TORONTO, July 26, 2013 /CNW/ - Dairy Farmers of Canada's President,
Wally Smith is extremely pleased with the successful Annual Meeting
this week: "We made significant progress in our commitment to
sustainability, had successful meetings, interesting speakers and great hospitality, along with wonderful Canadian dairy treats."
The DFC Annual Meeting in Toronto focused on branding and marketing
dairy products and farmers. Keynote speaker and marketing specialist
Terry O'Reilly discussed the power of branding and how it helps people
differentiate a product from its competitors. "Branding is about
creating a relationship. Stories can make people feel something; they
increase the value your product," he said.
Tony Johnstone from the DDB advertising agency talked about the
importance of 'proudly-Canadian' and 'local' as supporting drivers in
the current Canadian marketing context, with examples drawn from
various Canadian brands. These trends help build on existing strengths
to enhance Canadian dairy products.
On the same panel, British Columbia dairy farmer Tom Hoogendoorn brought
the branding concept home to the farm. "This is about leveraging the
farmers' values, sharing our story with Canadians when we see them," he
said. The 100% Canadian Milk brand is a strong one. He stressed that it
is worth understanding its true nature and remain authentic and proud,
as he shared with the audience various ways he found to brand Canadian
dairy on his farm, in his community, in the industry and on social
media. This panel was a good continuation of the previous days'
presentation on current and proposed marketing activities.
Farmers heard updates about the ongoing traceability and animal care
projects. The delegates also discussed and adopted a 10-year plan to
develop and implement the proAction Initiative, which brings together
existing and new programs related to on-farm practices covering food
safety and quality, animal care, environment, traceability and
biosecurity. With this Initiative, farmers will show their commitment
to society and strengthen the Canadian dairy brand.
DFC also recognized a 200-year old family farm with the Dairy Farm Sustainability Award. Sylvain Laquerre, Noëlline Dusablon and their son Benoit were present
in person to accept the prize from DFC and the award sponsor DeLaval
Inc. - Canada.
Later in the day, delegates passed a motion to reiterate their
appreciation for the Canadian government's continued defense of supply
management in international trade talks, notably CETA and TPP, showing
they keep monitoring these developments.
By-laws were also amended to be compliant with the new Canada Not For Profit Corporations Act. At the meeting, Wally Smith was acclaimed to a second 2-year term as
President. At a board meeting following the meeting, four
Vice-Presidents were elected: David Wiens (Manitoba), Ron Versteeg
(Ontario), Bruno Letendre (Québec) and Reint-Jan Dykstra (New
The Board also appointed its Promotion Committee: Bill Emmott (Ontario),
Chairman, Pierre Lampron (Québec), Ron Maynard (Prince-Edward Island)
and David Wiens (Manitoba).
A research symposium followed yesterday with well-known scientists
bringing results to dairy farmers of the research and extension work,
financed by farmers and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Growing
Forward over the last four years.
SOURCE: Dairy Farmers of Canada (Corporate)
For further information:
Assistant Director, Strategic Communications
Dairy Farmers of Canada