SASKATOON, Saskatchewan, June 27, 2014 – The Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan (ACS) Inc. elected a new Board Chair, a new director and announced the commitment of over $2.87 million to Canada’s agriculture and agri-food sector at the Annual General Meeting, which was held on June 26, 2014 in Saskatoon.

Dr. Michael Nickerson of the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Agriculture and Bioresources was elected the new Chair of the Board of Directors. Allen Kuhlman, who represented the Saskatchewan Flax Development Commission and has served as Chair of the Board of Directors for the past three years, retired from the Board after serving two terms.

“The contributions Allen made at the Board table and in committees were invaluable,” said Dr. Nickerson. “He has served ACS for the better part of six years, and his insight and experience within the industry allowed ACS to make decisions that brought great benefit to agriculture in Saskatchewan. We wish him well in the next phase of his life and future endeavors. We would be remiss if we did not also thank Susan, Allen’s wife, for allowing him to be away on many occasions and countless hours to carry out business on behalf of ACS.”

Norm Hall of the Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan was elected to the Board of Directors, while Clinton Monchuk of the Chicken Farmers of Saskatchewan was re-elected. Monchuk will serve as Vice-Chair while Kirk Flaman of the Saskatchewan Seed Potato Growers Association, who will remain as the Secretary/Treasurer. Gordon Schroeder of the Saskatchewan Sheep Development Board, Wayne Truman of the Saskatchewan Canola Development Commission and Dan Prefontaine of the Saskatchewan Food Industry Development Centre remain on the Board of Directors.

ACS also paid tribute to staff member Christine Colborne, who will be retiring as Levy Records Manager with the Levy Central program after 19 years. “Christine is one of the instrumental reasons the program has been so successful and grown over the years,” said former Chair Allen Kuhlmann. “Christine’s hard work ethic, dedication, commitment to ACS and the Levy Central Clients she served, cannot be understated.”

At the AGM, Executive Director Blair Goldade reported that the ACS Board of Directors approved 44 projects for a funding commitment of $1,225,846 through the Canadian Agricultural Adaptation Program (CAAP) in the 2013-2014 fiscal year. ACS delivered the CAAP program in Saskatchewan on behalf of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Under the five year CAAP program, which ended on March 31, 2014, 214 projects were approved in Saskatchewan for a commitment of over $14.3 million.

ACS also announced that $1.64 million was committed to 16 projects under the Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food Saskatchewan (ACAAFS). The ACAAFS program, which was the precursor to CAAP, had $2.2 million uncommitted funds remaining as of the end of 2013. $450,000 of ACAAFS funding remains uncommitted and ACS is currently accepting applications for agriculture and agri-food projects. The application deadline is July 14, 2014.

Over the last 20 years, ACS funded 1483 projects for almost $56.5 million through AAFC programs. All of this funding was directed towards the advancement and growth of the agriculture and agri-food sector in the province.