Former Ontario Agriculture Minister passes away

Former Ontario Agriculture Minister passes away
Jan 29, 2024

Jack Riddel is a member of the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame.

By Andrew Joseph; Image from Harry Hoffman and Sons Funeral Home

Jack Riddell, a former Ontario Minister of Agriculture, passed away on January 23, 2024, at the age of 92. He served in that role from 1985 to 1989.

Riddell had also been an MPP for Huron and Huron-Middlesex from 1971 to 1990, winning six consecutive elections for the Ontario Liberal Party. For the Ontario Liberals, he was elected and became the Agriculture Critic in 1973.

He was born in London, Ontario, but grew up in Huron County, earning a B.Sc. In Agriculture from the OAC in 1957.

He was the Assistant Agricultural Representative in Hastings and Essex Counties, then the Assistant Manager of the Ontario Stockyards.

At home, he raised cattle and sheep on a farm near Dashwood, Ontario, even while working as a teacher at the South Huron District High School.

He owned and operated the Hensall Livestock Sales Barn and worked as an auctioneer jointly with his brother Doug.

After becoming the Ontario Minister of Agriculture and Food in 1985, he introduced the Ontario Family Farm Interest Rate Reduction program and formed an Agriculture Caucus Committee of rural MPPs.

For his efforts to sustain and advance agriculture, Riddell was elected to the Ontario Agriculture Hall of Fame in June 2017.

A service for Riddell took place on January 27, 2024.

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