Tagged: agriculture

Better know a Canadian functionary: more officers of the Central Experimental Farm and the Department of Agriculture Science Service

This is a continuation of an earlier post I made on this subject, which you can find here.

In 1886 Parliament authorized the Department of Agriculture to establish a nationwide system of experimental farms to work on ways to improve all aspects of agricultural production in Canada. The main farm was the Central Experimental Farm in Ottawa, which still exists today as a National Historic Site even though the city has long since grown up around the farm and the land must be worth a fortune by now.

The original head of all projects conducted by the Experimental Farms Service was the Dominion Agriculturist, a post originally filled by the Farm’s director, the agricultural chemist William Saunders. The Dominion Agriculturalist was soon after joined by the Dominion Botanist, moved under the Farm’s command from elsewhere in the Department of Agriculture in 1887; the Dominion Chemist, created in 1887; the Dominion Poultry Husbandman, created in 1888; the Dominion Cerealist, created by William Saunders in 1910 for his son Charles; and the Dominion Horticulturalist, which was split off of the Dominion Botanist in 1910.

In 1912, the office of the Dominion Agriculturalist was split into two jobs: the Dominion Animal Husbandman, who handled the raising of animals, and the Dominion Field Husbandman, who handled not only vegetable crops, but also the physical aspects of farms, such as drainage and soil engineering. (“Husbandman” is an archaic word for a farmer, from a lesser-used verb form of “husband” meaning “to manage”.) In that same year, the Dominion Agrostologist was split from the Dominion Botanist to study grasses and other forage crops. The Experimental Farms Service set up a Tobacco Division in 1913, then established the Dominion Apiarist to study bees in 1914. The Farms Service ran its own Extension & Publicity department from 1914 until it was merged into the Department of Agriculture’s publications service in 1935. (“Extension” is the process of educating farmers on technological and scientific advancements.) In 1915, the Farm started an Illustration Stations Service, where ordinary farmers could let the government take over a bit of their land and use the latest crops and techniques in order to show off how much better they were to the surrounding community. Another major new department of the Experimental Farms Service came in 1917, with the Economic Fibre Production Division, concerning the growth of plants used in textile production, such as flax. Finally, the Farm set up a Bacteriology division in 1923 to investigate various diseases and fermentations.

In 1937, the Department of Agriculture expanded its Entomology Branch (founded in 1914) and founded the Science Service for its more laboratory-oriented research interests, moving the Chemistry, Botany and Bacteriology divisions from the Experimental Farms Service and merging the latter with the office of the Dairy and Cold Storage Commissioner to form the Bacteriology & Dairy Research Division. The Science Service was then run separately from the Experimental Farms Service, although the Science Service headquarters was moved to the Central Experimental Farm in 1947.

In the Experimental Farms Service, the Economic Fibre Production division was merged into the Field Husbandry division in 1952, and the Poultry Husbandry division was merged into the Animal Husbandry division in 1957. Finally, in 1959 both the Experimental Farms Service and the Science Service were dissolved and reformed as the Research Division of the Department of Agriculture.

The Directors of the Experimental Farms were:
William Saunders, 1886-1911.
J.H. Grisdale, 1911-19.
Edgar Spinney Archibald, 1919-50.
E.S. Hopkins, 1950-55.
Cyril Harold Goulden, 1955-59.

The Dominion Agriculturalists were:
William Saunders, 1886-90.
James W. Robertson, 1890-96.
William Saunders (acting), 1897-98
J.H. Grisdale, 1899-1912.

The Dominion Poultry Husbandmen were:
A.G. Gilbert, 1888-1913.
F.C. Elford, 1913-37.
G. Robertson, 1937-46.
H.S. Gutteridge, 1946-57.

The Dominion Animal Husbandmen were:
Edgar Spinney Archibald, 1912-20.
George B. Rothwell, 1920-31.
G.W. Muir, 1931-51.
H.K.C.A. Rasmussen, 1951-59.

The Dominion Field Husbandmen were:
J.H. Grisdale, 1912-19.
Edgar Spinney Archibald, 1919-20.
E.S. Hopkins, 1920-46.
P.O. Ripley, 1946-59.

The Chiefs of the Tobacco Division were:
Felix Charlan, 1913-24.
C.M. Slagg, 1924-28.
N.T. Nelson, 1928-46.
Norman MacRae, 1946-59.

The Chiefs of Extension & Publicity for the Experimental Farms Service were:
J.F. Watson, 1914-17.
W.A. Lang, 1917-21.
F.C. Nunnick, 1921-35.

The Supervisors of the Illustration Stations Division were:
John Fixter, 1915-27.
J.C. Moynan, 1928-53.
A.E. Barrett, 1953-59.

The Chiefs of Economic Fibre Production were:
G.G. Bramhill, 1917-18.
R.J. Hutchinson, 1918-52.

The Directors of the Department of Agriculture Science Service were:
J.M. Swaine, 1937-46.
K.W. Neatby, 1946-58.
Robert Glen, 1958-59.

The only Dominion Agricultural Bacteriologist was Allan Grant Lochhead, 1923-37.

The Chiefs of the Bacteriology & Dairy Research Division (Bacteriology Division after 1953) were:
Allan Grant Lochhead, 1937-56.
H. Katznelson, 1956-59.


Better know a Canadian institution: the poultry supply mangement boards

Having looked at dairy and egg supply management boards previously, there are another two federal management boards controlling poultry markets in Canada: one for chicken, and one for turkey. So far as I can tell, the production and sale of duck, goose, pheasant, quail, partridge, squab, grouse, snipe, guinea fowl or woodcock in Canada is governed wholly by the free market.

The Canadian Chicken Marketing Agency (CCMA) was established by order of Eugene Whelan, the agriculture minister, in late 1978, and came into being in 1979. In 1998, it changed its name to  Chicken Farmers of Canada (CFC).

The chairs of CCMA/CFC have been:

Eric Alfred Meek, 1979-80.
Bruce McAninch, 1980-81.
Albert E. Hall, 1981-83.
R.W. Scott, 1983-85.
Arne Mykle, 1985-87.
Dan Lynch, 1987-89.
Laurent Mercier, 1989-91.
Waldie Klassen, 1991-94.
Lloyd Sandercock, 1994-97.
John Kolk, 1997-99.
David Fuller, 1999-2012.
Dave Janzen, 2012-now.

Four years prior, in 1974, that same Eugene Whelan, Minister of Agriculture, established the Canadian Turkey Marketing Agency (CTMA). In the 1980s, the CTMA ran a consumer outreach campaign to push turkey as an everyday food choice, publishing a number of turkey recipes with the slogan “Today’s Special: Turkey”. In 2009, the CTMA changed its name to the Turkey Farmers of Canada (TFC).

The chairs of CTMA/TFC have been:

John Tanchak, 1974.
Murray Brown, 1975.
Eugene Mailloux, 1976.
Cornelius Riediger, 1977.
Ken Crawford, 1978.
Carol Teichrob, 1979.
Eike Futter, 1980-81.
Heiko Oegema, 1982.
William Chrismas, 1983-85.
Art Roder, 1986-89.
Lorne Bustin, 1990.
Adrian de Graaf, 1991-92.
Robert Friesen, 1993-96.
John Stolp, 1997-98.
Darrell Reddekopp, 1999.
Richard Ruckhall, 2000-01.
Walter Nickel, 2002.
Brent Montgomery, 2003-06.
Mark Davies, 2007-now.

Better know a Canadian institution: the egg supply mangement boards

I’ve talked about the Canadian supply management system before – the mechanisms through which the Department of Agriculture controls the supply of certain farm products in Canada. One of those products is eggs; and Canada has not one, but two boards controlling the national egg market.

The Canadian Egg Marketing Agency (CEMA) was established in 1972. From the get-go, CEMA ran a side business of promoting eggs as a health food, starting its famous “Get Cracking” campaign in the mid-1970s. In 1996, the CEMA board of directors, which up to then had been composed solely of egg farmers, was expanded to include representatives of consumer groups and the wider poultry industry. Since 2008, CEMA has adopted the name of the Egg Farmers of Canada (EFC) as its corporate identity.

The chairs of CEMA/EFC have been:

John Hyde, 1972-74.
Phil Eldridge, 1974-75.
Leslie Worsdale, 1975.
John Hyde, 1975-76 (2nd time)(acting)
Jerry Pringle, 1976-78.
Murray McBride, 1978-79.
Harold Crossman, 1979-85.
Stan Steen, 1985-89.
Alex Craig, 1989-90.
Arthur Kenneth “Ken” Tjaden, 1990-94.
George McMillan, 1994-95 (acting)
Robert Murphy, 1995-96 (acting)
Félix Destrijker, 1996-2000.
Laurent Souligny, 2000-2011.
Peter Clarke, 2011-now.

The newest supply management board was founded as the Canadian Broiler Hatching Egg Marketing Agency (CBHEMA) in 1986. Unlike CEMA, which dealt with eggs for consumption, the CBHEMA only dealt with eggs that were intended to hatch into more chickens. It changed its name to the Canadian Hatching Egg Producers (CHEP) in 2007.

The chairs of CBHEMA/CHEP have been:

Ronald Drohomereski, 1986-93.
Vern Crawford, 1993-1995.
Ken Huttema, 1995-1996.
Martine Mercier, 1997-2001.
Ed De Jong, 2001-2007.
Gyslain Loyer, 2007-2011.
Jack Greydanus, 2011-now.

Better know a Canadian functionary: officers of the Central Experimental Farm

Between its founding in 1886 and its reorganization in 1959, one of the major subdivisions of the federal Department of Agriculture was the Central Experimental Farm, which controlled the lion’s share of government scientific research before the establishment of the National Research Council, and for quite some time afterward as well.

Titles of chiefs of the specialist divisions in the Central Experimental Farm usually stuck to the form of “the Dominion Thing-the-guy-does”. We’ve already covered some of them: the Dominion Cerealist, the Dominion Dairy Commissioner, the Veterinary Director-General.

One of the oldest of these posts was that of the Dominion Botanist, created when John Macoun was appointed to the post as the Department’s plant expert in 1882. Macoun was replaced by James Fletcher, who was also made Dominion Entomologist. By 1952 it was renamed the Chief of Botany and Plant Pathology Division.

The Dominion Botanists were:

John Macoun, 1882-87.
James Fletcher, 1887-1908.
Hans Theo Gussow, 1908-45.
John Hubert Craigie, 1945-52.
W.F. Hanna, 1952-58.

After James Fletcher’s death in 1908, the office of Dominion Entomologist, an expert in insects, was separated from the Dominion Botanist. The Dominion Entomologist was renamed Chief of Entomological Division in 1950.

The Dominion Entomologists were:

James Fletcher, 1887-1908.
Charles Gordon Hewitt, 1909-20.
Arthur Gibson, 1920-24.
Henry Gordon Macgregor Crawford, 1924-50.
Robert Glen, 1950-57.
Beverly Northcott Smallman, 1957-59.

One of the major divisional chiefs had been the Dominion Chemist, the head of all the chemical research laboratories.

The Dominion Chemists were:

Frank Thomas Schutt CBE, 1887-1933.
Clifford H. Robinson, 1933-49.
James C. Woodward, 1949-55.
A.R.G. Emslie, 1955-59.

The office of Dominion Horticulturalist was split from the Dominion Botanist in 1910. Its specialty was in flowers, shrubs and other decorative plants.

The Dominion Horticulturalists were:

William Tyrrell Macoun, 1910-33.
Malcolm Bancroft Davis, 1933-55.
Hinson Hill, 1955-59.

The office of Dominion Agrostologist, also known as Chief of the Forage Division, was split from the Dominion Botanist in 1912. Its job was similar to that of the Dominion Cerealist, except that the Agrostologist focused more on legumes and grasses grown for feeding livestock. The Dominion Agrostologist was changed to the Head of Grass, Legume and Pasture Research Unit in 1957.

The Dominion Agrostologists were:

Malte Oscar Malte, 1912-21.
G.P. McRostie, 1922-30.
Lawrence Eldred Kirk OC, 1931-38.
Trueman M. Stevenson, 1938-57.
J.E. Ross Greenshields, 1957-59.

The Dominion Apiarist (also sometimes referred to as the Dominion Apiculturalist) was split from the Dominion Entomologist in 1914. The Dominion Apiarist studied bees, both for improving honey production and to improve methods of pollination.

The Dominion Apiarists were:

Frederick William Lambert Sladen, 1914-21.
Charles B. Gooderham, 1921-49.
C.A. Jamieson, 1949-58.

Better know a Canadian institution: the Canadian Wheat Board

The Canadian Wheat Board was set up as a Crown Corporation in 1935 as a way to help grain farmers get a better deal when selling wheat during the Great Depression. The way it worked was that farmers would sell their grain to the Wheat Board, which sold it on to other grain merchants; since there were fewer competitors on the market, the Wheat Board could demand a higher price for grains, and that money was passed on to farmers.

Participation in the Wheat Board was originally voluntary, but it was made mandatory for all growers of wheat, barley and oats in 1943 to streamline production in World War II, giving the Wheat Board a monopsony (like a monopoly, except with buying instead of selling). The CWB lost its purview over grains sold for animal feed in the 1970s and 1980s, and its monopsony on oats was cancelled in 1989. It switched from a Crown Corporation to a public-private agency in 1998.

The Wheat Board was further disestablished under the Harper government; it became a marketing board when its last monopsonies over human-grade wheat and barley were repealed in 2012, and is mandated by law to be fully privatized by 2016, when it will become a grain merchant.

The Chairmen (before 1998) and Presidents (after 1998) of the Canadian Wheat Board have been:

John I. McFarland, July-October 1935.
James R. Murray, 1935-37.
George Harold McIvor, 1937-58.
William Craig McNamara, 1958-70.
Garson N. Vogel, 1970-77.
William Esmond Jarvis, 1977-90.
Lorne F. Hehn, 1990-98.
Greg S. Arason, 1998-2002.
Adrian C. Measner, 2002-06.
Greg S. Arason (acting), 2006-08.
Ian White, 2008-now.

Better know a Canadian functionary: the Chairman of the Canadian Grain Commission

In 1912, the government of Sir Robert Borden set up the Board of Grain Commissioners for Canada, headed by a Chief Commissioner, to regulate the standards and quality controls of the grain industry in Canada. The Canada Grain Act of 1971 replaced the BGCC with the Canadian Grain Commission and its Chief Commissioner with a Chairman. The headquarters of the Canadian Grain Commission are in Winnipeg.

The Chief Commissioners of the Board of Grain Commissioners for Canada were:

Robert Magill, 1912-29.
E.B. Ramsay, 1929-41.
Donald Gordon McKenzie, 1942-56.
Roy Wilfred Milner, 1956-61.
George Newton McConnell, 1961-62.
Frank Fletcher Hamilton, 1962-70.

The Chairmen of the Canadian Grain Commission have been:

Harold Delmar Pound, 1971-85.
George Gordon Leith, 1986-89.
Milton E. Wakefield, 1990-97.
Barry Senft, 1997-2002.
Chris Hamblin, 2002-08.
Elwin Hermanson, 2008-now.

Better know a Canadian functionary: the Chairman of the Canadian Dairy Commission

One of the most contentious pillars of Canadian agricultural policy is something called “supply management”. Basically, the federal government has established regulatory bodies controlling certain food products – eggs, dairy, and poultry – which make and enforce policies designed to protect chicken and dairy farmers by artificially controlling prices. These policies include setting production quotas, limiting imports, and setting minimum prices at the industrial and wholesale level.

These regulatory bodies wield a certain amount of political influence, especially in rural Ontario and Quebec. The most powerful of these bodies is the Canadian Dairy Commission, which controls production and prices for milk and dairy products across Canada, and is also heavily involved with research and marketing in the dairy industry.

The CDC was founded as a Crown Corporation reporting to the Minister of Agriculture in October of 1966, replacing the government’s older dairy controls through the Dairy Products Division of the Department of Agriculture. The government’s efforts to improve the dairy industry had originally been under the control of a semi-autonomous Dominion Dairy Commissioner created in 1890, which became the Dairy and Cold Storage Commissioner of the Central Experimental Farm in 1907 before the division was amalgamated with the Dominion Agricultural Bacteriologist to form the Bacteriology & Dairy Research Division of the Department of Agriculture Science Service in 1937.

The chairmen of the Canadian Dairy Commission have been:

Sydney Clifford Barry, 1966-73.
Ellard J. Powers, 1973-76.
Gilles Choquette, 1976-86.
Roch Morin, 1986-94.
Gilles Prégent, 1994-97.
Guy Jacob, 1997-2001.
Michel Pagé, 2001-02.
John Core, 2002-07.
Randy Williamson, 2007-now.

The Dominion Dairy Commissioners and Dairy and Cold Storage Commissioners were:

James Wilson Robertson CMG, 1890-1904.
John Archibald Ruddick, 1904-34.
John Franklin Singleton CBE, 1934-37.