Marketing board vote set for Ontario goat milk producers

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Marketing board vote set for Ontario goat milk producers

GUELPH, ON, April 14 - Goat milk producers will be able to vote between May 13 and May 21, 2004 on a proposal to establish a goat milk marketing board in Ontario, Minister of Agriculture and Food Steve Peters announced today. "The government is committed to providing industry and the people of Ontario with an opportunity to be part of their own solutions," said Peters. "Ontario's goat milk producers will be able to shape the future of their industry through this vote." Since 2002, goat milk producers have been discussing the type of organization that would best suit the industry's needs. The proposal submitted to the Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission (OFPMC) reflects the input received from producers. The commission is conducting an "expression of opinion" vote by mail-in ballot. Goat milk producers will be asked the following question: "Are you in favour of the creation of a marketing board for goat milk with the powers to: - set the price and determine terms and conditions for sale for different classes of goat milk; - have authority over agreements between producers and persons engaged in marketing or processing goat milk; - collect information from producers, marketers and processors; - and collect a mandatory license fee of 2 cents/litre from the sale of all goat milk to fund the board's activities?" Only goat milk producers authorized by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food (OMAF) to market goat milk are eligible to vote. Ballots will be mailed by the OFPMC on May 10, 2004 to all goat milk producers identified by the Food Inspection Branch of OMAF. Eligible goat milk producers, who do not receive a ballot in the mail by May 14 should contact the commission at (519) 826-3395. All returned ballots must be postmarked no later than May 21, 2004. Disponible en fran├žais www.OMAF.gov.on.caFor further information: Rod Stork, Ontario Farm Products, Marketing Commission, (519) 826-3406; Deirdre Armstrong, Ontario Goat Milk Steering Committee, (519) 323-2083