Update on Resolutions at 2014 AGM

Mar 20, 2015

At the November 5, 2014 Alberta Pork AGM, the following resolutions were put forward and subsequently carried by means of a producer vote:

1. Be it moved that no producer shall be permitted to sell hogs in Alberta unless that producer is CQA (Canadian Quality Assurance) certified under the current CQA guidelines.

Any changes to the CQA Program shall require another vote to become mandatory.

It would appear that Alberta Pork may not have the authority to impose this on producers.
The current structure of the CQA program does not allow all of Alberta’s 395 pork producers to be certified members. In addition, there are some significant program changes being considered that need to be reviewed before enrollment in CQA becomes mandatory for producers.

While producers engaged in pig delivery to federal processing facilities in Alberta must be CQA certified, this is not the case for those dealing with provincial plants or some out of country (US) hog buyers.  Those enrolled in the program represent approximately 69% of the farms and 98% of the hogs marketed.

Consequently, after careful consideration of the motion, the Alberta Pork board of directors was unable to pass it in the interests of fairness to all producers. We are working closely with the Canadian Pork Council and the Quality Assurance Program to make the CQA program accessible to all Alberta producers by 2016. Once protocols are in place to evaluate all production systems in the province, we can re-visit the motion in an environment where all producers are on a level playing field.

Regarding the second part of the motion, while it seems good in theory, it’s highly impractical to implement. Following the motion strictly would require a vote every time a change is made to the CQA program, even if it’s only a minor re-wording of a sentence or paragraph. Unfortunately, this would be neither practical nor an efficient use of time and resources on the part of producers or Alberta Pork.

While the Alberta Pork Board of Directors sees the value of the CQA program, they need to ensure that the interests of all producers are being served. We will continue to look at options to encourage greater participation while making the process more efficient.

2. Be it resolved that Alberta Pork provide services to help hog producers access and employ labour on a user fee basis.

This is a critical issue for producers, one that only increases in importance and complexity. In the face of constantly changing policies, Alberta Pork continues to explore options for producers while keeping them up to date on the latest rules and procedures through our website and our work with the Agriculture Industry Labour Council of Alberta. Once we have a comprehensive plan on how best to assist producers in securing workers, we will share it with our members and do everything we can to help them navigate this complicated process.

Source: Alberta Pork

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