Written by Tara Garcia with files from Scott Boulton
A pair of Alberta boards are considering joining up to help reduce costs, which may end up helping farmers.
The two commissions want to hear from farmers in a pair of town halls later this month.
Alberta Wheat & Barley Commissions General Manager Tom Steve explains why they're looking to join up.
"If you farm at Midale Saskatchewan or Unger or Nipawin up in the north or Tisdale for example, do you really need multiple organizations representing your interests? And that's what we've tackled here in Alberta is looking at least combining two cereal crops."
Steve says that back in 2013 the Alberta Wheat & Barley Commissions started sharing resources such as accounting and administration and as time went on it made sense for the two commissions to move to a single management model which happened in 2017. The first year alone, they saved $340,000 in administration costs. And they are now looking at formally amalgamating the two commissions into one entity.
Steve explains some of the benefits.
"They will not be required to prepare for example for separate committee meetings, separate board meetings, and duplicating the costs of our regular board meetings our annual general meetings. Those would be savings."
In addition, Steve says that the research functions are combined under one department but there are different research priorities for wheat versus barley.