by BETTER FARMING STAFF
With simplified regulations in hand, the Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Appeals Tribunal granted speedy accreditation yesterday to the Ontario Federation of Agriculture, the province’s largest general farm organization.
“Yesterday everything was done quite expeditiously,” says Mark Wales, OFA president. Now the OFA is looking to get an “offer and acceptance” of membership procedure in place. “We are still making sure that we have got this one right,” he said, following an executive meeting Friday morning where this was a key item on the agenda.
Joining the federation will be a two-step process, he says. The Farm Business Registration will go ahead as before, with notices going to farmers in January, but there will be some sort of offer and acceptance procedure that goes into place after that. “It would be better to have a nice paper or electronic trail,” for the Tribunal when the federation appears before it for re-accreditation in three years, he says. He expects there will be no drop in the number of members in the federation because of the re-accreditation issue, or the process. The federation has an array of benefits for its members, including a health plan, that make membership attractive, he says. "One of the most important things that farmers will appreciate is that if you are a member you will get Better Farming magazine," Wales noted in reference to an arrangement with publishers AgMedia Inc. that provides a free subscription to each OFA member.
In a separate hearing Thursday, a similar status was also granted to the smaller Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario. BF
General farm accreditation archive