Canada-U.S. Cattle Industry Roundtable
Leaders within the Colorado and Canadian cattle industry discussed the largest trading relationship in the world during the fourth annual Canada-U.S. Cattle Industry Roundtable. The event, hosted by the Colorado Department of Agriculture and the Consulate General of Canada in Denver, Colo., is designed to discuss local and international issues facing today’s cattle industry.
Nearly 60 industry leaders and students gathered on Sunday, January 16, 2011, at the National Western Stock Show complex. The program was led by Consul General of Canada Dale Eisler, Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture John Salazar, and Special Policy Advisor to the Governor on Water John Stulp.
The dialog covered a variety of cattle-related issues including animal well being, regulations, financing and the economy, and attracting youth to the cattle industry.
• Youth in Agriculture: “The agricultural industry is in transition. Today, young people are often leaving the farm or ranch for the urban lifestyle. Meanwhile, we are facing a rapid growth in the world’s population. It is vital we continue to discuss how today’s agricultural producers will continue feeding families around the world with a dwindling ag community,” said Eisler.
• Agriculture Education: “People don’t understand where their food comes from. We, as an agriculture industry, must actively communicate with today’s consumers about their food and the best practices utilized within the industry. It will be a sad day in this country if we ever lose our ability to create food; a growing world population will be dependent on our farmers and ranchers for their nutrition needs,” said Salazar.
• Animal Well Being: “It is widely recognized that livestock producers on both sides of the border have a mutual interest to care for their animals, combining a moral obligation with the latest industry practices and recognizing they are indeed raised for food,” said Stulp.
The U.S. and Canada are each other’s most important trading partners and enjoy the largest bilateral trading relationship in the world. In 2009, two-way merchandise trade surpassed $390 billion. Of that, the US exported approximately $19.1 billion in total agricultural products to Canada.
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Colorado Gov. Jared Polis is expected to sign SB 21-87, known as the Farm Workers Bill of Rights, though much of the content will be decided through the rulemaking process.