Alberta Forage Industry Network

Olds, Alberta

albertaforages@gmail.com

403-556-4248

Last revised May 1, 2016

Position Statements

To read our postion on Round Up Ready Alfalfa, click here!

"However, AFIN’s position on the issue is to oppose the introduction of the genetics into the Western Canadian growing region. We must emphasize that we are not against the technology, however rationalize that GM alfalfa not be allowed in Western Canada for the following reasons:

  1. Forage Export is a significant contributor to the Agricultural economy in Alberta. Many importing jurisdictions have strict regulations not to import ANY GM agricultural products. Until such time as these countries allow GM technology in imported agricultural products we need to keep the genetics out of Western Canada.

  2. It would be a significant detriment to the export of not only hay products, but forage seed exports as well, worth over $1.6 billion since 1998 (Stats Canada, 2008 figure).

  3. Alfalfa often grows outside of planted fields in ditches and fencerows as “feral” populations; there is growing concern that the GM characteristics could be spread from feral individuals to non-GM alfalfa stands.

  4. Alfalfa is a perennial species that is cross pollinated by insects the GM traits could easily be transferred to from GM to non-GM plants."

To read our position on Climate Change, click here

"The The Alberta Forage Industry Network (AFIN) represents the stakeholders that have the ability to address Climate Change in a sustainable manner.

The roles that forages and grasslands can play include:

  1. Decreasing erosion, areas of permanent cover prevent large scale erosion events

  2. Enhancing carbon sequestration of perennial stands, grasslands act as carbon sinks

  3. Reducing reliance on chemical fertilizer products especially using legumes to add nitrogen

  4. Well-managed forage systems improving the diets for ruminants increasing productivity and

    lowering Green House Gas (GHG) generated/pound of protein (i.e. meat & milk)

  5. Use of forage cover crops and integrating livestock in annual crop rotation for soil carbon

    capture improvements"