David and Vicki Francis and their son Bret of David Francis Farm of Lady Fane, P.E.I. are the 2017 winners of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association Environmental Stewardship Award. The family has invested heavily in soil conservation on its potato and beef operation building grassed waterways, buffer zones, terraces and berms to reduce erosion. Their rotational grazing system and annual applications of composted manure added organic matter to improve the water-holding capacity and nutrient levels in the soil. David and Brett are active participants in P.E.I.’s Environmental Farm Plan and Alternative Land Use Services program.
Dr. Karen Schwartzkopf-Genswein, a senior research scientist at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Lethbridge, Alta., is the 2017 recipient of the Canadian Beef Industry Award for Outstanding Research and Innovation. She also holds adjunct appointments at several universities. Her research has made contributions to early disease detection in cattle, feeding behaviour, stress assessment, and acidosis, and been instrumental in advancing practices related to beef cattle transportation, lameness and pain mitigation. Her research results have guided the industry in updating Canadian transport regulations and the Canadian Beef Code of Practice. She also sits on several national and international committees that set standards for on-farm auditing of health and welfare practices in beef cattle.
Greg Penner, an associate professor at the University of Saskatchewan, was one of three recipients of the 2017 American Society of Animal Science Early Career Achievement Award for his research related to acidosis, volatile fatty acid absorption and functionality of the gastrointestinal tract in ruminant animals. In 2014 he was appointed Centennial Enhancement Chair in Ruminant Nutritional Physiology at the U of S. The ASAS Early Career Achievement Award recognizes the achievements of young scholars working toward the mission of ASAS.
Marty Carpenter, the former director of the Canadian Beef Centre of Excellence, has been elected president of the board of directors of the Canadian Beef Grading Agency in Calgary. The vice-president is Robert Bielak of St. Helen’s Meat Packers Ltd. of Toronto. Carpenter replaces Willie Van Solkema, the former president of JBS Canada, and Bielak replaces Andre Roy, the new director general of Les Producteurs de bovines du Québec. The agency is expected to adopt the USDA’s five yield grade standard as soon as Ottawa passes the Safe Food for Canadians regulations which will authorize the agency to alter its grade standards without amending the regulations.
British Columbia beef producer Linda Allison will serve a second term as chair of the board of directors of Canadian Beef Cattle Research Market Development and Promotion Agency, the industry-run organization that oversees the Canadian Beef Check-off Agency and the marketing division, Canada Beef. Heinz Reimer of Manitoba remains on the executive committee as vice-chair, joined by committee chairs, Lonnie Lake of Sysco Canada in finance; Larry Weatherby of Nova Scotia on governance, Mike Kennedy from Cargill, on market development and promotion, and Alberta’s Doug Sawyer, the Canadian Beef Cattle Check-Off committee.
The Cattlemen’s Young Leaders program has announced its mentoring list for 2018. The 16 young producers will receive a $2,000 travel budget and the opportunity to be mentored by industry experts in their chosen field of interest over the next several months. The finalists are:
- British Columbia: Taylor Grafton, Alecia Karapita, Andrea Haywood-Farmer, Carley Henninger.
- Alberta: Ashely Gaudet, Matt Kumlin, Ben Wilson, Lee Creech, James Jenkins, Melissa Lee, Cale Toews, Lacey McCrae.
- Saskatchewan: Quin Anderson Folk, Kaitlyn Polegi, Allan Hjertaas.
- Manitoba: Rachel Verwey.
Ellen Crane, of Murray Siding, N.S., the general manager of the Maritime Beef Council, is one of four Nuffield Canada scholars named for 2018 (see our story pg. 43). The other finalists are Josh Oulton of Taproot Farms, Port Williams, N.S., studying the growing of high-quality flax fibre for long-line linen processing; Gavin Robertson with the Niagara College Teaching Winery studying the content of international viticulture training programs; and Shelley Spruitt of Against the Grain Farms near Mountain, Ont., who is focussed on the restoration of ancient grains to produce value-added products and whole grains and flour.
Carrie Cholack is joining the Elanco Animal Health beef sales team for southern Alberta. She spent 14 years with Farm Credit Canada as credit manager and senior relationship manager primarily dealing with alliances for livestock financing.
Erin Kishkan of Pinnacle View Limousin in Quesnel, B.C. is the new president of the Canadian Limousin Association. Joining her on the board are vice-president Eric Boon from Saskatchewan and treasurer Bill Zwambag from Ontario along with directors Dan Darling, Matthew Heleniak and Mike Geddes from Ontario, Cody Miller and Tim Andrew from Alberta and Joe Cooper from N.S.