WINNIPEG, MANITOBA, CANADA — The Canadian International Grain Institute’s (CIGI) board of directors announced on June 19 three new directors who will fill two positions previously occupied by Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) representatives and one vacant “director at large” position.

The new directors are LeRon Torrie of Grassy Lake, Alberta; Randy Johner of Midale, Saskatchewan, and Jim Wilson of Darlingford, Manitoba.

Ward Weisensel, a long-time CIGI board director, has been asked to act in an advisory capacity to ensure a smooth transition. Other current board directors are Murdoch Mackay (Canadian Grain Commission), Susie Miller (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada) and Henry Van Ankum, a farmer from Ontario in a “director at large” position.

“This is an important and appropriate step to take with the announcement of the regulation that will define the funding check-off that the federal government has put in place,” says Murdoch Mackay, CIGI board chairman. “It ensures that the market promotion and development activities that CIGI undertakes on behalf of Canadian farmers continue in the new marketing environment.”

He said that the CIGI Board recognizes the CWB’s support over the years as one of CIGI’s founders and appreciates their naming farmers as part of Cigi’s transition to a farmer check-off system.

Earl Geddes, CIGI executive director, said that this new governance approach will ensure that CIGI is receiving clear guidance from farmers who are now directly funding the organization.

“This will enable CIGI to undertake wheat promotion activities that farmers want to see their funds used for,” Geddes said.

The board will next meet at CIGI’s Annual General Meeting on June 25 in Winnipeg.