Organic Connections

Organic Connections

Organic Connections

Organic Connections

Organic Connections

Organic Connections

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Organic HeroesCelebrating the Organic Sector on the Prairies

Organic Heroes

Gary Smith & Wilma Groenen

Pioneer Organic Educator & Pioneer Organic Publisher (Wilma not pictured)Gary S. & Wilma G.

Honoured at Organic Connections 2006

Gary and Wilma have been key resource people since the 1980’s, informing and educating both face to face and in their work as publishers and editors. From 1989 to 1995 Gary edited and Wilma published Synergy Magazine, as well as Agro-Alternatives: Alternate Farming Methods to Lower Input Costs. At a time when there were few formal sources of information for new organic producers these were valuable resources. Gary was also one of the first organic inspectors and a long time instructor with SIAST, developing the first actual course on organic production. In 2000 they edited SOD’s first Organic Farming on the Prairies, a production manual that has been used in classrooms as well as on many individual farms across the prairies.

Paul Hanley

Organic Pioneer CommunicatorPaul Hanley

Honoured at Organic Connections 2006

Paul was the founder of Earthcare, a dynamic discussion group interested in organic and biodynamic agriculture. This organization evolved into Earthcare Connections in 1998. Paul also organized a series of ‘alternate’ agriculture conferences in conjunction with the University of Regina’s Extension Division, Sask. Agriculture and other organizations. In 1980 Paul edited Earthcare: Ecological Agriculture in Saskatchewan. This was the first book published that addressed organic agricultural production on the Canadian prairies. It combined scientific research, farm profiles and anecdotal information. From the establishment of an information centre in Wynyard in 1978 to his work with EarthCare, Paul has been one of the key sources of Organic information for this province.

Joan Harrison

Organic ConsumerJoan Harrison

Honoured at Organic Connections 2008

Joan Harrison came into organics as a consumer in the 70's. She worked with others to create organic food co-ops first for Magpie and then Steephill. She was actively involved in the groups that eventually evolved into the Saskatchewan Organic Directorate (SOD), served as a SOD board member and secretary and volunteered her services with the Organic Agriculture Protection Fund, and the Organic Product Information Service, with Synergy magazine and the SOD newsletter. Joan served on the Organic Connections board for each of the conferences in 2004, 2006 and 2008, helping to source organic food, developing a sessions on composting, and highlighting the consumer farmer connection. Joan has given of herself to better the organic community. Her work is valued and her efforts respected.

Stewart Brandt

stewart-brandt-s

Organic Researcher

Honoured at Organic Connections 2008

Stu Brandt initiated the Alternate Cropping System study, a long term rotation study including three organic rotations in 1994, long before studying organic systems was a safe career move.  Organic farmers were consulted on approach and methods for the organic system. Meaningful organic rotations were established, and a variety of organic techniques were incorporated in a flexible management system. Stu applied a truly innovative approach, considering organics not simply as the absence of specific treatments, but as a whole system. The ACS has helped to develop expertise in organic among the research community and provided a focal point for communication between organic farmers and researchers. He has been a valued mentor in the scientific community, and valued resource in the organic community.

 

More Organic Heroes...

  1. Alfred Galarneau