Alberta Environmental Farm Plan Company announces new corporate support
February 17, 2006:
Alberta Environmental Farm Plan Company (AEFP), the non-profit company that delivers Environmental Farm Plans (EFPs) in the province, has announced that one of Alberta’s oldest farm retailers, UFA Co-operative Limited, has joined the organization as a corporate supporter.
"This is the first major support from the corporate sector for EFPs in the province, and it is important for the program," says Mike Slomp, executive director of AEFP. "Farmers across the province will see reference to EFP workshops in some of UFA’s latest marketing materials.
"It’s also important that producers and others who have an interest in AEFP and the whole EFP process understand this relationship."
The goal of AEFP is to have as many producers in the province as possible complete an EFP as soon as possible, says Slomp. The environmental improvements that result from EFPs are important not only for the success of individual producers but also for their industry. In fact, environmental sustainability and food safety are a key component of Canada’s brand image in the global food business.
It’s only reasonable that the agriculture and food business community also become supporters, says Slomp. This community is an important and effective communicator with producers and others. In the process, they can assist AEFP in creating awareness for the program and getting producers involved.
It’s important that producers and others understand that these AEFP corporate support relationships are not designed to endorse companies or specific commercial products, says Slomp. They are undertaken according to strict standards that ensure the credibility of AEFP, and the EFP process is first priority.
"As a corporate supporter, UFA assists AEFP in a number of ways," says Slomp, "such as helping to distribute communications materials by mail and through its network of 35 retail farm and ranch supply stores as well as promoting and sponsoring EFP workshops. AEFP, in turn, works with UFA staff to ensure they are knowledgeable on the EFP program, they understand the technical resources and training available and EFP program quality is maintained."
"We are very pleased to become a corporate supporter of AEFP," says Chuck Cote, UFA’s Vice-President Farm Supply. "UFA has strong roots and a long history in Alberta’s farming and ranching industry and the rural community, and it is a natural fit to support a program that is designed to help ensure environmental sustainability. We are proud to be one of the first corporate supporters to become involved."
More information on EFPs is available by contacting AEFP toll-free at 1-866-844-AEFP (2337) or by visiting the AEFP Web site, www.albertaEFP.com.
Through the Agricultural Policy Framework (APF), the Government of Canada provides major funding to the EFP program in Alberta, with the Government of Alberta providing additional in-kind support services to help the agricultural sector develop and implement environmental farm plans.
Additional support has been provided by the Agriculture and Food Council, through the Agriculture Environmental Stewardship Initiative; the Alberta Environmentally Sustainable Agriculture Council and various ministries of the Government of Alberta. Contributions have also come from more than 100 local municipalities, businesses and agricultural organizations.