Seed World

To Prepare for the Future, Doug Miller Says Your Organization Should do This One Thing

The Canadian Seed Growers’ Association (CSGA) recently concluded its annual meeting, which marked the first in-person gathering in four years, since before the pandemic. Executive Director Doug Miller sat down to reflect on his journey and the lessons learned, and he shared valuable advice for his younger self.

Miller stressed the importance of celebrating victories along the way. Despite the association’s tremendous success in the past few years years, achieving numerous milestones, he acknowledged that it’s easy for organizations to keep moving forward without taking time to appreciate their accomplishments fully. Celebrating wins allows for reflection and learning, essential aspects of improving for the future.

The annual meeting showcased CSGA’s commitment to a global approach in terms of its agenda. Representatives from OECD and AOSCA were present, and discussions revolved around key industry trends and opportunities for seed growers. Miller emphasized the significance of having face-to-face interactions and stimulating conversations among members. International harmonization remained a central theme, ensuring that standards are aligned and competitive worldwide.

The meeting also highlighted the association’s ongoing initiatives, including CSGA Learn and the digital seed tag pilot project. CSGA Learn offers professional development and educational opportunities for members, with a focus on next-generation seed growers, plant breeders, and industry officials. This platform aims to equip them with the knowledge and expertise required for the evolving seed system.

Regarding the digital seed tags, Miller explained that digitization is a core part of the association’s new business plan. The tags will provide farmers with more information by unlocking data that was previously isolated. This will aid in validating legitimate seed sources and facilitate the exchange of crucial information, promoting transparency and efficiency in the seed sector.

Another significant topic discussed was the Seed Regulatory Modernization (SRM) process, which the CSGA aspires to play a greater role in. The association is working towards its 2.0 vision, seeking to enhance Canada’s seed certification system. Miller’s vision for the coming year involves engaging key stakeholders and showcasing CSGA as the modern regulatory partner the industry needs. By bridging the gap between the current regulatory environment and industry needs, CSGA aims to position itself as a vital player in the sector’s future success, he added.