The Lambton Federation of Agriculture is a non-profit general farm organization in Lambton County who helps and supports farmers and issues relating to their farm operations, while bridging with the community and other sectors/partners/service providers.
In 2021, the Lambton Federation of Agriculture represented 1942 farmers (*1927 in 2020 and 1932 in 2019).
The group was formed in 1941 by farmers who felt the need for a united voice in the farm community.
In 1940, we find that the farmers at that time had just passed through a great depression along with the rest of the country. Canada had become involved in the second world war and experience told us this meant price controls and other war-time restrictions. Some realized the need for a farm organization in Lambton County.
W.P. MacDonald, the agricultural representative, sent out invitations for a meeting in the agricultural office in Petrolia. Forty-one attended. They decided to organize. In order to have a little money for office expenses, each put in a dollar. Mr MacDonald was appointed secretary and O.K. Miliken was appointed treasurer. It was agreed that the county board of directors would consist of two from each township and that when they met, they would elect their president and vice-president.
It was decided that the organization would be known as The Lambton Farmers Association. However, as time went on and it was agreed to join the Ontario Federation of Agriculture, the name of the county organization was changed to Lambton Federation of Agriculture.
After experiencing the Depression and World War II’s rationing, most farmers in Warwick and Lambton recognized the need for a strong united voice to address their common concerns.
The Lambton Farmers Association (later changed to the Lambton Federation of Agriculture or LFA) was a grass-roots organization created in 1941. Two directors from each township were appointed. Kenneth Janes and Swanton Reycraft were the ﬁrst Warwick representatives.
“Buying clubs,” later known as “co-operatives,” were early economic structures that pooled member buying power for seed, coal, fertilizer and ﬂour. At meetings in 1947 through to the early 1950s, the Federation actively supported the introduction of co-operative life, automobile and medical insurance, offering Lambton farm families their ﬁrst affordable hospital and surgical insurance plans.
Rural issues addressed over the years included member funding, embargos on export cattle, farm hydro rates, marketing campaigns, improved rural assessment, operating loan interest rates, land expropriation due to the Hwy 402 expansion, confusion over metric labelling on chemicals, debt review, price stabilization, nutrient management, landﬁlls, competing with European Union and USA price supports and fair prices for crops and livestock. The Lambton Federation of Agriculture remains active in fulﬁlling its mission statement: “to be an advocate for agricultural producers through networking, education and communications with community and governments.”
Presidents of the LFA from Warwick over the years have been: Ken Janes (1945), George McCormick (1949), Wm. Blain (1960–61), Howard Huctwith (1970), Mac Parker (1985–86) and Dennis Bryson (2004–05). In 2008 the Secretary-Treasurer is Brenda Miner.
SOURCE: Brenda Miner, 2007
The organization helps to develop and consolidate farmer opinion for the promotion of any activity within Lambton County and to help improve the welfare of the individual farmer and the farming industry.
They also help to bring the viewpoints and concerns of the membership to the Ontario Federation of Agriculture for policy development and action, and in turn, to interpret Ontario Federation of Agriculture policy has developed to all farmers in Lambton County.
Directors help to facilitate the spread of information of concern to and from the farming industry and to and from all farmers in Lambton County.
LOCAL LEADERSHIP – What’s in it for me?
- GET CONNECTED: Grow your professional and social circle
- BE IN THE KNOW: New programs, grants, campaigns
- GIVE BACK: Contribute to your own farm community