WINNIPEG, July 13, 2011 /Canada NewsWire/ - A new President was elected by dairy farmer delegates from across the country this afternoon. Wally Smith owns MariaHolme Farms in Chemainus BC, where he milks 75 cows and grows his own forage and corn.
"I'm very proud to represent dairy farmers in Canada," said the new President. "I want to recognize the work of Jacques Laforge over the years. I look forward to work with all of you and ensure a vibrant industry today and for our children."
Earlier today, dairy farmers and industry stakeholders heard testimonials from keynote speaker and agricultural leader Jack Wilkinson, who challenged farmers to produce food sustainably. There were also two panels; the first discussing agricultural policy that encourages farmers to be more sustainable and the second one included one dairy farmer and two dairy processors talking about what sustainable development means to them and their business, and how they leverage their sustainable practices with consumers. You can find the biographies and presentations of these speakers on DFC's website. These testimonials speak, not only to respect of the environment, but also to the resourcefulness and innovation in the dairy industry!
DFC also took the opportunity to announce the creation of an environment stewardship award to recognize dairy farmers who go beyond common industry practices. Starting in 2012, this DFC award will recognize the achievements of dairy farmers implementing environmentally sustainable practices, which positively contribute to climate change issues and/or manage natural resources efficiently.
Nominations for the Board were received and the Executive members will be named by the Board later today. The closing banquet tonight will also recognize the contributions of Jacques Laforge, outgoing President to DFC over 25 years on the Board, including the last seven years as President. Jacques is retiring from DFC. The banquet will also honour Richard Doyle, Executive Director, who has been with DFC for 35 years. He is staying on to serve DFC.