Seed World

Seed Growers Get Top Honours from CSGA in Halifax

From top left: Peter Boswall, Richard Martin, Jim Baillie, Dale Adolphe, Kathy Hardy, Grahame Hardy.

People who have made a big difference in their industry were honoured at the Canadian Seed Growers’ Association (CSGA) annual meeting in Halifax, N.S., today.

Robertson Association Award

The Robertson Associate Award recognizes those who have fulfilled with utmost fidelity and success their obligation to CSGA. This year’s award recipients are Jim Baillie, Kathy Hardy and Grahame Hardy.

Originally from a family dairy farm near Tatamagouche, N.S., Jim Baillie is a graduate of the former Nova Scotia Agricultural College, now Dalhousie University Agricultural Campus. He initially started out in agri-retail, but in the mid-1990s he decided farming was his calling and he developed a forestry harvesting and silviculture business in partnership with a field crop farm. In 1997 he added pedigreed seed production to the farm.

Baillie recognizes the leadership benefits created by active farm organizations. To this end, he has been involved in each sector he has participated in over the years — from committee to board to executive positions, he allocates the time necessary to assist in the development of his sector. Participation takes time away from family and farm, but he is blessed with the support of his wife Brenda, also his key staff member.

Seed growers and seed grower groups have a special meaning to him. From his initial work on the Maritime Branch Board to his later role as president of CSGA, Baillie has developed a mindset that welcomes change that strengthens not only the position of seed growers, but of the whole seed sector as well.

Grahame and Kathy Hardy met at Kemptville College (KCAT) in 1970 and in 1972 they were married. Both Grahame and Kathy obtained their select seed grower status and became a very integral part of the day-to-day operation of the Hardy Seeds registered seed establishment. The seed cleaning plant was expanded to accommodate the processing of seed from contract growers.

In 1990, Grahame and Kathy added a commercial elevator for spring wheat and an additional 600 tonnes of storage, which was used to store additional seed production from contract growers. In 2002, the seed cleaning plant was upgraded to include an automated bagging line to allow for the increased output of bagged product, which included pedigreed seed, certified organic food grade soybeans and food grade soybeans for the export market.

Seed industry activity for Grahame included 10 years as a director with OSGA and three years on the SeCan board. Kathy served as a provincial director of CSGA for four years and has been a director of the Ottawa Valley Seed Growers Association for a number of years. Grahame and Kathy have both received long service certificates for pedigreed seed production — Grahame for 35 years and Kathy for 25 years.

Honorary Life Award

This award is presented to people who, by distinguished services to CSGA, have contributed to the betterment of Canadian agriculture. This year’s recipients are Richard Martin, Peter Boswall and Dale Adolphe.

Peter Martin was born in Winnipeg but grew up in Ottawa, where he received a science degree from Carleton University in 1973. He then attended the University of Guelph, receiving a BSc in agriculture and a MSc and PhD in plant pathology.

Immediately following graduation, he started work with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada at the Charlottetown Research Centre in P.E.I. as a research scientist on cereal diseases, with emphasis on barley pathogens. He continued to work at the centre for 35 years before retiring in 2015.

Martin was active on many regional and national committees, including the Atlantic Cereal Registration Committee and the Prairie Grain Development Committee. He served as president (2003-2004) of the Canadian Phytopathological Society.

Peter Boswall was raised on the family farm in Marshfield, P.E.I., and commenced his career in agriculture working with the Crops Branch of the P.E.I. Department of Agriculture, and was involved in managing on-farm field crop trials across the province.

Among other duties at the time, he was responsible for the Department’s Pedigreed Seed Assistance Program. Boswall was appointed provincial potato specialist in 1990 and spent the next 10 years working with growers on issues concerning the potato industry.

In 2000, he transferred back to field crops and his name was forwarded to CSGA as the provincial representative to the CSGA board of directors. Between 2000 and 2012, he had the pleasure of participating on the CSGA board and on a number of board committees including Research and Development, Awards and Bylaws. While a member of the CSGA board, he was also actively involved in the Maritime branch of the CSGA.

Dale Adolphe was raised on a grain and livestock farm near Weyburn, Sask., and attended the University of Saskatchewan majoring in agricultural economics and accounting.

During his leadership as president of CSGA, the industry witnessed a comprehensive seed sector review, the National Forum on Seed, a Seed Sector Value Chain Roundtable, two new variety registration systems, revised Plant Breeders’ Rights legislation and, most recently, the introduction of alternative service delivery. Also under Adolphe’s leadership, CSGA received nearly $1.5 million in program support from the Government of Canada under AAFC programs like CARD, ACAAF and Growing Forward.

Adolphe was recognized for his contribution to Canadian agriculture and, in particular, the canola industry by being presented with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in early 2013. In 2015, he was awarded an honorary life membership in the Association of Official Seed Certifying Agencies.