A Timeline of APAS

Twenty years of Saskatchewan's general farm organization

1935

Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) forms to give Canadian farmers a strong, unified voice

1944

Saskatchewan Federation of Agriculture (SFA) forms; represents SK nationally in the CFA

1984

SFA dissolves following divisive national debate over Crowsnest Pass freight rates

1998

December: Deemed a form of local government and not farmer-controlled, the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) is denied membership in the CFA, leaving Saskatchewan as the only province not represented by a general farm organization at the CFA

Founding APAS members Terry Hildebrandt and Ivan Ottenbreit at the Legislative building in Regina (2000).

1999

March: At the SARM annual convention, delegates overwhelmingly support a resolution to establish a general farm organization in Saskatchewan.

"We don’t have the time or resources to put toward agriculture that it deserves.”

- SARM President Sinclair Harrison, Western Producer 1999

Fall: SARM delegates pass a motion for the Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan (APAS) to become the agricultural voice for SARM

First APAS Board of Directors elected December 2000.

2000

Independent of the 1999 SARM resolution, the “Original Seven” RMs (including Elfros, Grayson, Kelvington, Lakeview, Langenburg, McLeod, and Spy Hill) proceed to establish APAS; interim delegates from 144 (of 297) RMs meet

February: Over 100 Saskatchewan farmers hold a nine-day sit-in at the Legislative building in Regina to demand better supports for agriculture

July 17: APAS is incorporated as a non-profit corporation

December: APAS holds its founding convention, attended by 80 RMs. First APAS Board of Directors is pictured above. Top row (L to R): Steven King, Dale Lemcke, Arlynn Kurtz, Phil Lewis, Ivan Ottenbreit (Vice-President), Garfield Lutz , Jim Brown, Terry Hildebrandt (President), Morris Prescesky. Bottom row (L to R): Wilf Snider, Annette Morin, Evans Thordarson (Vice-President), Mervin Kryzanowski, Cecilia Olver, Dave Brown.

“On as many general issues as we can, we want to keep that connection close to the grassroots people of our organization.”
- APAS founding President Terry Hildebrandt Western Producer, 2000

Original APAS logo (2000).

2001

APAS joins the Canadian Federation of Agriculture

Terry Hildebrandt addresses membership at an early APAS meeting (2000).

2002

Fall: Thanks to pressure from APAS the Fredericton Formula is revised, resulting in $149 million in federal government aid going to Saskatchewan agriculture as part of a $600 million federal transition aid program

2003

May: The first case of BSE is found in a Canadian cow, sparking a crisis that will rock the Canadian cattle industry until 2005.

2004

APAS and other farm groups express concern over an application to approve “Roundup Ready Wheat” for use in Western Canada; results in a withdrawal of the application

2006

April: APAS sells $0.06 loaves of bread at the legislature to highlight the tiny percentage of food sales that primary producers receive

October: APAS, in coalition with other western farm groups, advocates for the right to vote on the future of the Canadian Wheat Board

2010

June: Study shows Canadian farmers pay $200 million per year more in freight rates than was considered “fair and reasonable” under previous legislation; APAS participates in “Rail Cost Review Coalition” and calls for full review of railway costs used in the MRE formula

Spring/Summer: APAS successfully lobbies for disaster assistance for excess moisture, securing payment of $30 per unseeded acre through the Canada-Saskatchewan Excess Moisture Program

2011

December: Bill C-18 ends Canadian Wheat Board monopoly, effective August 1, 2012

2012

January: APAS works with partners to launch Alternative Land Use Services (ALUS) program to provide financial support to producers for conservation projects

July: APAS instrumental in creating the Community Pasture Patron Association of Saskatchewan (CPPAS) to serve as the voice of pasture users following federal decision to end the PFRA Pasture Program

October: Significant cuts are made to AgriStability and AgriInvest

2013/2014

Fall/Winter: Rail service failures result in unprecedented backlog of grain at country elevators and long vessel lineups at ports

December: APAS, Sask Wheat, Sask Barley and Sask Pulse submit “Producer Recommendations on the Future of Canada’s Transportation Act;” show that farmers paid $322 million in excess freight rates in the 2013/14 crop year above what was considered “fair and reasonable” under previous legislation

2015 APAS Youth Leadership and Mentorship Program participants

2015

APAS establishes the APAS Youth Leadership and Mentorship Program to mentor young Saskatchewan producers; 30 young producers have participated since the program’s creation

August: APAS surveys producers and finds support for restriction on farmland ownership; provincial review of farmland ownership legislation results in legislative changes that restrict pension funds and investment trusts from purchasing farmland

2017

July: APAS organizes the Saskatchewan Prairie Carbon Summit to discuss issues related to carbon sequestration, climate change adaptation, and the impact of carbon pricing on the agricultural sector

October: APAS works closely with CFA to oppose Finance Canada’s proposed changes to income taxes that would impact farm succession plans; changes are then withdrawn

2018

February/March: APAS, CFA, KAP and AFA work for amendments to Transportation Act; changes are made and enacted in June 2018, when Bill C-49 (Transportation Modernization Act) receives royal assent

April: Saskatchewan government proceeds with constitutional legal challenge against the federal carbon tax

October: APAS resolution encourages a review of Saskatchewan trespass legislation; resulting amendments require landowner permission prior to entry

November: APAS applies for intervenor status in carbon tax legal challenge

2019

January: APAS, KAP and AFA conduct “Producer Survey on Seed Royalties”; survey finds widespread farmer dissatisfaction with proposals to charge additional royalties on farm-saved seed

Summer/Fall: APAS surveys rural residents on cell and internet service; finds widespread dissatisfaction

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Growing Agriculture: 2020 Saskatchewan Provincial Election Forum

2020

Spring: COVID-19 is declared a pandemic; APAS works with CFA to lobby the federal government for COVID-19 relief for agriculture

September: APAS launches Rural Connectivity Task Force to improve rural cellular and internet service

October: APAS holds Growing Agriculture: 2020 Saskatchewan Provincial Election Forum in advance of the 2020 provincial election

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