July 20, 2022

Summary of CSGA's Annual General Meeting

Thank you to all who attended our 118th Annual General Meeting in person and online on July 6th! President Joe Rennick welcomed 106 attendees to the meeting and provided an overview of an exciting year for the Association. He covered the steps taken toward becoming a stronger Association, our CSGA 2.0 business plan, and our strategic vision for a future with CSGA taking on even greater leadership in Canada’s seed system.

Special guest, Dr. Siddika Mithani, President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), addressed attendees, speaking to the strong and productive relationship between CSGA and the CIFA and how it will continue to strengthen under Seed Regulatory Modernization (SRM). During her remarks, Dr. Mithani referred to seed as the starting point of everything and a fundamental part of the CFIA’s mandate to protect Canadians, build public trust and support industry. She also spoke of farmers’ need for innovative varieties and quality seed for a sustainable food supply, saying, “when farmers have access to the latest advances in technology and breeding to bring superior varieties to market, all Canadians benefit.”

On SRM, she commented on the CFIA’s commitment to a full-scale review, including the role of government in the regulation of seed, and that the CFIA is looking at applying incorporation by reference to the system to be more responsive and flexible to meet stakeholders’ needs.

Doug Miller then delivered his first Executive Director’s report, speaking to the Association’s goals, priorities and deliverables. He spoke briefly on SRM and that we have invested considerable time to ensure a leadership role and influence outcomes. Doug also touched on CSGA Learn, our new online seed training platform and the new 2021-2022 Annual Report.

Doug then transitioned to the financial report, highlighting the Association’s financial performance for 2021-2022 and shared some audited financial statements on screen. 

Jonathan Nyborg, CSGA Past President and Chair of the Resolutions Committee, presented the Resolutions Report and provided responses to the resolutions carried during the 2021 AGM.

Jonathan continued as Chair of the Nominations Committee and presented the Nominations Report for the Board of Directors – please see Article 2 below. Jonathan thanked Bob Rugg of Saskatchewan as his term as Honorary President ended, and the membership elected board-nominated André Lussier of Quebec as the new Honorary President to 2025.

Outgoing President Joe Rennick then passed the gavel on to incoming President Dale Connell. Each spoke to their pride in the CSGA, the strength of its membership and the importance of collaboration.

With the business portion of the AGM adjourned, a Town Hall meeting was held after the break, where our meeting Sponsors were highlighted.

Jonathan Nyborg, Chair of the Awards Committee, then announced the recipients for the Robertson Associate Award, the Honorary Life award and the Clark-Newman-Clayton Award – more in Article 3 below.

The ASCIS Association then provided a video update on their work for the past year, followed by Doug Miller returning to the podium to speak to SRM in more detail. He summarized that CSGA’s vision for the future is a strong, national seed certification system that encourages innovation, provides a digital single window for all seed certification services and is focused on strong governance and partnerships.

Again, speaking as Chair of the Resolution Committee, Jonathan Nyborg then presented the two member resolutions received for discussion and voting.

Resolution 1 was put forth by Mike Shewchuk and seconded by Kurt Printz.

WHEREAS, over the course of this growing season it has become apparent that some canola hybrids lacked vigorous performance;
WHEREAS transparency is fundamental in upholding the value of Certified Seed;
WHEREAS seed vigour testing is not yet standardized in Canada;
THEREFORE, be it resolved that the CSGA work in part with Seeds Canada and other seed industry partners to expedite the process to make seed vigour testing standardized across Canada.
And therefore, be it further resolved that a minimum standard for vigour be developed for major crop kinds.

The motion was carried.

Resolution 2 was put forward by Jonathan and seconded by Glenn Logan.

WHEREAS a lot of effort went into making the 2022 virtual CSGA Annual Meeting a success; and 
WHEREAS numerous organizations provided funds to assist with the financing of the Annual Meeting; 
THEREFORE, be it resolved that CSGA extend thanks to all the speakers, sponsors, organizers, and staff for their efforts and contributions to the 2022 virtual CSGA Annual Meeting.

The motion was carried.

Before moving to the closed member-to-member session, Joe Rennick announced that the 2023 AGM would be an in-person event in St. John’s, Newfoundland, from July 8 to 10, 2023. We hope to see you all there!

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Your New CSGA Board of Directors - Welcome!

We are pleased to present and welcome CSGA’s new 2022-2023 Board of Directors!

Your Executive Committee

  • Dale Connell, President
  • Glenn Logan, 1st Vice President
  • Shannon Bieman, 2nd Vice President
  • Joe Rennick, Past President
  • Peter Scott, Provincial Government Advisor (New Brunswick)

Your Grower Directors
Nominated by each CSGA Branch and elected by members at the AGM

  • Glenn Logan, Alberta-British Columbia
  • Chelsea Tomlinson, Alberta-British Columbia
  • Roy Klym, Saskatchewan
  • Laurie Wakefield, Saskatchewan
  • Andrew Ayre, Manitoba
  • Ryan Murray, Manitoba
  • Shannon Bieman, Ontario
  • Carl Bolton, Ontario
  • Roxanne Asselin, Quebec
  • Richard Brault, Quebec
  • Jonathan Nyborg, Maritimes

Your Provincial Advisors
Appointed by their respective provincial Minister of Agriculture

  • Bryan Harvey, Academic Advisor
  • Brenna Schilds, British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture
  • Marcia Hewitt-Fisher, Alberta Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
  • Sara Tetland, Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture
  • Dennis Lange, Manitoba Ministry of Agriculture and Resource Development
  • Damien Chaput, Ministère de l’Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l’Alimentation du Québec
  • Amy Sangster, Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture
  • Steve Hamill, Prince Edward Island Department of Agriculture and Land

Their skills and experience will be an asset to our Board and membership as we work toward the continued success of our Association and realizing our vision for the future.

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CSGA Honours Eight for Their Profound Contributions

This year, CSGA is honoured to announce the recipients of the 2021 Robertson Associate Award, the Honorary Life Award and the Clark-Newman-Clayton Award. 

The Robertson Associate Award is awarded to members who, with utmost fidelity and success, have fulfilled their obligation to the Association and have contributed to the betterment of the seed sector and Canadian agriculture.

The 2021 award recipients are Kevin Runnalls, Joe Hickson, and Peter Szentimrey.

The Honorary Life Award is presented to persons who, by distinguished services to the Association, have contributed to the betterment of the seed sector and Canadian agriculture.

This year, we are pleased to recognize Cathy Breadner, Dr. Helen Booker, Dr. Istvan Rajcan and Doug Stirling.

The Clark-Newman-Clayton Award is presented to a person who has made an exceptional contribution to pedigreed seed production in Canada and Canadian agriculture through research, plant breeding or administration.

We are proud to honour the late Dr. Alireza (Ali) Navabi with the Clark-Newman-Clayton Award.

Congratulations and thank you to all our award recipients, and thank you all for your contribution! We invite you to read more about each recipient here.

 

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CSGA Updates on AOSCA and OECD

After a long travel hiatus due to the pandemic, CSGA Executive Director Doug Miller was on the road (and in the air) in late June, attending the OECD Seed Schemes Annual Meeting in Tallinn, Estonia and the 2022 AOSCA Annual Meeting in Wenatchee, Washington.

Across both meetings, Canada’s leadership role in the international seed certification framework – particularly CSGA’s role – was made abundantly clear.

At OECD, CSGA plays a pivotal role in their digitalization framework and standards development, with hemp as the focus this year. During the meeting, CSGA participated as an observer alongside the International Seed Federation (ISF), International Seed Testing Association (ISTA) and EuroSeeds. A policy workshop on the contribution of seed to sustainable food systems showed the critical role of seed as a solution to climate action.

At AOSCA, CSGA holds a leadership position at the Board and Standards Council levels. Our standards are highly regarded and used as a template for many new crop kinds coming in AOCSA seed certification.

Several standard changes were proposed at the meeting, including new certification requirements for quinoa and vegetatively propagated hybrid bluegrass.

Our position as a global leader was not due to chance but rather the strategic investments we’ve made over the years, including investing in resources to ensure international harmonization of regulations for the competitiveness of the Canadian seed sector and to incorporate new technology.

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Reminders For The 2022 Crop Season

It’s renewal season! Seed Crop Certification and Membership/Renewal Applications are well underway, so here are a few reminders on the application process.

How to Apply

  • Log in to your SeedCert account – it is your certification window!
  • Please read the Application Support Document, which provides instructions for applying for seed crop certification and membership and highlights changes for the 2022 crop season.
  • The Membership Application/Renewal Form must be completed before submitting your Applications for Seed Crop Certification.
  • Growers who would like a third party to submit applications on their behalf must authorize those third parties on their Membership Application/Renewal Form. (If you miss that step, please use the form on the Forms tab in SeedCert to grant authorization.)
  • Each field or plot for certification must be applied for by using the Application for Seed Crop Certification Form.

Bulk Applications

Applicants with a high number of fields may apply for seed crop certification using a bulk application form. Please contact the office to obtain the current version of the CSGA Bulk Application for Seed Crop Certification spreadsheet.

Maps and Directions

A field map and/or GPS coordinates are required and must be submitted at the time of Application for each seed crop. Maps must contain sufficient information for the inspector to find the field.

If the Application is made by the respective crop application deadline date, a 14-calendar day grace period is given from the Application date to submit a map or GPS coordinate through SeedCert. A $50.00 incomplete application penalty will be applied per Application if a map or GPS coordinate is not supplied within this timeframe.

 Seed Crop Listings and Consent to Share Information

To publish pedigreed seed crop listings in CSGA’s national online Pedigreed Seed Locator and in the Provincial Seed Guide magazines and websites, certain personal and crop production information are shared with third parties to facilitate the public distribution of that information. Applicants can provide consent and customize the information shared with these third parties through the Membership Application/Renewal Form for the production of unassigned fields.

Harvesting

If you are not sure your crop has been inspected and passed certification, or if there are any outstanding certification requirements, don’t harvest! Please check your SeedCert account, as information is provided in near real-time. An uninspected harvested crop is an uncertified seed crop. Only CSGA will provide the final certification decision. 

Of course, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact us by email or 613.236.0497 ext. 8803. We are always happy to help.

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Thank You to Our AGM Sponsors

Our AGM would not have been possible without the invaluable sponsorship from our sponsors. Their contributions to this year’s event are greatly appreciated.

On behalf of CSGA, a big thanks to each of you! For more information on our great sponsors, please click their logos.

 

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Contact Us

CSGA staff are here to help you. Don’t hesitate to contact us. Remember the CSGA national office operates in the Eastern Time (ET) zone.

Telephone: (613) 236-0497
Email: communications@seedgrowers.ca
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 8455, Ottawa, Ontario, K1G 3T1
Courier Address: 21 Florence St, Ottawa, Ontario K2P 0W6

Click here for complete staff contact information.