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Merger will create a substantial new organization

The new group would represent 8,000 Manitoba farmers and 40 per cent of annual crop acres

If the proposed merger of five crops organizations goes ahead next year, it’s going to create a new force to be reckoned with, according to consultant Rob Hannam of Synthesis Agri-Food Network.

A tie-up of the Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers Association (MWBGA), Manitoba Corn Growers Association (MCGA), Manitoba Flax Growers Association (MFGA), National Sunflower Association of Canada (NSAC) and Winter Cereals Manitoba Inc. would represent 8,000 Manitoba farmers and 40 per cent of the province’s annual crop acres, he told a webinar Jan. 15.

The groups plan to keep their combined staff at the current eight employees.

“At this point we don’t see the need to increase the staff,” Hannam said. “But there will be a transitioning process and a shifting of roles and opportunities for advancement as we get going with the organization.”

The new organization would be led by a chief executive officer and a chief operating officer.

There would be four departments: research and production, communications, finance and administration and market development.

Research and production would account for 67 per cent of spending, market development 12 per cent, communications five per cent and administration 16 per cent.

Hannam said the new organization expects to have a seven per cent budget surplus in its first year of operation.

About the author

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Allan Dawson is a reporter with the Manitoba Co-operator based near Miami, Man. Covering agriculture since 1980, Dawson has spent most of his career with the Co-operator except for several years with Farmers’ Independent Weekly and before that a Morden-Winkler area radio station.

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