The Manitoba Flax Growers Association (MFGA) has found a new home.
The provincial flax organization was previously headquartered in Winnipeg at the Flax Council of Canada’s office, but the Flax Council closed its doors at the end of January.
As of March 1, 2018, the provincial flax organization will have its operations and programming administered by the Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers (MPSG) in Carman.
“We believe this is a great opportunity for us to continue to provide good service to members and create operational efficiencies to ensure best use of our financial resources,” says MFGA chair Eric Fridfinnson in a news release on Monday. “We want to thank Francois Labelle, his staff and the board of Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers for providing this opportunity. We look forward to working with them in this new arrangement.”
He also thanked Monika Haley for administering the organization over the past several years.
The MPSG office building in Carman is also home to Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers, Manitoba Corn Growers and the National Sunflower Association of Canada.
Manitoba Flax says the move to join the commodity hub in Carman is not related to the proposed amalgamation of the five commodity groups, which will be discussed during each of the organization’s annual meetings at the CropConnect Conference in Winnipeg this week.
As for MPSG’s staffing, executive director Francois Labelle says their office has capacity to administer the flax group.
“We assessed MFGA’s needs, and with MPSG hiring Financial Manager Melissa Denys-Roulette, we felt we could handle the additional workload on a cost recovery basis without any major increase in staffing,” he says. “We have also been working on improving some of the reporting functions such as check-off collection, which will decrease data-inputting demands and be more efficient.”
Meanwhile, the Flax Council of Canada has said it will “continue to operate on a reduced service basis” without an office. It has not said what that will look like, but there have been discussions with the Canola Council of Canada about having the canola industry group maintain the flax council’s books.