Top Crop Manager

Features Business & Policy World Outlook
Today marks the 32nd anniversary of World Food Day

October 15, 2012, Calgary, AB - Agriculture for Life, an Alberta-based not for profit organization dedicated to building a greater understanding and appreciation of agriculture, says World Food Day needs to be celebrated throughout Alberta every day.

“Our approach is to put in place educational programs throughout Alberta that improve the public’s understanding of the agriculture industry and develop better appreciation for the value of food and where it comes from,” says David Sprague, CEO of Ag for Life.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012 marks the 32nd anniversary of World Food Day. It was originally organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in 1980, to heighten public awareness of the world food problem and strengthen solidarity in the struggle against hunger, malnutrition and poverty.

“We have a good news agriculture story to tell,” says Doug Beever, chairman of Ag for Life’s Board of Directors, and Agrium Inc.’s Senior Director, Sustainability & Stakeholder Relations. “Today’s farmer is producing 300 per cent more food than in 1950, on less land and with fewer resources. Canadian agriculture is the third largest contributor to our Gross Domestic Product. We all need to support agriculture’s efforts and contributions in feeding an ever growing population.”

The World Food Day theme for 2012 is “Agricultural cooperatives – key to feeding the world”. FAO chose to highlight the role of cooperatives in improving food security and contributing to the eradication of hunger. The UN General Assembly also designated 2012 the “International Year of Cooperatives” to highlight interest in cooperatives and rural organizations.

Jim Watt is chief governance officer for Alberta’s largest agricultural cooperative, UFA Co-operative Limited, and Ag for Life Board Director. “UFA has been living proof for more than 100 years that the co- operative model works; a key reason we succeed is because our members know we can achieve greater success as a whole rather than individually. Co-operatives are differentiated in business because of the strong commitment to the community and the common good,” says Watt.

Ag for Life will officially celebrate agriculture and its importance to Albertans with the renewal of the annual Harvest Gala, scheduled for Saturday, November 3rd, 2012 at the BMO Centre on Stampede Park in Calgary, Alberta. The event will bring together all voices, both rural and urban, interested in investing in agriculture’s future and elevating the fundamental importance of a strong and sustainable food producing community. Tickets can be purchased online at www.agricultureforlife.ca or by calling the 4H of Foundation of Alberta at 1-877-682-2153.

About Ag for Life
Ag for Life has a mandate to deliver educational programming designed to improve rural and farm safety and build a genuine understanding and appreciation of the impact agriculture has on lives. The organization brings together various sectors including agri-services, energy, financial and not-for-profit organizations, along with farmers, ranchers and community leaders.

Ag for Life is made possible through the funding and commitment of companies that employ almost 20,000 people in more than 350 Alberta communities. Founding Members include Agrium Inc., ATB Financial, ATCO Group, Penn West Exploration, Rocky Mountain Equipment, TransCanada Corporation and UFA Co-operative Limited. Contributing Members include AdFarm, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – Government of Alberta, Glacier Media Group and Mosaic Studios.

Find out more at www.agricultureforlife.ca.