The Saskatchewan Canola Development Commission (SaskCanola) and Saskatchewan Flax Development Commission (SaskFlax) are asking for feedback on having SaskCanola assume the mandate of SaskFlax.
SaskCanola has been providing operational support to the SaskFlax board since January of this year. Resolutions were passed at both group’s annual meetings to explore options for potential amalgamation, and an online producer survey has been launched as of July 1.
“As flax is a small acreage crop in Saskatchewan, we think amalgamation would minimize overhead costs for flax producers and better leverage investments opportunities, especially in the areas of policy and research,” says Greg Sundquist, SaskFlax chair, in a news release.
The online survey — which can be found here — will be open until November 17, 2023, with results to be shared at both organization’s annual meetings in January 2024. Votes on amalgamation are also expected to take place at those meetings, according to the amalgamation proposal.
“Both of our respective boards have discussed our potential amalgamation and what the future could look like in terms of synergies,” notes Keith Fournier, SaskCanola chair. “But now we want to know whether growers support this prospect and what concerns they have so that we can properly address them.”
SaskCanola has approximately 17 thousand levy-paying producers, and a mandate to provide value to canola producers through research, advocacy, and market development. The organization collected $4.4 million in check-offs in the 2021-2022 fiscal year, down from $7.5 million in 2020-21.
SaskFlax is supported by around three thousand levy-paying flax growers, and has a mandate to “lead, promote, and enhance the production, value-added processing, and utilization of Saskatchewan flax.” SaskFlax collected $405 thousand in producer check-off fees in 2021-22, down from $818 thousand in 2020-21.