004/05 to bring about a new marketing plan for apples in the
province. The Ontario Apple Growers was formed in May 2004.
- The Commission supported the efforts of the Grape Growers of Ontario
as the board reviewed its governance model to determine if grower
members could be better represented. The review resulted in both
producers and production becoming considerations in the board's
- Deliver training and education seminars to improve the effectiveness
of boards of directors elected to lead marketing boards.
- Effective governance is a subject important to producers, elected
boards of directors and the Commission alike. Having a common understanding
of the value of training in the area of governance resulted in strong
participation in the governance training offered for the collective
benefit of all Ontario marketing boards and associations. Elected
directors, chairs and senior staff from 14 boards and associations
participated in a special training opportunity entitled, "Governance
Best Practices." Commission staff also offered customized
governance training workshops to individual boards who requested
assistance in this area. The workshops were delivered to Dairy Farmers
of Ontario, Ontario Soybean Growers and Ontario Sheep Marketing
- The Commission targets newly elected board directors and staff
for governance training. In 2004/05, newly elected directors and
newly hired senior board staff participated in the Commission's
"On-Demand Orientation Workshop," so-called because it
is delivered to fit the needs and schedules of these clients. The
training was delivered to 8 new general managers and new directors
from 6 boards. An added benefit of the workshop is the early development
of a helpful relationship and understanding between the boards and
- All of the Commission's training efforts are evaluated through
feedback from participants. In addition, in 2004/05, the Commission's
training initiatives were recognized and lauded by the President's
Council, a body made up of Chairs and Presidents from marketing
boards and farm organizations in Ontario.
- In 2004/05, the Commission developed a pilot training project
to address the pivotal governance roles played by the Chair, Vice-Chair
and GM/CEO of any marketing board or association. The promotion
of the pilot project took place in this fiscal year and it resulted
in registration from 19 chairs, vice-chairs and GM/CEOs from 10
marketing boards. The workshop was consequently scheduled early
in the next fiscal year.
Goal: A regulated marketing system that adapts to change.
- Continued efforts to keep a responsive and flexible regulatory
system in place.
- The Commission facilitated strategic discussions between the province's
pork processors and the Ontario Pork Producers' Marketing Board
which led to the resolution of an impasse regarding contracting
protocols, as well as laying the groundwork for further collaboration
to keep the system responsive to stakeholder needs.
- After a full and thorough review of raw milk testing standards
in the province, the Commission updated the current regulations.
The goals were to increase system flexibility and simplification
through technology enhancements while decreasing costs in the system
by making better use of resources.
- The Commission supported a request by the Ontario Wheat Producers'
Marketing Board to transfer a board surplus to the creation of a
new financial protection fund for wheat producers.
- After meeting with a cross-section of representatives from the
dairy and edible oil industries in December 2004, the Commission
made a regulation under the Milk Act to prohibit filled milk and
cream, and regulate the composition of dairy/edible oil spreads.
- Review Commission's policy on dual marketing.
- The Commission analyzed the impact of dual marketing in the commodity
markets where it existed in 2004/05. While pool marketing has steadily
declined in the last half-decade in terms of volume of grain, beans
and hogs sold through this means, the analysis also revealed a noteworthy
number of producers who rely on the pool to market their commodity.
- Review Commission's policy on governance.
- Early in the year, the Commission reviewed its governance policy
which is based on the same principles used in its policy regarding
producer expression of opinion votes. Members reaffirmed their policy's
intention which speaks to the value of making both producer numbers
and production a consideration in board governance.
- Examine the impact of integrated operations on boards' dynamics.
- In 2004/05, Commission staff initiated an analysis of integrated
operations operating in the regulated marketing environment in Ontario.
For the purpose of this study, the operations, while vertically
integrated, include processors who own primary production and primary
producers who have invested in processing. The analysis was not
completed in the fiscal year and the results of the study will be
on the Commission agenda in 2005/06.
- Implementation of a board-effectiveness strategy.
- In 2004/05, the Commission's strategic planning session focused
on strategies for allocating Commission resources where they will
be most beneficial in ensuring board effectiveness. The resulting
strategy will be deployed in the next fiscal year 2005/06.
- The Commission continues to deploy a risk assessment grid which
analyzes numerous aspects of board activity from financial management
to marketing to determine board effectiveness and to highlight issues
the Commission needs to address with each board.
- The Commission continues to encourage boards and associations
to use Commission marketing analysts as a resource for advice on
board effectiveness since they have a perspective that includes
many years of experience and a broad perspective of what other boards
have had to deal with.
- Emphasis on training for elected directors of boards continued
to be an important part of the Commission's commitment to this business
objective in 2004/05. The Commission offered training tailored to
the needs of organizations, and the various stages of experience
of their elected directors and senior staff.
- Assist boards to undertake and complete strategic planning. Target
set for having two boards develop or revamp their strategic plans.
- Fifteen of the regulated boards and associations have current
strategic plans as of March 2005. During the fiscal period beginning
in April 2004, four boards developed strategic plans while another
five revisited their plans and fine tuned them. The Commission's
target was satisfied by this commitment to strategic planning by
the boards and associations under its supervision.
Strategic Focus #2: Foster Enhanced Stakeholder Relations
to Achieve Industry Solutions
Goal: Cultivate industry-focused leadership
- Develop an annual education seminar that brings diverse stakeholders
together to look at key issues from an industry perspective. At
least 50 percent of marketing boards and associations should attend.
- In December 2004, the Commission worked with industry stakeholders
to develop and deliver a seminar for marketing boards and their
buyer/processor partners entitled, "Diet & Health: Marketing
Opportunities and Minefields for Ontario's Agriculture and Food
Sector." The seminar topic was developed for its broad
appeal and importance as a trend impacting the food sector. The
seminar was attended by eighty people representing fourteen marketing
boards and associations and four processing industry associations,
so the target of fifty percent participation was exceeded. The qualitative
measure of value to our stakeholders was assessed in feedback surveys.
- Develop and deliver a monthly electronic newsletter to enable
the Commission to reach marketing board and association committee
- The Commission completed a survey of its newsletter circulation
list and in the process, 20 percent of clients migrated to the electronic
newsletter and discontinued the mail-circulated version.
- The Commission's newsletter is circulated to 1000 marketing board
directors, staff, councillors and buyer/processor stakeholders in
the regulated marketing system. Half of the circulation list is
Goal: Ensure the regulated system meets the needs of
producers and the marketplace.
- Play a lead role to foster dialogue and reduce stakeholder conflicts
in targeted industries.
- When issues created stakeholder conflicts in 2004/05, the Commission
immediately intervened to restore and facilitate constructive dialogue
regarding industry challenges. The Commission was active throughout
the year in several commodities related to this commitment and finds
its unbiased position being sought after by more sectors of the
regulated, agricultural economy.
- During the fiscal year 2004/05, the Commission stressed the importance
of improving the relationship between the province's poultry producers
and processors. The Commission was involved in the process which
led to a producer-processor committee to strengthen their relationship
and build for the future.
- In 2004/05, the Commission continued to invite processor associations
to meet with the Commission to discuss their views, objectives and
issues. With this information, the Commission is in a more informed
position from which to interact with marketing boards and their
buyer/processors. The Commission met with groups such as the Turkey
Committee of the Ontario Poultry Processors' Association, the Ontario
Dairy Council and the Wine Council of Ontario.
Goal: Ensure the regulated system maintains a fair
and balanced approach.
- Ensure all marketing boards operate with consideration to other
stakeholders in the industry.
- To foster an improved understanding of interest-based bargaining
skills, the Commission worked with the Ontario Processing Vegetable
Growers to develop a training workshop which was offered to all
marketing boards and associations. Six boards registered 18 participants
in the January workshop.
- In 2004/05, the Commission continued to stress the importance
of industry dialogue and stakeholder involvement when meeting with
marketing boards and associations.
- Seventy-five percent of boards appearing for review meetings
with the Commission will provide demonstrable examples of industry-based
- The Commission held in-depth review meetings with nine marketing
boards during the 2004/05 fiscal year. Two of the boards exhibited
positive, on-going, working relations with their buyer/processors.
Of the remaining seven boards, five or 71% were working through
industry issues in a manner indicative of industry-based solutions.
In the broiler hatching egg and chick sector a new, more flexible
cost-of-production formula was being worked out with consideration
for both sellers and buyers. Dairy Farmers of Ontario worked with
dairies and the Commission to develop a strategy to develop the
market for Omega-3 enhanced milk beverages. The Ontario Greenhouse
Vegetable Growers encouraged the formation of the Ontario Greenhouse
Marketers' Association so organized dialogue with brokers could
occur. The Ontario Apple Growers set up industry advisory committees
with buyers soon after the new marketing board was formed so they
would have a forum for industry-based strategies. Ontario Pork worked
with their buyers to develop a strategy for future contracting protocols.
- Three boards make effective use of an Industry Advisory Committee.
- The pork industry made a concerted effort in 2004/05 to ensure
that stakeholders have a forum for regular, strategic planning and
- The grape and wine industry made initial steps in this direction
during the early part of 2004/05 but was sidetracked by a legal
issue. The process was getting back on track as the fiscal year
was winding down. This committee was co-chaired by members of the
- The province's apple industry is making very effective use of
its two committees which address juice apples and fresh apples.
These committees are chaired by a member of the Commission.
Strategic Focus #3: Enhance Ontario's Interests on
Regulated Marketing, Nationally and Globally
Goal: Active support of supply-managed boards through participatory
involvement in national marketing systems.
- New egg, broiler hatching egg, and turkey national agreements
in place by the end of the fiscal period.
- The Commission categorizes this initiative as a long term goal.
The Commission recognizes that it may take considerable effort to
bring all the parties to an agreement. Each of the three commodities
have draft revisions in various stages but none are close to ratifying
a new national agreement that will receive the unanimous support
necessary from each of the provinces.
- In 2004/05, the Commission played a key role in initiating a series
of discussions with Federal-Provincial counterparts on the challenges
facing feather agencies in updating their national agreements.
- Work with Dairy Farmers of Ontario and the Ontario Dairy Council
at the national level to address Ontario positions and concerns
with respect to managing milk supply.
- The Commission was an active participant in national discussions
aimed at managing the milk supply in Canada. The year started with
a visioning session involving all P5 member provinces. By mid-2004,
the issue of a quota exchange between Ontario and Nova Scotia was
before a dispute panel. After a judgement was rendered, the two
provinces decided to resume discussions.
The Commission's resource requirements are incorporated under the
ministry's business plan. A detailed description of these resources
is presented below.
|Salaries & Benefits
| Ontario Ministry of Agriculture
Executive Staff Member
|Ms. Whale owns and operates Clovermead
Farms. The dairy, veal and beef operation is located in Wellington
County. Deborah is the current Chair of the Poultry Industry Council
and a board member of Farm Credit Canada, as well as a past director
with the Wellington Federation of Agriculture. She has served
the agri-food sector in many other capacities including the Minister's
Advisory Committee for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, the
Agriculture Research Institute of Ontario and the Midwestern Ontario
Mr. Beal owns and operates Peninsula Ridge Estate Winery in Beamsville.
He joined the Commission in June 2002. In addition to operating
the vineyard and winery, Norman is actively involved with the
Wine Council of Ontario and the Canadian Vintners Association.
Norman's background also includes extensive experience as an international
commodity trader specializing in petroleum.
| Mr. Lewis owns and
operates a cash crop and chicken operation in Denfield. Mr. Lewis
served on the Board of Directors of Chicken Farmers of Ontario
from 1991-1998. He was a founding director of the Ontario Corn
Producers' Association. He has also held municipal office as Reeve
of London Township & Warden of Middlesex County.
|Ms. Fuerth is a partner
in Ewe Dell Family Farms in Essex county. The business includes
a 500-head breeding flock of sheep together with a provincially-inspected
abattoir and a cash crop acreage. Carolyn is an executive member
of Ontario AgriFood Education Inc. and a past director with the
Ontario Federation of Agriculture. Carolyn has been involved in
leadership and organizational development for many years. Carolyn's
background also includes dairy farming.
|Robert Aumell joins the Commission
after 33 years with Farm Credit Canada (FCC) which he retired
from in 1997. During his years with FCC, Mr. Aumell specialized
in providing financial services to Canadian producers.
In 1997, Mr. Aumell launched Aumell Agri-Consulting which focuses
on change man-agement in the agriculture sector. The business
is based in Guelph.
|Thomas Richardson of Ottawa, retired
from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in 2004. He most recently
held the position of Acting Assistant Deputy Minister for Pol-icy.
While in that position, Mr. Richardson worked on policy development
for many aspects of agriculture including safety nets and farm
income. Prior to joining Agricul-ture and Agri-Food Canada, he
worked for the Treasury Board Secretariat from 1978 to 1987.
Mr. Richardson holds a PhD from Brown University, Providence
R.I. and a M.Sc. from the University of Toronto.
Manager, Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission, Ontario Ministry
of Agriculture and Food
GLORIA MARCO BORYS
Farm Products Marketing Commission,
Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food
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