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News

Monday, 11 April 2016 14:50

Family Farmers Wanted For Survey

"Canadian family farms in the twenty-first century" aims to better understand how well the term "family farm" applies today and how family farms contribute to the Canadian economy, communities, and politics. The research will be conducted by doctoral candidate Chantal Clement, with Drs. Irena Knezevic and Kelly Bronson out of Carleton University in Ottawa and St Thomas University in NB. They are interested in speaking to Canadian farmers over the age of 18, whose farms fit the designation of a "family farm". (A family farm is any farm not managed by a commune, co-operative, or a non-family corporation). 

The questions asked will consist in understanding some of the day-to-day activities on your farm, the importance you place on the ideas and values around "family farming", and changes or experiences you may have on the broader Canadian agricultural landscape or in your community. The interview should last about 30-45 minutes over the phone and they are offering a modest $20 gift card as a small thank you to each participant. If you have any questions or insights, please contact Chantal at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (613)862-2588.


Friday, 08 April 2016 13:19

2016 SOIL Apprenticeship Program

Dream of farming? Learn from the experts, real farmers

Join SOIL Apprenticeships today!
 
What is SOIL?
 
• A non profit program, that links farmers with young folks wanting to learn and work on an
organic farm using sustainable practices. We aim to create apprenticeships which transfer
lasting knowledge to both the farmer and the apprentice.
• The host farms that list with SOIL, are farms which emphasis organic techniques with little
or no dependence on pesticides, herbicides, or fungicides. Beyond that they represent a
wide variety of focus and practices; from market garden businesses, biodynamic farms,
animal husbandry operations of all sizes, orchards, seed companies to name a few.
Whatever your operation there is someone out there who wants to learn from you!
 
Monday, 04 April 2016 13:32

Now Hiring Administrative Assistant

Thank you everyone for applying! We were overwhelmed by the quantity, and especially the quality of the applications received. We are happy to say that the position has been filled. Watch our website for more details coming up!

We are looking for a dynamic person to provide administrative support to the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative. You will report directly to the Program Manager and work closely with the entire team. This is a 4 hours per day, 6-month term position, starting as soon as possible. 

Employment Opportunity: Prairie Organic Grain Initiative Administrative Assistant

Organization: Organic Alberta

Location: Edmonton

Are you passionate about organic food and interested in helping Prairie farmers to be more successful on their farms? Are you friendly, out-going and well organized? Are you able to juggle multiple projects with superb accuracy? Would you like to work in a place where your contributions will be appreciated and celebrated? We are looking for someone with strong administrative, problem solving and member service skills who can maintain a sense of humour no matter what level of chaos is going on around them. Someone who is smart, flexible, fun and creative. Is that you? Then we want to hear from you!

About the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative:

The Prairie Organic Grain Initiative is a $2.2 Million 4-year program which began in October 2014 and is aimed at achieving growth in the organic grain sector of the Canadian Prairies, while simultaneously building resiliency and stability. The program focuses on increasing both the quantity and quality of organic field crops while building strong market relationships. The program is housed by Organic Alberta, however, it is a partnership across the entire organic sector and between the organic associations in each province. Organic Alberta is working closely with Sask Organics, Manitoba Organic Alliance, Certified Organic Associations of BC, The Canada Organic Trade Association, The Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada and USC Canada through The Bauta Family Initiative on Canadian Seed Security as well as with producers, grain buyers, processors, certification bodies and major organic brands to develop and deliver programming. The Initiative is truly an industry wide project.

About Organic Alberta:

Organic Alberta is the housing organization for the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative. Within Alberta we represent and support Alberta's entire organic industry, while across the Prairies we deliver programs, in partnership with other provincial partners, related to seed security and grain production. We serve all certified organic and transitioning producers and processors, as well as businesses across the value chain including but not limited to distribution, transportation, brokers and buyers, marketers, organic brands, certifiers, inputs, seed, feed, and retailers.

Role:

We are looking for a dynamic person to provide administrative support to the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative. You will report directly to the Program Manager and work closely with the entire team. This is a 4 hours per day, 6-month term position, starting as soon as possible.

Duties and Responsibilities:

 Event Support, such as

o booking locations, arranging catering, other logistics related to organizing workshops, field days and other events,
o creating forms,
o promotion of events,
o data entry, other event follow-up.

 General Program Support, such as

o Co-ordinating monthly stakeholder teleconference calls (eg registrations, sending out notices, taking minutes, circulating minutes, other follow-up activities),
o Co-ordinating printing, mailings,
o Manage Requests for Proposals (RFP) including finding potential contractors, creating RFP (with program staff), sending out RFP, following up with companies, etc.,
o Manage logistical relationships with contractors (eg creating, updating contracts),
o Manage contact lists,
o Book travel, accommodation, etc as required,
o General clerical duties including answering telephone and other tasks,
o Other duties as required.

Required experience and qualifications:

• A business or secretarial school diploma, or equivalent experience.
• A minimum of 3 years' practical administrative experience,
• Computer savvy with experience working with email, MS Word and Excel. Experience with Insightly and/or MailChimp would be an asset,
• Excellent written and verbal communication skills,
• Strong attention to detail and excellent organizational skills,
• Agronomic experience and/or knowledge of organic production practices is an asset but not required,
• Experience in the not for profit sector will be an asset,
• An interest in organic food and agriculture is a must.

Salary will be commensurate with experience and competitive within the not for profit sector. This is a 6 month position, 4 hours per day. Does this sound like your dream job? Are you ready to join an amazing team? Then we can't wait to meet you!

Please send a detailed C.V., including a full cover letter telling us when you can start to: Debbie Miller, Executive Office Manager, Organic Alberta Council: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . The position is open until filled.

Wednesday, 23 March 2016 10:04

Now Hiring Summer Students!

Organic Alberta and the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative are looking for 4 outgoing, self-motivated, highly organized people to join our team as summer students.

The Client Relationship Coordinator will help us to improve our service to our members by managing the member databases, including integrating data from various excel spreadsheets and MailChimp into our Client Relationship Management software.

The Summer Event Coordinator will work with us to organize more amazing workshops and programs to serve the local organic and farming community.

The Communications Coordinator will have a background in communications and will provide communications support to our activities, including working on the website.

The Program Coordinator will provide general support to all the activities of the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative.

Application deadline is April 22, 2016

 

 

 

Tuesday, 08 March 2016 17:48

Organic Crop Insurance

Deadline to Apply - April 30, 2016
Insurance coverage is now available to certified organic producers as part of AFSC’s Annual Crop Insurance Program. The development of this program was a collaborative effort between AFSC and Organic Alberta. Organic insurance will work like AFSC’s standard production insurance programs. The exception is that certified organic producers will no longer be assessed for uninsured causes of loss, provided the producer follows the guidelines established by the Organic Standard and the Insuring Agreement.

NEW COMMENT PERIOD – March 7 to April 7 2016

Questions and Answers Regarding National Standards for Organic Agriculture

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency, in partnership with the Organic Federation of Canada, has developed the Organic Standards Interpretation Committee (SIC).

The objective of the Committee is to provide, to the Canada Organic Office, interpretive guidance on issues related to the National Standards for Organic Agriculture (CAN/CGSB 32.310 and CAN/CGSB32.311).

Below are proposed answers to questions, raised by organic stakeholders, regarding the National Standards for Organic Agriculture. The proposed responses are subject to a 30 day comment period. All comments regarding these answers should be sent to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Click here to consult the proposed answers to the questions raised by stakeholders.

· Is copper sulphate allowed as a treatment for fence-posts on pasture? (9)

· Under section 7.5.5 d. of 32.310 (Greenhouse crops), how should the soil volume of 70 L/M2 be defined and how should the total growing area be defined? (286)

· Under section 7.5.5 a) of 32.310, is the requirement of 10% compost by weight or by volume? (287)

· Under section 7.5.5 c. of 32.310, what does the container height of 12 inches mean? (288)

· What is the definition of biodegradability as it pertains to the Canadian Organic Standards? (263)

· Are bioplastic mulches, made from corn, accepted as "biodegradable films" that can be left to decompose in the soil? (79) (253)

· Can a non-organic agricultural substance such as whey be used as the growing media to manufacture probiotics used as a feed supplement or as an ingredient for food? (252)

· Is electrolysed water allowed by the Canada Organic Standards? (290)

The proposed responses are subject to a 30 day comment period. All comments regarding these answers should be sent to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Report: Comment period January-February 2016

The report on the Comment period held from January 15 to February 15 2016 is now available - contact us for a copy. 

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