Ontario Agriculture

The network for agriculture in Ontario, Canada

The CFFO Commentary: Tackling Agricultural Challenges Aided Through Leadership Training

By John Clement

October 1, 2010

I appreciate good leadership. Good leaders have a way of focusing people on critical issues and helping them to work together on finding solutions. Sometimes that involves pioneering a new way of doing things and forcing people to react, while at other times it involves pushing others from behind to bring forward important ideas. There are as many styles of leadership as there are leaders.

Leadership is particularly important in agriculture. A cursory look at farming shows a multitude of commodity and interest groups containing a multitude of opinions about how to move their industries forward. The challenges are multiple and need to bridge subjects as diverse as marketing strategies, communications, relationships with processors and government, and public affairs. Without leadership on these issues, the multitude of voices within agriculture can quickly become a cacophony that quickly descends into inaction and ineffectiveness.

With that perspective in mind, I’m particularly keen on some of the leadership initiatives being offered by the Rural Ontario Institute. Officially launched on April 1 of this year, the ROI “has a mandate to provide rural leadership development and focus on multi-stakeholder engagement for the purposes of engaging rural stakeholders and developing and delivering community engagement strategies; securing and communicating ground intelligence on rural issues; and informing decision makers on rural issues.” It was created through an amalgamation of The Centre for Rural Leadership and The Ontario Rural Council.

The ROI has jumped from the starting gate with three core programs. They include the highly effective Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program, Steps to Leadership and Personal Development Workshops and Seminars. Although all of these programs are important, the AALP program is the centerpiece and features a 48-day program delivered over the course of 19 months. It combines instruction, distance education, international travel and dialogue with business, government, industry and community leaders. Studies show an impressive 11 to 1 payback for agriculture for leadership programs like AALP.

My bet is that the ROI has a few more tricks up its sleeve and will offer even more targeted leadership training opportunities in the future. Those looking for leadership training should check out their website at www.ruralontarioinstitute.ca for announcements and opportunities. And with Class 13 of the AALP program close to graduating, it’s not too early to consider whether you, or someone you might recommend, might be interested in participating in this unique training program.

As I mentioned earlier, Ontario agriculture needs good leaders to meet the challenges of the day. Groups like the ROI make the task of training leaders much more manageable.

John Clement is the General Manager of the Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario. The CFFO Commentary represents the opinions of the writer and does not necessarily represent CFFO policy. The CFFO Commentary is heard weekly on CFCO Chatham, CKNX Wingham, Ontario and is archived on the CFFO website: www.christianfarmers.org. CFFO is supported by 4,353 family farmers across Ontario.

Views: 24


You need to be a member of Ontario Agriculture to add comments!

Join Ontario Agriculture

Agriculture Headlines from Farms.com Canada East News - click on title for full story

Smaller Crops Likely in StatsCan Survey-Based Report

Already small 2021 Canadian crops are likely to be revised even lower when Statistics Canada releases its final crop production report of the season on Friday. Prior reports in September and August were compiled using satellite imagery, with the December report the first of the year to utilize farmer surveys.

Old-Crop Canola Holds Gains as Crude Falls Back

Canola futures saw increases in the old-crop months on Wednesday, while new crop positions closed slightly lower. Support for edible oils from strong upticks in global crude oil prices evaporated by the close of the grain markets, which weakened edible oils.

The Maple Syrup Reserve: Serving its Purpose in a Time of High Demand

The substantial and ongoing growth of maple syrup sales and exports, combined with an average yield in the 2021 production season, has raised concerns in several media outlets about a potential shortage of supply. Québec Maple Syrup Producers (QMSP) wishes to reassure the public that demand, both domestic and international, will be met through the Global Strategic Maple Syrup Reserve. QMSP established its strategic maple syrup reserve in 2000 to respond to this exact situation. When production exceeds demand (as was the case in the two previous years), the surplus maple syrup is warehoused. Conversely, when the harvest is weaker than current demand (such as this year), the syrup stockpile is offered for sale to buyers. The Global Reserve is therefore serving its important purpose, ensuring a constant supply to the domestic and international markets, regardless the success of any single year's harvest. Furthermore, it stabilizes the product's price, eliminating variations caused by st

Canola Fails to Hang onto Early Gains

Canola futures pulled back on Monday, after rallying to new contract highs during the overnight session. Downward pressure came from the liquidation of the January contract as well as market concerns over the new Omicron strain of COVID-19. Losses in the Chicago soy complex and European rapeseed also weighed on values, while those for Malaysian palm oil were mixed.

Bringing robots to field crops

THE LATEST IN cutting-edge robotics is coming to a field near you — sooner than you think. A new team of in-field innovation enthusiasts have been working diligently over the past year to test, demonstrate, and troubleshoot robotic applications in a variety of Ontario crops, bringing the reality of robots within reach for farmers within this decade. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW • Each robot model tested was unique, with some powered by batteries and others by diesel. • Some robots struggled to work effectively in areas with heavy crop residue or cover crops. • Researchers note there are only a handful of working robotic units in North America, and since Ontario offers such a wide range of crops and growing conditions, we have the ideal environment for testing these systems. • Soil sampling is another task that autonomous robots could shoulder for farmers and agronomists.

© 2021   Created by Darren Marsland.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service