December 16, 2022 (Regina, SK) – The Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan (APAS) held its General Meeting in Saskatoon December 8 & 9. Some of the key messages for the meeting included governance renewal, reinvigorated partnerships especially with the universities and research centres, and the future of the livestock industry.

“Good governance is the foundation for every organization. APAS needs to look at and incorporate best practices in our governance in order to ensure sustainability, success, and effectiveness as we move forward,” APAS President Ian Boxall said. “It’s critically important for our organization as we focus on expanding our membership to have more transparency, accountability, participation and engagement in everything we do.”

Boxall also stresses APAS remains the only farm organization in Saskatchewan that is 100% dedicated to farm and ranch family success. “We are completely funded by farmers. This ensures that our focus is always on farm and ranch success.”

Overall, APAS members passed 19 resolutions at the General Meeting. Some of the highlights coming out of the meeting include APAS examining what is driving rising fertilizer, fuel, and chemical inputs, APAS’ examination and support the development of a cow/calf production insurance program, and an investigation into the proposed fertilizer emission reduction strategy from the federal government and investigate the methodological and scientific foundation of this initiative. A complete list of policy resolutions can be found here.

“Resolutions are the most important work APAS conducts throughout the year,” Boxall said. “Throughout District Meetings, Committee Meetings, and several consultations and conversations we have throughout the year, we develop these resolutions to take agricultural issues from the grassroots and put them in front of policy makers to make positive change in Saskatchewan and in Canada.”

A key focus going into 2023 will be engaging our universities and research centres to enhance APAS’s capacity to address farm-gate problems with innovative Saskatchewan-based solutions.

“Reinvigorating our partnerships with our universities will enhance our ability to create policy solutions for current and future farm issues that our members are bringing forward,” Boxall noted.

One of the current issues is the future of Saskatchewan’s livestock industry. This was a notable reoccurring issue raised by members across the province during the meeting.

“The livestock industry is experiencing a heard decline over the past number of years. As this happens, a lot of perennial forage and grasslands are being converted to cropland. This will have a negative environmental impact as well as reduce the market for feed grains,” emphasized Boxall. “Our members are calling for a livestock summit that brings together various groups to discuss and identify solutions that will help ensure success for livestock producers."

As part of the meeting, Board elections occurred, and the 2023 Board Executive were elected. Ian Boxall remains President of APAS for another term, while Bill Prybylski will remain a Vice-President. Bev Pirio has been elected by the board as Vice-President.

“It’s an honour to be elected to the Executive by my peers on the Board,” Pirio said. “I am excited to work on behalf of Saskatchewan farmers to help resolve farm issues.”

Kevin Gilbert (RM of Arlington #79) and Devon Walker (RM of Wilton #472) became new members of the board. A complete list of Board Members can be found here.

Read more: APAS wraps up General Meeting in Saskatoon news release