Many of the issues people working in Canadian agriculture faced for the majority of 2020 will continue for at least the next six to nine months. Social distancing and limitations on face-to-face business activities will continue until most citizens that seek to be vaccinated have successfully done so.
Canadian agriculture responded efficiently and effectively to the disruptions created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Business carried on throughout the supply chain to ensure spring planting was completed on time and harvest completed without undue delay, but not without trepidation and sacrifice.
Adjustments and cancellations occurred with many agriculture trade shows and tours, forcing organizers to seek novel means to deliver through virtual events. These relied heavily on technology and at times there was frustration from the lack of high-speed internet connectivity in
It remains to be seen if the new wave of virtual meetings, trade shows and tours will be the new ag information-transfer standard, a short-term anomaly or an evolving hybrid moving forward. Will we see the return of in-person events? The social aspect of these events remains popular with farmers and will continue to be. How this is accomplished remains to be identified.
We are a week away from the 2021 Virtual CAAR Conference: Educate. Engage. Evolve., followed by the 2021 Virtual CAAR AGM hosted in early spring. CAAR has had to evolve as well as a result of COVID-19 restrictions and we are excited to provide platforms that increase the ability for a larger diverse audience.
Canadian agriculture production, including plant breeder rights, sustainable production practice evidence, traceability, carbon taxes, input usage and production practice reviews, tariffs and market access disruptions and social opinion vs science-based regulations will continue to experience aggressive review and oversight by parties at regional, national and international levels.
Canadian agriculture will be at a crossroads in 2021. What is critical is ensuring the voices of the Canadian agriculture industry are heard. Farmers, ag retailers, manufacturers and suppliers will be directly impacted by proposed legislations in development and at public consultations.
At stake is the global competitiveness of Canadian agriculture production. As an export nation, we are a price taker of ag commodities. This includes grains, oilseeds and fertilizers. We do not have the luxury to pass added costs onto consumers and export customers.
There is an opportunity for the ag industry to influence direction. My challenge to all members and the ag retail industry is to become engaged with CAAR, ensuring your input is heard and captured to direct solutions that work for all levels of agriculture production. The opportunity is now. CAAR needs you today.
I look forward to speaking with you directly and
hearing your comments and requests.
Executive Director, CAAR
How can ag retailers become better engaged with CAAR?
- Become a member of CAAR
- Participate on one of the CAAR committees. Share your opinion and knowledge and help direct the association
- Become a board member. CAAR members can nominate you to stand for election to one of the open CAAR board seats
- Talk to a CAAR board member or staff to share critical issues affecting your ag retail business
- Advise CAAR staff of business activities that could be featured in the CAAR Communicator
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