The founding Board of Directors of the Ontario Hay and Forage Co-operative Inc. today announced the incorporation of Ontario’s newest producer co-operative. The Co-operative’s goal is to increase the value of producers’ hay and forages by on-farm drying of hay which will then be compacted by the Co-operative for sale to export markets. More than 50 hay producers turned out to the first public meeting of the Co-operative held on December 1st in Mount Forest.
The Ontario Hay and Forage Co-operative is undertaking a comprehensive feasibility study to determine the economic viability of a major double-compacting hay facility in Southern Ontario. A positive feasibility study would also determine the size, location, and type of facility to be built. The proposed hay compacting facility, currently planned to handle up to 100,000 tonnes annually and estimated to cost between $10 and $15 million, would target growing export markets for high quality hay, including markets in Asia, the Middle East and the European Union.
The launch of the Ontario Hay and Forage Co-operative is important for all hay producers in this Province, By producing a more consistently superior product, Ontario hay producers will be able to get access to higher value export markets.” The Co-operative is the outcome of efforts by the Hay Marketing Forum of the Ontario Forage Council to tap into new markets for Ontario hay.
The Co-operative will be speaking about its plans at the Ontario Forage Council’s Forage Focus conference in Shakespeare on December 15th and in Winchester on December 16th. Details can be found attached:
Founding Directors of the Ontario Hay and Forage Co-operative are Fritz Trauttmansdorff (Chair), Don Rowntree (Vice Chair), Jonathon Blydorp (Secretary-Treasurer), André Larocque, Chris Martin, Chris Riach, and Larry Davis. The Co-operative has retained the services of co-op business consultant George Alkalay of Northfield Ventures Ltd. to prepare the feasibility study and provide support with overall project development.
For more information, please contact:
Fritz Trauttmansdorf, Chair