Annual General Meeting

Join the Organic Council of Ontario for our 2019 AGM & Policy Forum on April 12th at the Gibson Centre in Alliston, Ontario.

We invite OCO members and the general public to participate in a day of informative presentations, discussions, and a delicious local organic tasting experience!

Organic Policy Forum

After the success of last year’s Policy Forum, we are planning once again to host several break-out sessions with special speakers to discuss critical issues for the organic sector. If you have any suggestions for policy forum topics, please let us know! A draft agenda can be found below.

Enjoy a Local Organic Tasting Experience

Following the Policy Forum, join us for a series of seasonal taste sensations, featuring local beverage and food businesses!

The whole day is open to the public, but we especially encourage you to invite your organic-minded friends and guests to attend the Local Organic Reception.

Membership and Participation

Remember, all certified organic operators are now automatically members! Come out and make your vote count.

If you are not a certified organic operator, but you are a part of the organic value chain, an individual organic supporter, or an association, you can still have a vote at our AGM as a Supporting Member of OCO. Be sure to renew or join before March 15th, and feel free to contact Dora if you want to check your membership status.

The whole event is also open to the public, but voting is reserved for members only.

Tabling and Sponsorship Opportunities

This year’s AGM is expected to attract attendees from across the organic sector in Ontario, including retailers, producers, processors, buyers, and industry stakeholders throughout the value chain. It's the perfect opportunity to showcase your business, sign up new members or customers, or feature your product in our menu.

We are currently seeking sponsors! Download our Sponsorship Package here and please contact Dora if interested.


Call for OCO Board Nominations!

Do you want to see more supports for organic in Ontario? Do you have a regional challenge that you want addressed? Help us shape the future of organic in Ontario!  Become an OCO Board Member. All board nominations are due by March 15th. We encourage all board nominees to attend April 12th for the sector elections. Please see our Call for Nominations or contact Sarah Grant for more information.  

Draft Agenda

This agenda is a draft and subject to change. Please stay tuned for more details in the coming weeks!

8:30 AM - Registration & Coffee

9:00 AM - Policy Forum: Opening Remarks

9:15 AM - Organic Standards 2020: Updates and Hot Button Issues

  • Hugh Martin, Chair of the Committee on Organic Agriculture
  • David Cohlmeyer, Greenhouse Production
  • Rob Wallbridge, Parallel Production

10:30 AM - Breakout Sessions

  • Organic Integrity and Innovations in Traceability: Part I
    • Thorsten Arnold, Lessons from Europe (Bio Mit Gesicht)
    • Cory Van Gronigan, Tracing DNA and Quality Through the Value Chain (BioLinks/Biotrack)
    • Dr. Tzvi Aviv, Predictive Analytics to Control Disease
  • Organic Research Forum: Soil Health, Pollinators, and Organic Seed Research
    • Brent Preston, Using Tarps to Build Soil Carbon (The New Farm)
    • Ruth Knight, Easy Methods for Measuring Your Soil Health
    • Kyra Lightburn, Pollinators and Rotational Grazing
    • Simon Durand, Building an Organic Research Centre (College Alfred)

11:30 AM - Break

11:40 AM - Breakout Sessions:

  • Competing Labels: What do “Grassfed” and Other Emerging Labels Really Mean?
    • Bill Van Nes, St. Brigid's Dairy
    • Dave Lockman, Pro-Cert
    • Ashley DeLarge, True Foods
  • Organic Integrity and Innovations in Traceability: Part II
    • Harro Wehrmann, Lessons from Europe (Traces Program)
    • Ryan Koory, Tracking Data with Mercaris
    • Ryan O'Sullivan, Grain Discovery's New Blockchain Pilot

12:50 PM - Lunch

1:15 PM - Address from Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (invited, not confirmed)

1:20 PM - AGM: Report on Finances, Update on Activities: Board Nominations

2:30 PM - Breakout Sessions:

  • Seeds in Canada: A Right or Privilege
    • Ann Slater, NFU-O
    • Roy Van Wyk, CSI
    • Aabir Dey, USC
  • TBC

3:40 PM - Break

3:50 PM - Breakout Sessions:

  • Agricorp: Tailoring Business Risk Management to Organic
  • TBC

5:00 PM - Closing Remarks

5:15 PM - Local Organic Reception (more details forthcoming!)

Highlights from Past OCO AGMs

2018 AGM & Policy Forum

2017 AGM & Policy Forum