BCAC COMMITTEES

Learn About BCAC's Committees

BC Agriculture Council uses committees to develop and advocate on our member's interests that are critical to agriculture in British Columbia. Our Committees and Working Groups members are appointed based on their expertise and interests. Committees and Working Groups meet a number of times throughout each year and whenever an issue requires.



Agriculture Education & Awareness Advisory Committee

Growing the community’s understanding of agriculture to secure producer’s social licence to operate while reducing the risk of farmers being bullied or harassed is a priority. Addressing these challenges requires coordinated agriculture industry input.

The Agriculture Education and Awareness Advisory Committee will offer input directed to relevant stakeholders. The BCAC Board has directed the Agriculture Education and Awareness Advisory Committee to engage in the following:

The Committee will:

  • Provide feedback to BCAC’s annual workplan as it relates to its work communicating to the public about agriculture
  • Provide feedback to BCAC’s efforts and strategies as it relates to general sector public relations as well as the proactive/reactive responses to activism
  • Advise the organization on highly sensitive issues when they occur if requested
  • Assist with the organization of a bi-annual meeting of food value chain stakeholders
Committee Chair: To be determined
BCAC Board Representative: Jennifer Critcher
Committee Members:
To be announced

Read BCAC's position on agriculture education and awareness.

BC Young Farmers Committee

To support the long-term sustainability of agriculture in this province, it is critical to understand the perspective from the next generation of farmers and ranchers. The BC Young Farmers Committee’s primary purpose is to provide their input to the Council to ensure the organization’s advocacy efforts are inclusive.

The committee will work to provide a forum where young leaders can discuss issues related to agriculture, provide input in BCAC policy-building initiatives, and build connections between BCAC and the next generation of farmers in B.C. With support from BCAC, the committee will play a key role in the coordination of delivering educational opportunities for young farmers in B.C.

The BCAC Board supports the BCYF Committee to engage in the following; in collaboration with BCAC, the BCYF Committee will:

  • Appoint a representative for the BCAC Board and standing committees
  • Attend advocacy related events on behalf of BCAC as required
  • Nominate committee representatives for provincial agricultural bodies
  • Participate in provincial conferences as required
  • Provide input into the development of BCAC policy papers where requested
  • Act as the primary contact point for young farmer issues for BCAC
  • In collaboration with BCAC, coordinate and deliver educational opportunities to producers
  • Participate in media engagements with coordination and support from BCAC
Committee Chair: Rudi Meier, U&D Meier Dairy
BCAC Board Representative: Jennifer Woike
Committee Members
Rebecca Senicar, Winners Holstein Farms
Russell Reitsema, Westview Dairy Farms
Jacintha Kulchar, Cattle Rancher

Learn more here.

Environment and Climate Change Committee

The Environment and Climate Change Committee will facilitate industry input directed to relevant stakeholders. The BCAC Board has directed the Environment and Climate Change Committee to engage in the following:

The Committee will:

  • Seek ways to improve the implementation of, or amend, the Code of Practice for Agricultural Environmental Management
  • Consider legislative and regulatory changes that exempt activities essential to farm operations from carbon pricing mechanisms
  • Provide recommendations to the BCAC Board of Directors on grant or rebate programs that could reduce the impact of carbon pricing on the agriculture sector as well as enabling information and technology transfer related to environmental sustainability
  • Develop an inventory of climate mitigation infrastructure improvements requiring government investment
  • Identify climate mitigation and adaptation needs in B.C.’s agriculture sector
  • Review the effectiveness of existing climate mitigation and adaptation programs relevant to B.C.’s agriculture sector
  • Exchange relevant information and best practices from their respective sectors

Committee Chair: To be determined
BCAC Board Representative: Peter Simonsen

Read BCAC's position on environment and climate change.

Farm Business Committee

The Farm Business Committee will facilitate industry input directed to relevant stakeholders. The BCAC Board has directed the Farm Business Committee to engage in the following:

The Committee will:

  • Develop recommendations for the Next Agricultural Policy Framework (NPF) to better serve the needs of farmers and ranchers in British Columbia.
  • Continually review the design and implementation of BRM programs in British Columbia to identify potential areas for improvement
  • Seek opportunities to engage with the Canadian Federation of Agriculture and other stakeholders to advance shared interests in the NPF and related programs
  • Provide feedback to delivery agents regarding on-farm program design and project implementation, such as the Environment Farm Plan program, and pursue accountability from delivery agents on an ongoing basis
  • Engage with relevant stakeholders to provide feedback on program design and advocate for increased government investment in agriculture supports
  • Exchange relevant information and best practices from their respective sectors

Committee Chair: To be determined
BCAC Board Representative: Stan Vander Waal

Read BCAC's position on farm business.

Governance Committee
Information coming soon!
Land Use Committee

The Land Use Committee will facilitate industry input directed to relevant stakeholders. The BCAC Board has directed the Land Use Committee to engage in the following:

The Committee will:

  • Seek ways to improve the implementation of, or amend, the Agricultural Land Commission Act and related Regulations, as well as providing recommendations to the BCAC Board of Directors for specific issues that need to be raised with the ALC and/or relevant Ministers
  • Consider legislative and regulatory changes to farm classification and taxation that ensure agricultural land is primarily used for agricultural production
  • Develop recommendations for programs or initiatives that address land improvement costs
  • Provide feedback on any government policies that could affect the integrity of the ALR
  • Review provincial, regional, and municipal land use regulations as needed to identify opportunities to enhance protections for farmland
  • Exchange relevant information and best practices from their respective sectors

Committee Chair: To be determined
BCAC Board Representative: Ray VanMarrewyk

Read BCAC's position on land use.

Labour Committee

The BCAC/WALI Labour Committee will facilitate and coordinate industry input on farm labour issues to BCAC/WALI Staff. The BCAC Board has directed the Committee to engage in the following:

The Committee will:

  • Provide input to government on new regulations being developed
  • Provide input on the support services that WALI provides to employers accessing temporary foreign workers
  • Monitor impacts of government labour regulations on BC farms and ranches
  • Communicate with their respective commodity associations to ensure that groups are kept current on labour related issues
  • Provide recommendations to the BCAC/WALI board for specific issues that need to be raised with government
  • Provide representation to national labour committees or working groups (e.g. CFA, FVGC, CAHRC), and to the Regional and National meetings of the Temporary Foreign Worker Programs

Committee Chair: David Mutz
BCAC Board Representative: David Mutz
Committee Members:
Jeet Dukhia, BC Fruit Growers' Association
Troy Osborne, British Columbia Grapegrowers' Association
Ken Denbok, United Flower Growers
Sukhpaul Bal, BC Cherry Association
Ravi Cheema, BC Greenhouse Growers' Association
Chris Vanrietchoten, BC Poultry Association
Randy Sihota, BC Potato & Vegetable Growers
John Kerkhoven, BC Dairy
Heather Higo, BC Honey Producers

Read BCAC's position on access to labour.

Water Security & Management Committee

The Water Committee will facilitate industry input directed to relevant stakeholders. The BCAC Board has directed the Water Committee to engage in the following:

  • Seek ways to improve implementation of, or amend, the Water Sustainability Act and Regulations (groundwater licensing, priority water use for livestock and food production equipment, dugout licensing, etc.) and provide recommendations to the BCAC Board for specific issues that need to be raised with the respective Ministers
  • Provide input into development of livestock watering regulations
  • Pursue development of agricultural water reserves as per details on water reservation in the Water Sustainability Act
  • Promote group Environmental Farm Plans in water supply priority areas
  • Review existing Water Use Plans and determine if they result in detrimental impacts to agriculture
  • Ensure that agriculture needs are considered, and the industry is involved as a stakeholder in the development of new Water Use Plans
  • Pursue government funding for multi-year, regional water projects including enhanced water storage to support agricultural water priorities
  • Encourage linking access to water with access to crown land, possibly proportional to forage production capacity (AUM’s)
  • Resolve issues around groundwater licensing and surface water rights
  • Promote updating streamflow assessments for decision support
Committee Chair: To be determined
BCAC Board Representative: Lynda Atkinson

Read BCAC's position on water security and management.

OTHER COMMITTEES



Provincial Risk Management Advisory Committee

The Provincial Risk Management Advisory Committee is a joint committee between BCAC and the BC Ministry of Agriculture that advises and provides direction to the BC Ministry of Agriculture (AGRI) on the safety net program policy. The BCAC recommends the representation to the National Advisory Committees (Safety Nets and the Canadian Agricultural Income Stabilization Program) from the Provincial Risk Management Advisory Committee, the appointments of which require approval by the federal Minister of Agriculture.