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Vol. 103 No. 7


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Barn fires spark focus on prevention

Farm tours Agriculture’s success a measure of investment funding Dairy

Deep roots give Shannon Farm bright future


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The agricultural news source in British Columbia since 1915 JULY 2017 | Vol. 103 No. 7

Poultry abuse underscores need to

measure up

Industry standards not being met

by PETER MITHAM CHILLIWACK – Another horrific case of

livestock abuse uncovered by the activist group Mercy for Animals highlights gaps in the farm sector’s animal protection protocols.

A video delivered to the BC SPCA on June 9 and released to media June 12 shows chicken catchers from Elite Farm Services Ltd. abusing poultry at various farms in the Fraser Valley. The shocking acts run from physical abuse to sexual assault and dismemberment. An investigation by the BC SPCA, which polices animal cruelty on behalf of the province, is ongoing. Marcie Moriarty, chief prevention and

Green with envy! With over 7,000 tickets for 4-H BC’s Gator Lottery sold all over BC, what were the odds one of the winners would be in the audience as tickets were drawn at Davison Orchards in Vernon, June 10? Lillian Stewart was volunteering at the pancake breakfast with granddaughters Ashlee and Allison McAvoy, from the Milkyway 4-H Dairy Club, when her name was drawn. The girls sold Gramma Lillian 14 tickets – but she only needed one to win the John Deere. CATHY GLOVER PHOTO

Growing more with less water

enforcement officer with the BC SPCA, expects to recommend Crown counsel to lay charges against six individuals. Elite terminated a supervisor and three staff as a result of the video; two other persons of interest had already been fired. No arrests

See INVESTIGATION on next page o Political uncertainty creates angst

by TAMARA LEIGH VICTORIA – It’s not every

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year that agriculture features in the throne speech, but no opportunity to score a point has been missed as the political drama of the May 9 provincial election unfolded in the BC legislature on June 22.

“We’re happy to hear that

agriculture was actually named in the throne speech,” says Stan Vander Waal, chair of the BC Agriculture Council. “It might have something to do with the fact that that the

agriculture sector exceeded expectations by about $1 billion this past year.” Norm Letnick agrees. The

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA was reappointed minister of agriculture on June 12. “Agriculture has been getting more attention over the past couple of years. It’s testament to the numbers that industry is putting forward,” he told Country Life in BC, referring – as he did throughout the election campaign – to record employment and cash receipts. “All these great

economic numbers continue to reinforce the message to the people with the finger on the treasury that agriculture is a big contributor to the economy and jobs.” Among the many promises in the throne speech was a commitment to establish a select standing committee for agriculture, something both BCAC and the BC NDP have urged in the past. Curiously, the committee didn’t figure in the official list of standing committees released

See PROMISE on next page o

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