by Rejean Pommainville
Director, Ontario Federation of Agriculture
ONTARIO — 2018 has been a year. We’ve had provincial and municipal elections, international trade deals, extreme weather and unprecedented levels of DON in corn crops. So, you could say it’s been a tumultuous year in agriculture, once again.
It’s the time of year at the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) to reflect on what we’ve accomplished this year and look ahead to the new opportunities for 2019. We are getting to know the many new provincial politicians and are encouraged that rural Ontario is well represented at Queen’s Park.
In 2019, we’ll continue to advocate for key areas that impact the productivity and sustainability of our 38,000 farm businesses with greater investments in rural infrastructure. We’ll be pushing for completed access to affordable natural gas, high speed internet in rural and northern communities, a stable rural school network, and improvements in rural roads and bridges.
At this time of year, it’s important to recognize how mental health has become part of our everyday message in agriculture and our rural communities. It’s been a challenging and somewhat discouraging harvest for many farmers across Ontario. That can be a tough way to end out the year, especially during the hectic and demanding holiday season. In difficult times, it’s more important than ever to remember that family and friends are our most important resource.
On behalf of the entire OFA organization – our board, Member Service Representatives, staff and volunteers – we hope each and every one of you have time to spend with family and friends, and remember we are all part of an amazing community.