Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

February 14, 2011 12:34 ET

National Future Farmers' Network: Minister Blackburn Follows Up!

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - Feb. 14, 2011) -

Editors Note: A photo for this release is available via Marketwire's website.

At the banquet of the annual meeting of the Canadian Young Farmers' Forum, held in Winnipeg yesterday evening, the Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture), Jean-Pierre Blackburn reaffirmed his commitment to young farmers by announcing the date of the very first of a series of virtual round tables.

This first virtual roundtable follows up on the meeting of the National Future Farmers Network, held last November in Ottawa, which brought together some 45 young farmers from across Canada. This roundtable and the ones to follow will provide an opportunity to continue the dialogue and to develop action plans on young farmers' priorities. This pilot project will involve one representative from each provincial association, as well as the Canadian Young Farmers' Forum, and will take place on March 9, 2011.

"At the time of the Network, I made a commitment to continue the dialogue with young farmers and the virtual roundtable is the concrete result of that commitment. It is innovative and practical, and complements the communication habits of young farmers, who are globally more connected than the average young rural Internet user, as stated in a recent survey on the subject. This virtual meeting will therefore serve as a pilot to test the concept before launching it on a broader scale. It will provide a mechanism that will greatly advance a priority file that our government is proud to support," said Minister Blackburn.

"The Canadian Young Farmers' Forum is pleased to host Minister Blackburn at our 2011 Annual General Meeting. As the national voice for Canadian young farmers, we appreciate the dedication the minister has demonstrated for addressing the challenges of young farmer entry to the sector. We are also excited to share the successes our organization has enjoyed with the minister, and look forward to further developing our working relationship with the minister and the department," said Ian Richardson, Canadian Young Farmers' Forum Chair.

The Canadian Young Farmers' Forum meeting was also an opportunity to release the summary report of the National Future Farmers Network covering the discussions held at that meeting. The report highlights the four main issues raised at the National network held in Ottawa which are access to capital, taxation, the necessity to change the sector's image and the transfer of farm businesses.

"Productive discussions took place with young and beginning farmers at the National Future Farmers Network meeting last fall. This report will be an excellent reference tool which will allow to continue that dialogue", concluded Minister Blackburn. The report will also be useful for ensuring a focus on youth when developing and implementing agricultural policies and programs.

For more information on young and future farmers and to consult the summary report of the meeting of the National Future Farmers Network, please visit

To view the photo associated with this press release, please visit the following link:

Contact Information

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Media Relations
    The Office of the Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn
    Celine Falardeau
    Senior Advisor, Communications