Manitoba Beef Producers 2014 Annual Report

Page 1


Messages from the President and General Manager Committee Reports National Organization Reports


THE PRESIDENT Heinz Reimer President


ell, 2014 was a challenging year for beef producers in our province but also a rewarding one. MBP directors and staff continued to lobby governments on a wide range of issues, pursuing policies and programs that will help better our industry. In February the province announced a threeyear pilot project that is seeing the Association of Manitoba Community Pastures take over administration of former PFRA pastures as they are being divested. We hope to see a smooth transition as this process continues. After several years of lobbying, Manitoba beef producers now have access to an expanded forage insurance program, although there are still some challenges around coverage for producers in areas affected by repeated flooding. MBP is consulting with provincial officials to try to address these concerns. MBP also welcomed Manitoba producers gaining access to the Western Livestock Price Insurance Program. These two programs have helped Manitoba producers access improved business risk management tools. In 2014 the weather was again against our beef industry. After a winter that seemed like it would never end, spring finally came. Then heavy rains in late June and July led to extensive flooding. The Assiniboine Basin (especially southwest Manitoba) and areas around Lake Manitoba were particularly hard hit, with some areas only just recovering from the 2011 floods. MBP spent considerable time lobbying the provincial and federal governments to provide forage shortfall and freight assistance programs and providing officials with information about the impact of the disaster. In November, the Canada-Manitoba Forage Shortfall and Transportation Assistance Initiative was announced under AgriRecovery. It included a forage

shortfall program for producers in the Lake Manitoba, Lake Winnipegosis and Lake St. Martin areas as well as transportation assistance for affected producers. MBP is thankful for the assistance these programs provided. However, we have heard concerns from hard hit producers who were not included in the forage shortfall program. MBP is still seeking an expansion of this program to help address the losses suffered by affected producers. MBP also lobbied for the triggering of the Livestock Tax Deferral Provision, which is beneficial for producers forced to downsize their herds due to feed shortage concerns. We were pleased to see the federal government announce in late December that this tool is being made available. Repeated floods and excess moisture conditions have driven many producers out of Manitoba’s cattle industry and are threatening future growth at a time where there are record prices. MBP will continue to work on water management issues such as the need to draw down Lake Manitoba and the Assiniboine River Basin Initiative, just to name a few. Efforts to eradicate bovine tuberculosis continue and MBP is seeking the renewal of the TB Coordinator’s position. We are also working on three projects aimed at eradicating the disease and getting producers to the point where there is passive surveillance instead of live animal testing for this disease. This is only a short review of the many issues on which MBP worked in 2014. I hope you will read the full reports of all MBP committees for more information. Looking ahead to 2015, many issues will keep directors and staff busy. Some examples are: t 3BJTJOH BXBSFOFTT PG UIF DIBOHFT JO UIF SFWJTFE Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Beef Cattle; t 1SJODJQMFT PG TVTUBJOBCJMJUZ F H (MPCBM 3PVOEUBCMF and Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef;

t .BSLFU BDDFTT BOE USBEF UIF POHPJOH $00- CBUUMF CETA and other trade deals; t #FFG BOE GPSBHF SFTFBSDI TUSBUFHZ t " QPUFOUJBM CFFG EFNPOTUSBUJPO TJUF JO .BOJUPCB t 'FEFSBM #JMM $ BOE DIBOHFT UP BHSJDVMUVSBM marketing programs (cash advances); t *OGPSNFE BDDFTT UP $SPXO MBOET t "EKVTUNFOUT UP UIF 5FNQPSBSZ 'PSFJHO 8PSLFST Program to help secure enough labour for livestock operations and slaughter plants; t 8PSLQMBDF IFBMUI BOE TBGFUZ QSPHSBNT BOE t 1SJDF BTTVSBODF MBP saw some administrative changes in 2014. Onetime general manager Cam Dahl resigned in February to join Cereals Canada. We were fortunate to hire our current GM Melinda German, who took over the position in March. We also welcomed Chad Saxon as our new Communications Coordinator and Carollyne Kehler as our part-time Project Coordinator, both in the fall. We were also notified that the lease for our office on Paramount Road was not being renewed so we had to find a new home by June. After an extensive search we relocated to 220-530 Century Street. Thanks to all our staff for making this major undertaking a success. Beef producers have faced some tough times in the last decade. However, markets have finally turned around and producers are seeing good returns on their investments. We have optimism and profitability in Manitoba’s beef industry. It’s time to grow our provincial herd! As president of Manitoba Beef Producers I would like to thank all of our members, directors and staff for your support over the last year. Thank you to everyone for bringing beef issues forward; we are your board and need to hear your concerns and comments. A special thank you to my wife Elsie and family for their help through a difficult time this past fall.



Heinz Reimer

Ben Fox

Bill Murray

Thereza Zuk

Ramona Blyth

Ted Artz

Dave Koslowsky

President District 4

1st Vice President District 13

2nd Vice President District 12

Treasurer District 10

Secretary District 5

District 1

District 2

Cheryl McPherson

Larry Wegner

Larry Gerelus

Tom Teichroeb

Dianne Riding

Caron Clarke

Stan Foster

District 3

District 6

District 7


District 9

District 11

2 01 4 R E P O R T TO M E M B E R S

District 14 (District 9 - Vacant)


GENERAL MANAGER Melinda German General Manager


s I sit down to write my first submission in the Annual Report as MBP’s General Manager it’s difficult to believe I have only been with the organization 10 months. In that time there has been so much activity, a reflection of the diversity and complexity of our industry, the challenges and the opportunities. Topics we tackled in the last 10 months include changes to our producer and beef cow numbers, labour shortages, production pressures, consumer questions, predation, excess moisture and flooding, regulations, government programming, research and international trade, and the list goes on. On July 1, 2014 MBP’s check off increased by $1/ head marketed and we are pleased with the continued support of our producers. MBP, like other provincial beef associations, has faced growing pressure to provide relevant services and support to producers at a time when our beef cow numbers have been dropping and the list of issues increasing. Our industry is changing and we, as your voice, need to ensure we are providing the support and services you need to be successful now and in the future. In 2015 you may be contacted to take part in a survey of our programs and services to ensure we are meeting those needs. Over the next year we want to make strategic changes to best represent your needs provincially and nationally. Manitoba is well positioned with our knowledgeable producers and natural resources to continue to be leaders in the beef industry. We must ensure we are supporting you and telling your story, communicating what we have to offer and how we are an integral part of Canada’s beef industry. The long-awaited price correction came in 2014 where, after more than a decade, producers are finally being compensated for their hard work. This much needed financial change is critical for producers who have struggled for the past decade. The effects of BSE have been long lasting and in the 10 years since that crisis we have also faced droughts, floods and trade barriers. The majority of MBP’s time this summer was spent lobbying the provincial and federal governments for effective programming in response to the flooding and excess moisture issues that plagued much of Manitoba. We argued this programming is critical to ensure we can position the Manitoba beef industry for growth instead of further contraction.

AgriRecovery programming was announced in November. It will provide some needed support but was not as comprehensive as what MBP sought. Challenging times continue for some producers experiencing forage shortfalls but not included in this initiative, as well the feeder/feedlot sector which did not qualify for any programming. In December the federal government announced tax deferrals for designated areas where producers who had to sell off a percentage of their breeding herd to counter the feed shortage can defer some income until next year. Once again, this will provide relief to some producers and assist with maintaining the province’s breeding herd. MBP has always advocated that sound science form the basis for decision making and policy development. In order to be objective it is imperative to use science in planning programs and services to ensure decision makers are not clouded by other persuasive arguments. With that in mind MBP engages and collaborates with stakeholders in various projects to build a scientific foundation on which to make informed decisions. This past year MBP rolled out three projects that target bovine tuberculosis and aim for the eventual eradication of the disease within the Riding Mountain area. For many years, producers in the area have undergone repeated testing to continue to allow the rest of the province and country to maintain our trading status. This disease has taken a huge toll on those producers and we are making progress to move away from live animal testing to passive surveillance. To remain competitive domestically and internationally the beef industry relies on research that provides new production management practices to reduce our cost of production, help minimize environmental impacts or address social license questions. MBP supports research nationally through the Beef Cattle Research Council, provincially by providing funding for various projects and by working collaboratively with various stakeholders on the potential development of a platform to do targeted research and extension in Manitoba. Whether you work for an association, a feed or pharmaceutical company, a manufacturer, government or as a primary producer I look at our industry as a profession. We all make choices of how and where we will earn a living. I believe the profession of being a rancher or in the agriculture industry is changing.

We have mature producers exiting the industry, retiring or perhaps moving on to another career. We have younger producers wanting to expand and we have new entrants coming in. As we see a change in demographics we will see a change in industry focus and priorities and new ideas and approaches emerging. Change is inevitable and also necessary. From the point of view of consumers and the public we have also seen significant changes. For a long time we acknowledged that these groups were becoming disconnected from our profession. But now, consumers and the public are growing more interested in where their food comes from. This is one of the single most significant changes we will undergo in the next few years. It will present us with both challenges and opportunities. As your association we need to look at these changes and plan for how to best represent you. What are the needs of the new and expanding producers? What do we need to do to connect with the changing consumers and the public? How do we best represent our producers and industry to governments whose priorities are also evolving? Sometimes it’s like trying to hit a moving target, difficult but not impossible. I found it rewarding to meet with so many producers during our fall district meetings. They are a marathon but the excellent attendance and positive response we received lightened the load. It was particularly refreshing to see so many new faces attending. The district meetings are an excellent opportunity for you to hear about the year’s activities and to have constructive dialogue with the association and other producers on key issues, as is our Annual General Meeting. It is a pleasure and a privilege to work for the beef producers of Manitoba. The days are fast paced, challenging but rewarding. Our industry is so diverse, with obstacles and opportunities. I look forward to continuing to represent you both provincially and nationally as we work towards a bright future for beef production in Manitoba. “No man needs sympathy because he has to work, because he has a burden to carry. Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt


Melinda German

Maureen Cousins

Chad Saxon

Esther Reimer

General Manager

Policy Analyst

Communications Coordinator

Executive Assistant

Deb Walger Finance MA N I TO B A B E E F P R O D U C E R S




variety of animal health matters kept the committee busy in 2014. Key among these is MBP’s ongoing work on bovine tuberculosis. The disease’s presence has had a costly and disruptive effect, driving a number of producers in the Riding Mountain Eradication Area from the cattle industry and creating ongoing challenges for those who remain. MBP and a broad group of stakeholders are seeking to achieve two key goals. One is the ultimate eradication of this disease. The other is to achieve a state whereby surveillance of live cattle will end with a shift instead to slaughter surveillance. MBP is involved with three important initiatives to help achieve these goals. Funding has been secured from both the federal and provincial governments toward them and MBP is appreciative of this. On March 31 the Manitoba government announced a five-year, $150,000 initiative with MBP to support an industry-led solution for the management and control of bovine TB in the RMEA. Through this initiative, producers in the RMEA will receive support to present animals for testing and to help ensure a strong traceability component through premises identification and a linkage to the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency traceability system. This project will link to the work being done on a federal project so that if bovine TB is found at a slaughterhouse or abattoir as part of routine monitoring, it can then be traced back to an individual farm. On April 23 the federal government announced $297,000 through Growing Forward 2 (GF2) to MBP’s research project to improve the tools available for monitoring bovine TB in the RMEA. This project includes on-farm risk assessments (OFRA) whereby data from the assessments will help enhance the scientific tools being used to detect and eliminate the spread of bovine TB, that is, a scenario tree model which will examine the risk of bovine TB occurring. In October 2014 the provincial government DPNNJUUFE UP QSPWJEF PWFS UISFF ZFBST through GF2 Growing Innovation to characterize risk, map the distribution of elk and deer and finalize the OFRA process. This project will develop and test models of elk and white-tailed deer habitat selection and evaluate the potential overlap of resources by wildlife and domestic livestock. This will help allow management of lands to reduce potential interactions thus minimizing the risk of disease spread. Information from these important initiatives will be used to help move us to a position where cattle producers within the RMEA face the same type of bovine TB surveillance as other Canadian producers, and also to develop strategies to minimize livestock and wildlife interactions.


2 01 4 R E P O R T TO M E M B E R S

MBP recognizes the importance of the TB coordinator in keeping all the stakeholders focused on achieving the aforementioned goals. MBP wants this position continued and has submitted an amendment to the federal GF2 project proposal to include the costs BTTPDJBUFE XJUI UIF QPTJUJPO VOUJM The Manitoba government introduced changes to The Animal Diseases Amendment Act (Bill 71) which would give officials more powers around managing animal diseases. These include giving the Minister the power to make regulations designating reportable diseases, which MBP supports. Another provision will allow the Manitoba government to conduct animal health surveillance programs. MBP has questions about how this would work, such as whether producer participation in provincial animal health surveillance programs will be voluntary. MBP has asked if producers will be required to bear all costs associated with making their animals available for surveillance or whether they will be borne by the provincial government. MBP wants clarification about who assumes the costs for animal injuries sustained during a surveillance program. It is MBP’s position that compensation should be based on fair market value, and that any questions around liability need to be resolved before surveillance is implemented.

MBP has an ongoing dialogue with provincial and federal officials about animal health and care. MBP continues to seek improved access to pharmaceuticals, especially for problems like liver flukes. MBP also uses communications tools like Cattle Country to raise producer awareness about animal health and care matters, including the Revised Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Beef Cattle. Producers are reminded that sections of the Code dealing with pain management (dehorning and castration) take effect in 2016. Thank you to my fellow Committee members for their ongoing insights. BEN FOX Animal Health Committee Chair Cheryl McPherson, Vice-Chair Ted Artz Stan Foster Dianne Riding



aintaining an open line of communication with our members, consumers, the media and government remained a focus of Manitoba Beef Producers in 2014. Our drive to engage the many people that comprise this terrific industry was carried out in a variety of ways as MBP used a number of avenues to inform and advocate for our members in the past year. Tradeshows and other forms of public outreach were a major component of MBP’s communications strategy as our directors and staff members attended many events. Among these were Manitoba Ag Days, the Royal Manitoba Winter Fair, Red River Ex, Manitoba Livestock Expo and the Prairie Livestock Expo. Attending events such as these remains a worthwhile venture for MBP as many of them are attended by members and the general public. This provides us with an excellent opportunity to speak with the membership and hear about their comments about how MBP can better represent them. We plan to be active again in 2015. Public outreach, particularly to the next generation of producers and consumers also remains very important to MBP. Our staff and directors attended events such as the Amazing Ag Adventure which was held at the Bruce Campbell Farm and Food Discovery Centre south of Winnipeg as well as MooMania and the Amazing Rangeland Adventure which were both held in conjunction with the Manitoba Livestock Expo in Brandon. All three events were aimed at students in either elementary school or high school and placed a focus on educating them about the beef industry and the importance of agriculture in Manitoba. MBP also continued its involvement with the important Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC) program and will again be part of the AITC programming in 2015. The communications portfolio also saw a change in staff in 2014 as Chad Saxon was hired to replace Kristen Lucyshyn as Communications Coordinator in September. Saxon’s background in the media has been helpful to MBP as we partner with the media to advocate for members and to promote issues and events. During a very busy 2014 this positive relationship was important as we provided members with updates on flooding and programs and funding available to them. Other issues MBP spokespersons were interviewed on included Country of Origin Labelling (COOL) legislation, flood programming, feed shortages, livestock predation, the current state of the industry and the opening of more markets to Canadian beef. We are pleased to say our positive relationship with the media has made MBP an important source for comments and information when it comes to articles and research related to the beef industry and provincial government policies.

Social media also continues to be important tool for MBP to circulate its message to the masses. MBP has developed a strong following on both Facebook and Twitter and both sites have provided us with the opportunity to reach a large audience for little to no cost. MBP currently has more than 1,600 followers on Twitter, many of whom have taken notice of our posts. For example, in December alone, MBP’s Tweets received 24,700 impressions in a 31 day period. On Facebook, MBP has well over 700 connections (page likes and friends) giving us a very strong reach. Now in its 16th year of publication, Cattle Country remains important to the operations of MBP as a means of communicating with members and keeping them up to date on industry news and happenings. Extension has also become an important component of Cattle Country with those columns serving as a useful tool to producers. We have received a number of positive comments on the articles and columns in Cattle Country and welcome any suggestions from our members. In 2014 Cattle Country also underwent some small changes to improve the overall look and readability of the newspaper. We have been pleased with the response to the changes and plan to make further changes in 2015 to keep the product current and fresh for our readers.

MBP remained involved with the Great Tastes of Manitoba in 2014. The popular show aired on CTV throughout the spring and fall and included two episodes that placed a spotlight on Manitoba beef. Our food expert Adrianna Barros continues to do a terrific job of creating recipes featuring our product and we look forward to continuing our involvement with Great Tastes in 2015. As we look to the upcoming year, MBP will work on new ways to get our message out to the public at large. A focus of 2015 will be increasing our consumer outreach throughout the province. Today’s consumer is much more informed than in the past and has shown a significant interest in how their food is grown and where it comes from. Properly educating consumers and highlighting why beef should be a part of their diet will be an important job for MBP in 2015. Respectfully submitted, TED ARTZ Communications Committee Chair Cheryl McPherson, Vice-Chair Dianne Riding Stan Foster MA N I TO B A B E E F P R O D U C E R S




t is MBP’s position that the ability to use Crown lands is essential to future growth in Manitoba’s cattle industry, either by expansion of existing herds or through new entrants. Further, having access to agricultural Crown lands at a fair market rate is very important to cattle QSPEVDFST XJUI NPSF UIBO GPSBHF MFBTFT JO use across Manitoba as well as many haying and grazing permits. Also important is producers’ ability to achieve optimal production on these lands. The flooding and excess moisture conditions of 2014 posed challenges for lessees and permit holders, with much Crown land too wet to use. Given the lost productivity MBP asked the provincial government to consider giving affected producers reduced Crown land lease rates. MBP lobbies the Manitoba government to ensure Crown lands policies reflect current production practices. This includes asking for consideration to expand the number of animal unit months (AUM) under a forage lease beyond the existing limit of "6. .#1 CFMJFWFT UIJT DIBOHF JT OFFEFE due to the evolving size of cattle herds in Manitoba. Another area of focus is agricultural Crown land that has been removed from production and returned to the Crown. MBP would like these lands reinstated for agricultural use whenever it is appropriate to do so. MBP continues to ask the Manitoba government to develop an informed access policy for agricultural Crown lands so producers know when someone intends to access their leased lands. This policy is needed to help protect the safety of people and livestock as well as to reduce the risk of property losses. Another critical reason is biosecurity. Producers are very diligent in their efforts to

prevent animal diseases from entering their herds and to prevent noxious weeds and invasive species from getting a toehold on their property, but the public must play a role too. In 2014, MBP spoke to the need for an informed access policy in its submission on Bill 71 – The Animal Diseases Amendment Act. The Manitoba government is trying to strengthen provisions around animal disease management to lessen the likelihood of their introduction and spread. Changes MBP is seeking to agricultural Crown lands policies include: notice to the lessee is required before public access; permission from the lessee is required before public access; and, lessees should be given the ability to discourage public access where there is high risk to public safety. MBP participates in the Agricultural Crown Lands Act Stakeholders Committee which examines matters such as agricultural Crown lands lease rates.

Current rates are in effect for the period 2013- 2015. MBP is reluctant to support future increases in the lease rates until the Manitoba government enacts an informed access policy for agricultural Crown lands. MBP welcomes the opportunity to work with provincial officials to help shape this needed policy. Once such a policy is in place, MBP is willing to reexamine changes to the lease rate. Thank you to my fellow Committee members for their work this past year. Respectfully submitted, BILL MURRAY Crown Lands Committee Chair Ben Fox, Vice-Chair Stan Foster Tom Teichroeb

MBP IS YOUR ORGANIZATION Manitoba Beef Producers promotes and defends beef producers’ livelihoods through a united effort. Your membership furthers our opportunities to achieve this goal. COMMUNICATION IS KEY

Contact MBP with issues that affect your operation. Make your voice heard at district meetings. Vote on issues by attending the annual general meeting. WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU. Please contact us today with your questions and comments at or 1-800-772-0458. 6

2 01 4 R E P O R T TO M E M B E R S



BP’s Domestic Agriculture Committee works with all levels of governments to ensure there are effective programs and services to help Manitoba’s cattle industry better manage risk. There were a number of significant developments on the risk management front in 2014. The long-awaited Western Livestock Price Insurance Program was announced in mid-February, a new tool to help reduce producers’ exposure to price and basis risk. Producers have the option of insuring their calves, feeders, or fed cattle as well as selecting only basis protection for fed cattle. MBP had long sought the expansion of this program to Manitoba producers as it helps put beef production on a more level playing field with other commodities. MBP thanks both the federal and provincial governments for enacting this four-year pilot project and staff from Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation (MASC) for their ongoing work on the program. Beef producers gained access to a new suite of forage insurance programs in 2014 under AgriInsurance. Enhancements include: increased flexibility in the level of coverage; individual coverage rather than a regional approach; differentiated coverage for different forages and mixes; and, a disaster component. MBP believes the combination of livestock price insurance and the revised forage insurance program helps give beef producers a strong and bankable risk management package. While it is possible to insure for some types of risks, not all events can be anticipated. Flooding and excess moisture conditions hammered Manitoba’s cattle industry again in 2014. It was clear that feed shortages were going to be a problem in some regions, and MBP provided government officials with extensive feedback on the damages sustained. MBP requested that the provincial and federal governments consider providing needsbased forage shortfall and transportation assistance programs to help producers source needed feed for the winter. In mid-November the Canada-Manitoba Forage Shortfall and Transportation Assistance Initiative under AgriRecovery was announced by the federal and provincial governments. It includes a transportation assistance program for the entire province as well as a forage shortfall program directed at producers in the Lake Manitoba, Lake Winnipegosis and Lake St. Martin areas. MBP recognizes the assistance this important initiative provides. However, we share the concerns of hard hit producers not included in the forage shortfall program. MBP has sought an expansion of the forage shortfall program to help address the losses these producers suffered.

As well, MBP asked the federal government to consider triggering the Livestock Tax Deferral Provision which could be useful to producers forced to sell their breeding stock due to feed shortages. This measure was announced in late December. MBP has identified with MASC officials areas where components of the forage insurance program have not be as responsive as hoped for producers affected by repeated flooding and excess moisture conditions. We have requested these areas be re-examined. MBP provides feedback to MASC on other risk management programs such as the Pasture Days Insurance Pilot Program and the Wildlife Damage Compensation Program. There have been growing concerns about the costly and detrimental effects of predation on Manitoba’s beef industry, and MBP wants to ensure producers are receiving fair compensation for their losses. In 2014 there was a steady rollout of programming under Growing Forward 2 (GF2) in areas such as the environment, food safety on-farm, competitiveness and others. MBP provides ongoing input to the provincial government about the programs from a beef industry perspective. MBP is delivering the Verified Beef Production (VBP) Program, including both VBP and biosecurity workshops. MBP helped secure the addition of new BMPs to Manitoba’s GF2 program eligibility catalogue including compost site for management of dead stock, herd medical treatment software, as well as carrying case and/or docking station for RFID equipment.

5ISPVHI #JMM $ The Agricultural Growth Act, the federal government is making changes to the way the Advance Payments Program is delivered with the goal of simplified delivery and ease of access, such as allowing administrators to deliver cash advances on multiple commodities. Another component will make breeding animals eligible under the program. MBP has reinforced the importance of Manitoba’s cattle producers having access to livestock cash advances and is seeking a smooth transition as these changes are rolled out. Thank you to my fellow committee members for their work on these and other issues over the year. Respectfully submitted, CARON CLARKE Domestic Agriculture Programs Committee Chair Larry Gerelus, Vice-Chair Ramona Blyth Tom Teichroeb





esponding to an ongoing array of government consultations dominated the work of MBP’s Environment Committee in 2014. As has been the pattern in recent years many of the consultations focused on finding ways to more effectively manage water in Manitoba. In MBP’s view completing these strategies is more pressing than ever as Manitoba’s beef industry continues to be hammered by the effects of repeated flooding and excess moisture conditions. Manitoba’s beef herd has contracted in the wake of these disasters causing considerable economic hardship, stress, environmental damage and lost opportunities. A way forward is needed. In 2014 MBP was represented at the open house on the Lake Manitoba and Lake St. Martin Outlet Channels Conceptual Design as well as the one on the Assiniboine River and Lake Manitoba Basins Flood Mitigation Study. MBP provided feedback on both of these initiatives. It is MBP’s steadfast position that when future water management projects are being considered outflows must equal inflows. Further, MBP believes the swift construction of a second outlet from Lake Manitoba must be a top priority to help reduce the future risk of flooding. There were additional consultations on the provincial government’s proposed Surface Water Management Strategy as well as its proposed new regulatory approach around sustainable drainage. Topics covered in these consultations included: no net loss of wetlands, developing new risk management tools to reduce nutrient loading; water retention and storage; drainage licensing; and, implementing basin-level flood mitigation measures. MBP provided comments on both documents, noting it is essential that provincial water management policies encourage rather than limit cattle production in Manitoba. While compensation programs are beneficial in times of disaster, Manitoba’s beef industry simply cannot afford repeated water-related wrecks. MBP looks forward to working with governments on the creation of surface water management strategies that will increase resilience, reduce risk and stimulate adaptive capacity. MBP continued to be represented on both the Lake Manitoba Flood Rehabilitation Committee and the Southwest Flood Strategy Committee. MBP is actively involved with the new Assiniboine River Basin Initiative (ARBI), sitting on its Planning Committee. ARBI is working to bring together an array of stakeholders from Manitoba, Saskatchewan and North Dakota affected by how water is managed in the Assiniboine, Qu’Appelle and Souris river basins. At a November conference in Regina the delegates agreed to proceed


2 01 4 R E P O R T TO M E M B E R S

with the formalization of ARBI. Next steps include implementing the governance and financing mechanisms. Looking at water quality issues is another area of work for the Committee. MBP participates in the Lake Friendly Stewards Alliance, a provincial initiative bringing together a wide range of stakeholders committed to finding ways to reducing nutrient loading and improving water quality across the Lake Winnipeg Basin. Looking ahead to 2015, MBP will provide input into other consultations arising from the provincial government’s TomorrowNow – Manitoba’s Green Plan. One is a discussion paper on recycling and waste reduction which is examining strategies to more effectively manage waste including agricultural plastics (grain bags, bale wrap, twine and netting) and veterinary products and sharps. MBP will be providing input into expected provincial consultations around the development of a new Drought Management Strategy and future water conservation policies and strategies. The Manitoba government’s ban on the cosmetic use of pesticides takes effect in 2015. Although the legislation does not directly affect agricultural production, MBP remains concerned noxious weeds and invasive species could spread to agricultural lands, causing environmental damage and potentially harming animal health. These concerns have been conveyed to the government. MBP participated in the discussions leading to the formation of the Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (CRSB), an action spearheaded

by the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. The initiative is focusing on the environmental, economic and social sustainability of the beef industry. These are areas of growing interest by customers and consumers of beef and the general public. The inaugural meeting of the CRSB was held in September in Kelowna, and was attended by a range of industry associations (including MBP), government officials, environmental stakeholders and companies that buy and sell Canadian beef. Thank you to my fellow Committee members for their ongoing work on such a diverse range of issues. Respectfully submitted, CARON CLARKE Environment Committee Chair Bill Murray, Vice-Chair Stan Foster Heinz Reimer Tom Teichroeb



he feeder/feedlot industry in Manitoba is represented locally by MBP and nationally through the National Cattle Feeder Association (NCFA). MBP supports NCFA through an annual membership as well as providing staff support through General Manager Melinda German. I am also currently the vice-chair of the NCFA. Many of the sector-specific issues we face in Manitoba are also common across Canada. Unified industry voices are needed to create change. We have been fortunate to have our concerns heard on issues not only locally but also nationally. Two of our key focus areas this past year have been labour shortages and proposed regulatory changes, in particular those dealing with transportation of livestock. In 2014 after strong lobbying efforts the livestock sector was successfully added to the agriculture stream under the Temporary Foreign Workers Program, thus being eligible to secure workers through this initiative. This was a big win for our sector but we are not done yet. Packing plants remain outside the program but need more workers. Labour shortages in this part of the value chain put the entire industry at risk, creating the potential for a serious bottleneck. Not only does this put us at risk if we face future border closures, it can also affect the price of cattle. All of this will have a significant trickledown effect on the entire industry, right down to the cow-calf producer. Other countries like Australia have succeeded in having plants added into their labour programs. We will continue to seek this change so the sector can remain competitive, helping to protect our industry. The last year included meetings with elected officials and senior level government staff in Ottawa where there was an opportunity to discuss the impacts of potential changes to the animal transportation regulations. Currently under the Health of Animals Regulation cattle can be transported for up to 52 hours before they are to be unloaded to be fed, watered and rested. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is proposing changes to the regulation to decrease the number of hours before cattle must be unloaded. Manitoba is unique in our transportation situation and moving animals to plants, especially to the east. The health and welfare of our livestock is our primary concern. When making any changes, we are strongly encouraging the government to make informed decisions based on sound science and to consult with industry about their potential impact before implementing them. What will 2015 bring? We will continue to represent the feedlot industry on the aforementioned issues as well as ongoing challenges

around COOL and increasing commodity prices. We will work with our provincial government to ensure our sector’s voice is heard and that the entire Manitoba beef industry is taken into consideration when new program and policies are developed, such as dealing with disasters. With significant opportunities coming our way as new markets open up to Canadian producers we need to ensure we have a healthy feeder/feedlot sector to see our industry expand and prosper in Manitoba.

Respectfully submitted LARRY SCHWEITZER Feedlot Committee Chair Ben Fox Larry Gerelus Harry Dalke Claire Scott

Contact us for a free copy of the revised Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Beef Cattle and MBP’s Biosecurity Guidebook. Call 1-800-772-0458 or email MA N I TO B A B E E F P R O D U C E R S




looding, the Community Pasture Program transition and Growing Forward 2 were some of the areas the Committee examined in 2014. After a very challenging winter Manitoba beef producers were again hit by water-related challenges that carried on through summer and into freeze-up. Pasture and forage production took a significant hit, and there was extensive infrastructure damage in some regions. MBP worked with officials from Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development (MAFRD) to ensure that producers whose operations were at immediate risk had the resources needed to move cattle or to find alternate feed supplies. Their assistance was greatly appreciated. Once the immediate crisis passed, the Committee’s attention turned to ensuring affected producers would have enough feed to carry them through the fall and winter. This Committee, along with MBP’s Domestic Agriculture Committee, worked on assessing the extent of the damage and the type of programs affected producers would need to retain their herds through the winter of 2014-15. MBP provided extensive feedback to governments as they undertook their assessment of the disaster and considered programming options. In mid-November the Canada-Manitoba Forage Shortfall and Transportation Assistance Initiative under AgriRecovery was announced by the federal and provincial governments. It includes a transportation assistance program for the entire province as well as a forage shortfall program directed at producers in the Lake Manitoba, Lake Winnipegosis and Lake St. Martin areas. MBP welcomed the assistance this important initiative provides. However, we share the concerns of hard hit producers not included in the forage shortfall program. MBP has sought an expansion of the forage shortfall program to help address the losses these producers suffered. MBP also requested the triggering of the federal Livestock Tax Deferral Provision which could be beneficial to producers forced to downsize their breeding herd due to feed concerns. In late December the federal government announced its availability. How water is managed in Manitoba is having a significant impact on the sustainability of this province’s cattle industry. Repeated events have led to a contraction in beef production, particularly in areas such as around Lake Manitoba. This comes at a time when the industry should be rebuilding so as to capitalize on new and expanded beef marketing opportunities. MBP uses every opportunity available to remind government officials that a comprehensive water management strategy is required in Manitoba. It is needed to help mitigate future risk, build


20 1 4 R E P O R T TO M E M B E R S

resiliency in the system (both in times of excess water or droughts) and help set the stage for future beef industry growth. There were major developments on the community pasture file. The non-profit Association of Manitoba Community Pastures (AMCP) began administering some of the community pastures that had been divested by the federal government and it will manage more as the transition process continues. In February the provincial government announced a pilot program that includes three years of funding for this transitional process. Having access to community pastures is integral to the success of many producers operations. MBP is pleased to have been a key driver behind the formation of the AMCP and to have helped facilitate the development of the business plan. MBP acknowledges the significant efforts made by the AMCP as well as by provincial and federal officials to achieve this outcome. An agreement was signed between MBP and the provincial government for the Verified Beef Production (VBP) program under Growing Forward 2 (GF2). MBP began delivering workshops again in the fall, both in person and via videoconferencing with assistance from MAFRD staff. There has been strong producer interest in the workshops. MBP looks forward to a future expansion of the program to include new program modules related to animal care, biosecurity and the environment. The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association is leading this expansion. MBP is offering biosecurity workshops in conjunction with the VBP Program. MBP continues to provide feedback to government departments and Crown corporations about the need for their staff and contractors to follow biosecurity practices when visiting livestock operations. Monies for beneficial management practices are available under GF2 for producers participating in the VBP Program, covering off areas such as food safety on-farm, biosecurity and traceability. MBP helped secure the addition of new BMPs to the program eligibility catalogue including compost

site for management of dead stock, herd medical treatment software, as well as carrying case and/or docking station for RFID equipment. MBP participates in the Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef, an initiative spearheaded by the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. The initiative is focusing on the environmental, economic and social sustainability of the beef industry. MBP co-chairs the Livestock Predation Protection Working Group (LPPWG). It was created in early 2013 after requests by MBP to have a broad group of stakeholders discuss predation issues. Participants include provincial departments and agencies, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, other livestock groups and the Manitoba Trappers Association. Its primary purpose is to explore strategies for reducing predation and the costly losses associated with it. Committee member Theresa Zuk is MBP’s representative to the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency. She sits on committees that examine matters such as traceability, premises identification, movement documents, tag retention challenges, tag sales, and more. Providing feedback on government policies and programs is an important role for this Committee. Other issues examined in 2014 include: workplace safety and health regulations; labour shortages; ensuring producers have continued access to the Advance Payment Program as the federal government changes the way this program is administered; fall application of nutrients; dealer bankruptcies, and many more. Respectfully submitted, LARRY GERELUS Production Management Committee Chair Cheryl McPherson, Vice-Chair Ted Artz Theresa Zuk Caron Clarke



BP strongly recognizes the importance of research and a portion of Manitoba producers’ check-off dollars are used for this purpose each year. Investments in research are valuable for several reasons not the least of which is ensuring greater productivity and profitability on our beef operations. Manitoba producers’ check-off dollars are invested in research areas such as livestock transportation, residual feed intake, animal health, forage production and farm management strategies, among others. For example, MBP is working collaboratively with the federal and provincial governments on three different initiatives around bovine tuberculosis. There are two goals. One is to eradicate the disease in Manitoba. The other is to move to a system whereby producers in the Riding Mountain Eradication Area will have their herds tested through passive surveillance instead of the current arduous and costly system of live animal surveillance. Achieving both goals will be very beneficial to Manitoba’s beef industry. Having access to research is also important for developing sound public policies. The beef industry needs to be able to inform governments of the potential impacts of proposed legislation and regulations to ensure they are based on science and not public perception of a certain issue. This could include policies related to nutrient management, climate change, water management or animal health surveillance. Further, each year there is an increasing level of interest in how food is produced. Research results can also be used to demonstrate to our customers and consumers that beef production is sustainable, be that from the perspective of animal care, the environment or social sustainability. MBP works collaboratively with academic institutions and stakeholders on research, providing either direct or in-kind contributions to support this work. For example, MBP has provided input into the development of and helped promote the revised Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey. First conductFE JO UIJT TVSWFZ JT FYBNJOJOH QSPEVDUJWJUZ and management practices of cow-calf producers to get an updated set of production benchmarks. Survey results will be used to help direct future research and extension activities aimed at improving the productivity and profitability of cow-calf producers. Participating producers can receive a complimentary report of their production performance measures based on their survey responses. MBP also works with industry groups like the Beef Canada Research Council (BCRC) to achieve maximum utilization of check-off dollars invested in beef research. This includes avoiding duplication, identifying gaps and coordinating needed

research. MBP is represented at the BCRC by director Caron Clarke. MBP continues to explore the possibility of establishing a beef-forage evaluation and knowledge transfer farm with the goals of building industry capacity and increasing productivity and profitability for Manitoba’s beef producers. It would involve a collaborative effort by those interested in fostering the growth and understanding of sustainable beef and forage production, including industry, government, research institutions and private partners. At the fall 2014 district meetings, MBP distributed a short survey to producers asking them about their research priorities, examining areas such as animal health and welfare, nutrition and feed efficiency, economics and profitability, environmental sustainability, forage and grassland productivity and beef quality. The information gleaned will help MBP as it analyzes future research needs and investments. Be sure to check out Cattle Country for ongoing updates on research projects being undertaken in Manitoba and beyond that benefit our industry. Thank you to the members of the Research Committee for their assistance this year. Respectfully submitted, LARRY WEGNER Research Committee Chair Caron Clarke, Vice-Chair Ben Fox Larry Gerelus MA N I TO B A B E E F P R O D U C E R S



CANADIAN CATTLEMEN’S ASSOCIATION Dave Solverson President Canadian Cattlemen’s Association


hat a year it has been for Canada’s beef cattle industry. Record high prices for cattle, strong demand for beef and heavy activity in the areas of trade and market access resulted in a very fluid and dynamic environment unlike any seen before. These conditions have created a new price environment for the industry going forward – an environment that will require a new approach from industry in order to fully grasp the opportunity that lies ahead. The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA), working with the Government of Canada, achieved significant progress on important trade files in 2014. The Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement (CKFTA) has finally come to fruition after years of hard work, and in time to deliver solid opportunity to Canada’s beef producers. CCA’s efforts continued on the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with a goal to ensuring the technical details in the completed text are such that the CCA can support. Canada’s beef producers already have access to the EU, which is underutilized, and the CCA encourages producers and feedlot operators interested in exporting beef to familiarize themselves with the respective requirements. Canadian beef exports to China have grown rapidly since 2012 reflecting the reality that Chinese demand for beef has outpaced what they are able to produce domestically. According to some forecasts, China could double its annual global imports of beef before the end of this decade. What an opportunity this is for Canada’s producers. U.S. Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) was another active file that dominated the year. While there were many twists and turns, the crucial development occurred on October 20 when the World Trade Organization (WTO) Compliance Panel found that the U.S. has failed to bring its COOL program into compliance with its WTO obligations. The Panel report unequivocally supports Canada’s position that the U.S. amendments to the COOL regulation continue the discrimination against live imports of cattle and hogs into the U.S. marketplace. The Compliance Panel decision marked the third time that the WTO has found the U.S. has failed to meet its inUFSOBUJPOBM USBEF PCMJHBUJPOT 5IF /PWFNCFS EFDJTJPO by the U.S. to appeal the Compliance Panel decision is that country’s final procedural option before Canada can exercise its right to retaliate. The CCA remains focused on eliminating the unfair discrimination on U.S. imports of cattle (and hogs). The CCA believes the U.S. will lose their appeal – a move which we view as a stall tactic. While this process is expected to take several months, with a decision perhaps as early as the spring of 2015, the CCA believes it will be faster than many of its U.S. opponents anticipate. Meanwhile, the CCA continued its lobbying efforts to keep the COOL reform momentum building in the U.S., including with groups that will be impacted by the retaliation that will follow if the WTO again rules in Canada’s favour on this latest appeal.


20 1 4 R E P O R T TO M E M B E R S

The CCA devoted considerable effort to the issue of labour in 2014. Labour is an issue for processors, particularly in Alberta, given the large processing plants in Brooks and High River, but also in agriculture in general across the provinces. The CCA has been advocating a Labour Action Plan for agriculture in meetings with Ministers and during Fly-in days, the Hill Picnic and other lobbying efforts. The CCA is working to have the processing sector, also plagued with chronic and acute labour shortages, recognized as unique and therefore no longer subject to the reforms and their detrimental effect on business. The CCA emphasized the fact that if the beef cattle industry hopes to take advantage of the increased opportunities for trade the Government of Canada has worked so hard to achieve, the packers require a work force sufficient in numbers and training. Sustainability took a front row seat this year. The CCA has done a lot of good work in terms of creating the Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (CRSB) and participating in the efforts of the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef. The latter this year made significant progress on defining sustainable beef and now regions around the world are adapting those principles and criteria to their own areas. This movement has gained a lot of traction, especially from food retailers, and I’m pleased that Canada, through the CRSB, is well represented and viewed as a leader in sustainability in the beef industry. Other achievements this year for the CCA include the Western Livestock Price Insurance Program (WLPIP). The market-based risk management program will help producers in select provinces manage price and basis risk – one of the most unpredictable aspects of managing Canadian cattle farms. Programs like the WLPIP rely on price discovery, which is critical for sending the correct price signal from the consumer to the producer. Without this additional information, producers will face the risk of higher premiums or no coverage during certain times if consistent price information is unavailable to create a settlement index. In response, Canfax, the CCA’s market analysis division, launched an enhanced price reporting system to ensure the industry has the most relevant market information for decision making and analysis. At the CCA semi-annual meeting resolutions concerning the timely implementation of AgriRecovery and other programming during disasters like flooding and excess moisture that affected the livestock sector in 2014 were passed. The CCA also agreed to lobby governments to implement a long-term solution for flooding issues in Manitoba. The impact of the 2014 floods in parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba and how best to mitigate the damage in the short and longer term was also discussed. The CCA remains committed to improving disaster response programs. Addressing the short term production and infrastructure challenges as well as the long term drainage and water management issues are needed. Tax deferral for temporary herd reductions – announced in

MBP members of CCA board: Heinz Reimer Tom Teichroeb Ramona Blyth

December –, help in repairing damages through AgriRecovery and major infrastructure investment in water management are all needed to keep the Manitoba beef cattle industry moving positively toward the opportunities provided by new market access agreements and the current price outlook. The National Beef Strategy was launched. A collaborative effort by Canada’s six national beef sector organizations, the strategy is about how the organizations can work together to best position the beef industry to compete for a larger share of the world market and to produce the high quality beef product of choice in the world. And now is the time to act. There are many factors influencing the outlook of the global and North American beef industry. Many of the factors which have brought prices to these levels continue to look supportive for the markets for the next one to three years. Improving economic conditions in the U.S., and a potentially weaker Canadian dollar are certainly positive moving forward. Projected lower beef production in North America, flat global production, and growing demand is also very positive for Canadian cattle producers. Finally, my appreciation goes out to the Prime Minister Stephen Harper, International Trade Minister Ed Fast and Minister Ritz for their unceasing efforts in achieving the truly outstanding progress reached this year. Respectfully submitted, Dave Solverson President, Canadian Cattleman’s Association


NATIONAL CATTLE FEEDERS’ ASSOCIATION Jeff Warrack NCFA Chair and Director from the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association


NCFA Vice-Chair and Director from the Manitoba Beef Producers Larry Schweitzer

he National Cattle Feeders’ Association (NCFA) was established in 2007 to represent Canadian cattle feeders on national issues and work with other cattle organizations to strengthen Canada’s beef industry. NCFA is truly national in scope, providing cattle feeders with a unified voice and an effective vehicle to meet the challenges confronting our sector. NCFA membership is comprised of provincial beef organizations from all major cattle feeding regions of Canada, each of which contributes funding based on provincial fed cattle populations. NCFA members include: t #SJUJTI $PMVNCJB "TTPDJBUJPO PG $BUUMF 'FFEFST t "MCFSUB $BUUMF 'FFEFST "TTPDJBUJPO t 4BTLBUDIFXBO $BUUMFNFO T "TTPDJBUJPO t .BOJUPCB #FFG 1SPEVDFST t 0OUBSJP $BUUMF 'FFEFST "TTPDJBUJPO t -B G�E�SBUJPO EFT QSPEVDUFVST EF CPVWJMMPOT EV 2V�CFD NCFA began 2014 with a successful Annual General Meeting that produced two key outcomes. First, a new set of bylaws were approved. The updated by-laws are designed to operate NCFA under the new Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations (NFP) Act. Second, a strategic plan was approved. This plan will guide NCFA’s research and advocacy efforts over the next five years and serve as a critical touchstone to drive member value. The plan is organized around three pillars – growth and sustainability, competitiveness, and industry leadership. On this foundational platform, NCFA is well-positioned to continue providing constructive input on key government policies affecting Canada’s cattle feeders, strengthening relationships with influential government decision-makers, and effectively collaborating with industry stakeholders. In 2014, several elements of this plan were put into play, and are already yielding results.

has urged the government to remain firm on retaliation, and also contributed $165,000 to the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) to continue the fight against COOL. In May, the chairs of NCFA and CCA sent a joint communication to the federal Minister of International Trade, urging him to initiate hearings at the Canadian International Trade Tribunal on potential retaliation and to publicly announce a date for retaliation pending WTO authorization. t (PJOH GPSXBSE /$'" XJMM DPOUJOVF QSFTTJOH GPS FYQBOEFE export opportunities, particularly unrestricted access to Japan and a comprehensive free trade agreement with the emerging economies of southeast Asia. NCFA will continue sounding the message that these should be the top priorities of the federal trade agenda. t " LFZ DPNQPOFOU PG MPOH UFSN HSPXUI BOE TVTUBJOBCJMJUZ includes investing in research and development initiatives that will improve the profitability and efficiency of beef production. NCFA is guiding the development of a single protocol for animal care (Feedlot Assessment Tool) that can be used by all Canadian feedlots. NCFA’s $35,000 contribution to the project has levered an additional $290,000 in government and industry funding. NCFA is also contributing $20,000 over two years for a modernization initiative at the CBGA. Developing an emergency preparedness plan for the cattle feeding sector has been on NCFA’s radar for some time. A $273,300 project is currently underway for the sector in Alberta. When completed, this plan can be used as a template for feedlots in other provinces. NCFA has also invested $7,000 ($2,000 in 2014, $5,000 for 2015) to become a member of the new Barley Council of Canada, and is also engaged with the Feed Coalition, which brings the grain and livestock sectors together to build a feed industry that is profitable, sustainable, and competitive.

Report on Strategic Pillar #1: Growth and Sustainability

Report on Strategic Pillar #2: Competitiveness

Throughout 2014, NCFA lobbied governments and partnered with industry stakeholders to create a business environment more conducive to long-term growth of the cattle feeding sector, achieve better terms of trade and expanded export opportunities, and invest in research and development projects: t /$'" JT B NFNCFS PG UIF $BOBEJBO "HSJ 'PPE 5SBEF "MMJance (CAFTA) and actively engaged the Market Access Secretariat (MAS), the Beef Cattle Trade Advisory Group (BCTAG), the Beef Cattle Policy Advisory Committee (BCPAC), the Beef Value Chain Roundtable (BVCRT), and government officials within Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and International Trade. This yielded significant dividends in 2014. In March, the new CKFTA with South Korea was announced. This agreement will see the 40% tariff on beef eliminated over the next 15 years. In September, the new CETA with the EU was signed. This agreement eliminates the 20% tariff on the Hilton Beef Quota (15,000 tonnes annually) and allows duty free access for an additional 50,000 tonnes per year. NCFA is working with government and industry to ensure Canada is positioned to take advantage when CETA comes into force. t /$'" DPOUJOVFE UP IJU CBDL PO 64 iDPVOUSZ PG PSJHJOw MBCFMling (COOL) in 2014. In October, the WTO issued its third ruling on COOL, once again voting in favour of Canada. NCFA

/$'" TVQQPSUT B SFHVMBUPSZ SFHJNF UIBU iXPSLTw GPS DBUUMF feeders and positions our sector for growth, prosperity, and enhanced competitiveness. t *O "VHVTU /$'" PSHBOJ[FE B UPVS PG )JHIMBOE 'FFEFST JO Vegreville, Alberta with Dr. Bruce Archibald, President of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, and officials from the CFIA’s Western Regional Office (Alberta North). NCFA also met with the President and his Executive Team at CFIA IFBERVBSUFST JO 0UUBXB EVSJOH PVS BOOVBM i0UUBXB "EWPDBDZ 8FFL w 5ISPVHI UIFTF UZQFT PG BDUJWJUJFT /$'" XPSLT to maintain a positive working relationship with the CFIA. t /$'" JT BMTP QMVHHFE JOUP UIF $'*" T DPNQSFIFOTJWF regulatory modernization initiative. In 2014, NCFA provided input on numerous regulatory proposals, including the Product of Canada label, new regulations for feed ingredients and labelling, and proposed changes to the livestock transportation regulations. NCFA has also urged the CFIA to consider the regulatory changes that can be NBEF XIFO $BOBEB TFDVSFT iOFHMJHJCMFw SJTL TUBUVT GPS BSE. This will allow cattle feeders to maximize the competitive advantages that come from this status. t 5P FYQFEJUF UXP XBZ USBEF JO MJWF BOJNBMT BDSPTT UIF Canada-US border, NCFA helped devise a pilot project using e-signatures at the Sumas, Eastport, and Sweetgrass

border crossings in July. At last count, over 200 loads of cattle have been shipped using e-signatures. NCFA will advocate for an expansion of the pilot and continue lobbying for a full e-certification system. t /$'" JT DVSSFOUMZ JO UIF QSPDFTT PG EFWFMPQJOH B OFX QSPKFDU designed to identify the most problematic and costly regulations facing cattle feeders, and then build the business case for reform and a strategy to secure necessary changes.

Report on Strategic Pillar #3: Industry Leadership NCFA meets regularly with government officials to build bridges, strengthen relationships, and increase understanding of the cattle feeding sector. We also work with other industry associations to develop strategies, sponsor training and educational programs, and collaborate on industry initiatives. t *O /$'" MPCCJFE WJHPSPVTMZ GPS DIBOHFT JO UIF GFEeral Temporary Foreign Workers’ Program (TFWP) to reduce red tape and resolve ongoing labour shortages that continue to plague feedlots and beef processors, particularly those in western Canada. As a result of NCFA advocacy, feedlots were designated as primary agriculture under the TFWP and were exempted from the new program fee and the cap on the number of foreign workers at each farm. NCFA continues to work with the Canadian Agricultural Human Resources Council (CAHRC) to advance the recommendations of the National Labour Action Plan. t 5ISPVHIPVU /$'" XBT BDUJWFMZ JOWPMWFE JO UIF EFvelopment of the new National Beef Strategic Plan, serving on both the National Beef Strategic Planning Group (NBSPG) and the new Council of Beef Advisors (CBA). While the plan was developed with input from all national and provincial beef industry organizations, implementation will be guided by the new Council of Beef Advisors. In 2014, NCFA chaired the first two meetings of the Council. t #VJMEJOH QPMJUJDBM DIBNQJPOT GPS UIF DBUUMF GFFEJOH TFDUPS remains a key strategic priority for NCFA. In November, /$'" IFME BOPUIFS TVDDFTTGVM i0UUBXB "EWPDBDZ 8FFL w During the course of the week, the NCFA lobby team met with over 40 officials, including MPs from all parts of Canada, two federal Cabinet Ministers, several Ministers of State and Parliamentary Secretaries, and more than a dozen key public servants in the departments of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the CFIA. NCFA also hosted an MP Breakfast and jointly sponsored an MP reception with the Grain Growers of Canada and the Canadian Grains Council. NCFA will continue to steadily build awareness among government leaders, ensure a strong voice at the policy table for cattle feeders, and serve as a credible and respected voice for our sector. I am proud of the work that the NCFA Board and Staff have accomplished in 2014 to deliver value and promote the interests of our members. As the results show, NCFA continues to evolve as a credible and highly focused organization working on behalf of cattle feeders across Canada. Respectfully submitted, Jeff Warrack Chair, National Cattle Feeders’ Association MA N I TO B A B E E F P R O D U C E R S



CANADA BEEF INC. Jack Hextall Chair


t takes only a short visit to a Canadian farm or SBODI OFBS ZPV UP iGFFMw UIF XPSE iMPDBMw " UPVS of the business with its care and attention to detail only hard work and a special dedication to a craft can produce will allow even a casual onlooker to feel the pride, but also elicit that same feeling of pride in them. It is perhaps the single greatest communication tool the beef industry has to offer, but bottling that feeling up to offer is a more difficult proposition. This can be particularly true when working in international markets where a local feel doesn’t resonate with consumers. 2014 for Canada Beef has been about starting to make emotional connections and really building a brand consumers recognize for its world class quality, around the globe. Canada Beef has found new and innovative ways to reach the consumer in Asia this year. Canada Beef’s Asian offices created two mascots named Rocky and Maple who visit events to build consumer attachment. They also built cooking classes for adults and children to help consumers maintain and grow family values around meal time. In Japan, Canada Beef focused on consumer marketing to leverage the emotional and functional attributes of Canadian beef. In Japan’s strategic approach, Canada Beef collaborated with culinary experts to provide innovative brand positioning to differentiate its brand marketing in both retail and foodservice segments. The greatest marketing success was Canadian Hamburger Steak Fair at Gusto with over 640 stores nation-wide. Gusto is the largest casual dining restaurant chain in Japan. This had a great impact on the Japanese consumer to increase exposure and recognition about the quality and taste of Canadian beef. With the federal government’s announcement of four new Canadian trade offices in China earlier this year, Canada Beef has ramped up activities in China alongside the trade commissioners. The recent addition of Canada Beef staff and reallocation of market development resources will allow the Canada Beef International team in China to focus on immediate and strategic market growth. Efforts include facilitating hands-on educational opportunities to feature the Canadian Beef Advantage with the ultimate goal of creating Canadian beef brand loyalty. Events such as the Canadian Beef Branding Series in Guangzhou, which was attended by Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Gerry Ritz in November, will continue to drive the brand and immerse customers and consumers in the Canadian beef story in our international markets. Canadian beef reached new heights in the

MBP member of Canada Beef board: Trevor Atchison

Hispanic hub this year, due in part to the significant promotion and partnerships with Karisma Hotels & Resorts, Jackson Family Wines, and Air Canada VacaUJPOT 5IF i$BOBEJBO #FFG $VMJOBSZ 4FSJFTw IBT DBQtured both local, and international media attention, and reaches a wide variety of consumers, Chefs, and has a direct impact on the Mexican foodservice industry, especially high-end hotel chains. This innovative investment project leveraged funds, technical resources and in kind contributions from four world-class brands and proudly and positively associated the Canadian beef brand with other world class brands, Air Canada, Jackson Family Wines and Karisma Hotels. At home in the North American space, Canada Beef’s efforts to build the story around the brand have spanned from attending trade shows to spreading the word face to face, to joining our retail and restaurant partners in telling the actual story of where beef comes from. In Canada, this means partnerships with Ontario Corn Fed Beef and Loblaws to bring the ranch experience to the consumer. All of these efforts allowed the connection to food supply to be told from the voices of actual producers, in many cases, calling out their provinces individually. Also in Canada, Canada Beef and our provincial partners joined forces to launch a partnership with the CFL, to highlight beef producers on a national level. With both regular season activation spaces supported by the provincial associations and their own brandmarks, and the Canadian Beef brand being leveraged through the playoffs, Canadian producers across the nation have been recognized to a new and engaged audience. This proved a successful opportunity to leverage beef’s nutritional value, as well as bring consumers closer to the beef farmers and ranchers of Canada. Both Tim Hortons and Subway launched successful national campaigns highlighting Canadian beef in the fall of 2014. Sharing our story through these partners allowed the Canadian beef brand to reach new audiences and gain new exposure alongside other valuable Canadian brands. The partnerships also allowed our industry stakeholders to engage with the brands and share their experiences online with one another, continuing to bring the Canadian beef story closer to consumers. The Canadian Beef Brand mark, our visual symbol of the promise we make to our customers, has generated over 500 million flyer impressions via our partners with zero Canada Beef investment. This marks a deep understanding on their part of the value the Canadian Beef Brand has. A series of Canadian beef story videos were developed and distributed nationally via a media outreach

and stakeholder program. As part of a national #ThankaFarmer press release and social media effort, a substantial viewing audience was reached nationally. The ability to continually leverage these videos has led to a great return of value for these pieces. Canada beef partnered with major food media and industry partners, to develop and deliver a made-in-Canada initiative maximizing consumer reach, and built Canadian beef story resources. Partners for the initiative included: provincial beef associations, Kraft, Canadian Living, Costco, Taste Alberta, Ontario Corn Fed Beef and News Canada. The Physician education program, which has reached almost 1,000 unique physicians via one-onone outreach in doctors’ offices and a similar number via key physician conferences, allowed the Canada Beef nutrition program to have in-depth, impactful, detailed conversations with this key influencer audience resulting in concrete attitude changes. This next year will see an ever increasing movement to making a consistent global strategy around bringing meaning to the brand which will be punctuated with the opening of The Canadian Beef Centre of Excellence. The Centre of Excellence will be a new brand beacon uniting the Canadian Beef iDPNNVOJUZw BOE QSPWJEF ÜSN HSPVOEJOH GPS BO invigorated beef identity. By partnering with the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada as well as Western Economic Diversification, Canada Beef has been BCMF UP TFDVSF BO BEEJUJPOBM NJMMJPO JO GVOEJOH for the Centre of Excellence. Linking the value chain and developing synergy is critical in today’s business environment. The Centre has been designed as a focal point for the Canadian beef industry to enable connectivity and collaboration. In order to give customers and consumers reasons to believe in our industry and resulting products, the entire Canadian value chain plays a significant role in making this happen. It is the role of Canada Beef to work specifically through business development with its chosen partners in select priority markets and segments who value, and will remain loyal through premiums paid for Canadian quality beef products. As industry, we fully acknowledge we all need to play an increasing role in ensuring Canadian beef delivers on its brand commitment each and every day. Repectfully Submitted, Jack Hextall Chair Please see our full Annual Report at

Canada Beef Inc. is an independent national organization representing the research, marketing and promotion of the Canadian cattle and beef industry worldwide. Its efforts to maximize demand for Canadian beef and optimize the value of Canadian beef products is funded by cattle producers through the National Beef Check-Off, which in turn makes it possible to access beef industry market development funds provided by the Government of Canada and the Government of Alberta. 14

20 1 4 R E P O R T TO M E M B E R S



Tag Distribution By means of the Tag Supply Chain Optimization Project, Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA) is now providing distribution and logistics services for beef DBUUMF UBHT UISPVHI _ BVUIPSJ[FE UBH EFBMFST BDSPTT Canada as well as through a quick and easy-to-use, direct-to-producer web store at and tollGSFF UBH PSEFS TFSWJDFT BU The change in tag distribution has streamlined tag data and tag distribution processes for the approved tag dealer network as well as non-breed specific beef producers, resulting in enhanced data integrity within the Canadian Livestock Tracking System (CLTS) database. Every non-breed specific beef producer that has a CLTS account also has a corresponding web store account. These linked accounts allow for immediate issuing of purchased tags to a producer’s inventory and maximized tag data accuracy – both key to an efficient livestock traceability system. It takes fewer than five minutes to activate a direct-toproducer web store account, choose and order from the full array of approved tags and applicators, and have the supplies shipped to an address of choice in three to five business days. As the national administrator for beef cattle identification and as a not-for-profit, industry-initiated organization led by a board of directors representing 16 producer associations from all sectors of the livestock industry, CCIA is responsible to maximize tag data integrity in the CLTS database and to ensure producers have uninterrupted access to approved CCIA RFID tags in Canada. CCIA designed and launched this 24-hour online ordering system to maximize the integrity of beef tag data maintained in the CLTS database, and to save producers time and money.

Canadian Food Inspection Agency Consultation Process on Draft Compliance, Control and Enforcement Framework The Cattle Implementation Plan (CIP) committee met throughout 2014 in-person and via teleconference to develop updated/enhanced definitions for purposes of clarity regarding the CIP’s details, phasing and timelines; as well as support and task its Technical Solutions subcommittee to make direct contact with CFIA to discuss technological opportunities and solutions for implementing animal movement recording and reporting. In December 2013, Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) implemented a first-round of consultations with industry on the Draft Compliance, Control and Enforcement Framework, which describes CFIA’s vision and approach for facilitating and verifying compliance, preventing non-compliance, controlling risk and responding to non-compliance to regulations in support of livestock identification and traceability in Canada.

MBP member of CCIA board: Theresa Zuk

In direct response to the first-round of consultations that CFIA initiated with industry in December 2013, CCIA’s CIP committee met to discuss how the options described in the Framework are incongruent with industry’s needs, and to prepare a response to CFIA in Ottawa. Along with other producer-focused organizations, CCIA submitted official correspondence and sent the CIP’s Technical Solutions subcommittee for an in-person meeting with CFIA in Ottawa to discuss how the proposed Framework differs from the Cattle Implementation Plan, which is industry’s roadmap to identify the targets, steps and issues in implementing a sustainable, effective and efficient cattle traceability system for Canada. NOTE: The most current version of the CIP is online within CCIA’s home page at and, in English and French respectively. In 2014, the CIP created a Tagging Sites subcommittee to work on gaining further understanding of tagging sites under the current regulations; provide a definition that covers all forms of tagging sites and a clearer reference to current animal identification regulations and business flow at tagging sites; as well as propose amendments to CFIA tagging site regulations in Ottawa in early 2015. Tagging sites play an important role in animal identification by ensuring that approved tags are properly applied to cattle and bison that have not been tagged prior to being transported, as well as data integrity by recording all such tag applications in a timely manner, which enables faster and more efficient animal trace-back if needed. To ensure cattle and bison producers are aware of and have access to local tagging sites, CCIA publishes a list of all approved tagging sites within CCIA’s home page online at and fr/, in English and French respectively. CCIA is providing full support for tagging sites as they confirm their tagging site status within the CLTS dataCBTF UP NFFU UIF BNFOEFE TFDUJPO 5BHHJOH 4JUFT of the Health of Animals Regulations, which came into force July 1, 2014. The tagging site’s authority to issue approved CCIA RFID tags and report that information to the CLTS database remains the same. Tagging sites that issue approved tags are subject to requirements under section 174.1 of the Regulations. If a tagging site sells approved CCIA RFID tags, that tagging site must become a CCIAapproved tag dealer to comply with CFIA regulations. The CIP’s two pending Issues include the tagging site regulation clarification as well as creating a process for tag activation of transient animals exported from Canada to US and then returned to Canada. In terms of targets for 2015, members of the CIP Committee agreed to work together to achieve 90 per cent premises identification in each province/territory by January 2016, regardless of provincial/territorial regulations. In order to reach this target, CCIA and AAFC are preparing a strategy in support of a joint communications effort for a regional and

national PID outreach. As stakeholders and funding opportunities are currently being reviewed, more information will be released on this initiative in early 2015.

Canadian Agri-Traceability Services Canadian Agri-Traceability Services (CATS) has been working with industry stakeholders to develop one naUJPOBM USBDFBCJMJUZ EBUBCBTF JODMVEJOH "HSJ 5SBÎBCJMJU� 2V�CFD "52 CZ CVJMEJOH UIF EBUBCBTF BQQMJDBUJPO EBUB exchanges and preparing for launch in Quebec; gathering business rules at CCIA;, assessing data exchanges with partners; converting existing information into CATS; and adapting and migrating the PigTrace system into CATS for Canadian Pork Council (CPC). CATS made tremendous headway in terms of business development in 2014 by recruiting an Executive Director and Finance and Accounting Manager, IT Project Director, Project Control Officer, Business Analyst, Senior Hardware Architects and IT teams (in Longueuil/ ATQ and Calgary/CCIA); arranging office space in Ottawa (CPC), Longueuil (ATQ) and Calgary (CCIA) with office IT set-up; developing branding strategy/logos, corporate policies and bylaws; selecting an audit firm; implementing a governance structure; holding 12 board of directors meetings and establishing a senior project advisory committee; developing a five-year budget and work plan; developed a project charter, risk register, statement of scope and project plan for gathering business rules. CATS was included on implementation committees for beef and dairy cattle, bison and sheep in 2014 – anticipating being included on committees for goat, cervid and pig sectors in 2015. The specific functions, look and feel will depend on the needs and business requirements of each stakeholder. The four key components: Database, hardware architecture, application development and data exchanges. CATS will establish processes to accept electronic manifests, mobile submissions as well as direct/ online submissions of information to the database. CATS will work with key stakeholders to convert information on paper manifests into information that is available electronically. CATS is working with the CIP Committee and its subcommittee the Cattle Movement Reporting Working Group to review options for cattle movement reporting through intermediate sites in order to understand how to implement a movement reporting approach better, based on the CIP; to meet the needs of industry; and to minimize the burden and impact on the speed of commerce. Respectfully Submitted,

Dr. Pat Burrage Chair, Canadian Cattle Identification Agency

Canadian Cattle Identification Agency (CCIA) is a not-for-profit, industry-initiated and led organization incorporated to establish a national cattle identification program to support efficient trace back and containment of serious animal health and food safety concerns in the Canadian cattle herd. The agency manages the Canadian Livestock Tracking System (CLTS) database – a trace back system that maintains radio frequency identification (RFID) tag information, and is led by a board of directors made up of representatives from all sectors of the livestock industry. MA N I TO B A B E E F P R O D U C E R S




Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.