Annual Reports

Annual Reports

The Alberta Beekeepers Commission’s Annual Report provides information on the organization’s governance, strategy, activities and financial performance over the past year.

Resolutions

2020 Resolutions as voted on at the 2020 ABC AGM held on November 25, 2020:

1. Open the US border to Alberta  for package bee imports from Northern California

Whereas the Alberta provincial government worked with the Alberta Beekeeper’s Commission this spring on a request to open the Canada/US border on an emergency basis (which was rejected by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA)),

Whereas the Alberta provincial government has successfully negotiated Alberta-based initiatives with the federal government such as the Quick Covid tests at our international airport, and the importation of Queens from Northern California,

Whereas CHC outright rejected our proposal for a pilot project to test a small  number(200) of US packages and follow them throughout the season testing for pests and diseases,

Whereas  there is 20 years of data and research demonstrating the safety of importing packaged bees from the United States,

Whereas the local supply of Nucleus colonies is not sufficient to wholly replace winter losses (which continue to be high) in Alberta,

Whereas the supply of packages from NZ, Australia and Chile cannot be depended  upon with airline shutdowns,

Whereas bees arriving from New Zealand, Australia and Chile are mal-adapted to Alberta’s climate,

Be it resolved that the Alberta Beekeepers Commission continue to work with the province of Alberta to establish strict protocols (such as those used to import queens from Northern California) to find a solution, such as a  joint initiative with the federal government, to open the Canada/US border  to Alberta  for the importation of packages of bees from Northern California.

CARRIED


2. Lobby the Alberta Agriculture and Forestry AGRI-FOOD LABORATORIES to expand and establish appropriate analytical tools and testing protocols which can accurately identify/verify all sources and types of sugars in honey.

Whereas the need to identity and certify types of sugars and sources of sugars in Alberta honey is becoming increasingly important,

Whereas Alberta honey producers require an unbiased certified laboratory to verify, quantify and qualify sugars in Alberta honey prior to shipping,

Whereas Alberta honey producers require an unbiased certified lab to verify and when required dispute 3rd party test results, and

Whereas Alberta honey producers require material specification sheets (including crop source) for all sugar purchased to be provided by all bulk sugar providers to Alberta,

Be it resolved that Alberta Beekeepers Commission lobby the Alberta provincial government to expand and establish appropriate analytical tools and testing protocols which can accurately identify/verify all sources and types of sugars in honey.

CARRIED


3. Alberta Beekeepers Commission withdraws from Canadian Honey Council.

Whereas Canadian Honey Council (CHC) continues to reject any and all proposals by the Alberta Beekeepers Commission on a range of issues such as;  opening the Canada/US border to US packages, (including our recent proposed small pilot project of 200 packages  with mite and disease testing by the Beaverlodge Research Station and our request  this spring when the airlines shut down packages from NZ, Chile and Australia) and updating CBISQT to meet the new Safe Food for Canadians Regulations

Whereas ABC staff have been resourceful in generating additional funds and securing excellent contacts in government,

Whereas ABC has taken on a leadership role on major initiatives such as queen importation from the US,

Whereas CHC does not truly represent the commercial beekeeping industry in Canada, as most provincial organizations are dominated by hobby beekeepers, whose interests often opposes that of commercial beekeepers,

Be it resolved that the Alberta Beekeepers Commission (ABC) withdraw our delegates from the Canadian Honey Council (CHC) board and no longer hold membership in that organization. ,  The ABC would instead use our resources to promote the positions supported by our membership.  On issues where CHC is in alignment with Alberta Beekeepers Commission, we could provide support via leadership from our knowledgeable staff and/or financial support for that initiative if the board or the membership deems it worthy.  The board could also look to other national organizations that might provide support to pursue goals or initiatives which align with the ABC.  Further the board could explore organizing or joining a national association of commercial beekeepers and bring back recommendations to our next AGM.

DEFEATED


4. Work with  industry stakeholders across the prairie provinces who rely on Temporary Foreign Workers (TFWs) for primary agriculture. The purpose would be to develop and implement an organization similar to WALI and/or F.A.R.M.S  which would support employers for all Streams of Agriculture TFWs.

Whereas multiple prairie agriculture industry sectors do not have coordinated support in dealing with provincial, federal governments, and international government agencies/consulates,

Whereas multiple prairie agriculture industry sectors do not have coordinated communication channels with governments as rules and regulations change

Whereas multiple prairie agriculture industry sectors do not have coordinated representation at the national level,

Whereas multiple prairie agriculture industry sectors do not have coordinated support to ensure safe/appropriate working conditions or housing, and

Whereas multiple prairie agriculture industry sectors do not have coordinated support to source the most cost effective and efficient travel for workers

Be it resolved that the Alberta Beekeepers Commission work with the multiple ag organizations and sectors in Alberta, Manitoba,  Saskatchewan, and the Canadian Federation of Agriculture to research and develop a plan to create an organization similar to WALI and/or F.A.R.M.S for the Prairie provinces.

CARRIED


5. Future office, storage and work space requirements of the Commission.

Whereas the current ABC office lease ends in September 2021

Whereas since the onset of COVID in spring 2020 it has been determined that all functions of the ABC staff can be completed as usual from remote offices at home, and that all Eligible Producers have access to ABC staff both through phone and email

Whereas The cost of the lease, $18,500 annually, could be saved and utilized for more pressing issues

Be it resolved that the ABC explore and consider all possible scenarios for future office and storage space including staff working remotely as well as new office, storage and future needs of the Tech Transfer Team Program.

CARRIED


6. Formalize Resolution Process for ABC Annual General Meetings

Whereas resolutions at AGMs direct the actions of the ABC board and staff,

Whereas  resolutions occasionally do not fit the organizations vision, mission or strategic plan,

Whereas resolutions from the floor can be spur of the moment and not fully thought through and may require resources/time that the commission does not have. and

Whereas  resolutions can be duplicates of previous resolutions and there is no formal process to ‘end’ a resolution

Be it resolved that The Alberta Beekeepers Commission formalize the AGM resolution process to ensure that  resolutions fit the goals and objectives of the commission, are attainable within the commission’s resources, and are not duplicates of ongoing/completed resolutions. The process should include a review period by the board to research and review the resolution before going to the floor and should outline actions/steps needed to resolve a resolution. This process will be developed and presented at the next AGM.

CARRIED


7. Reduce the amount of monthly printed Alberta Bee News magazine publications to 6 editions per year and introduce a digital publication for the other 6 months.

Whereas the Alberta Bee News magazine supports Eligible Producers in meeting employment classified advertising requirements to support the TFW and SAWP program application process, and

Whereas evidence of current classified employment advertising can be provided with applications in a digital format, and

Whereas the cost to print and mail the Alberta Bee News Magazine costs on average $27,300 per year,

Be it resolved that Bee News is issued 6 times per year in print version and 6 times per year as a digital version, alternating monthly.

CARRIED