GRAIN FARMERS OF ONTARIO is an organization that was founded to serve the collective needs of our farmer-members. Since our inception, feedback from the grassroots level has been our way of understanding what matters most to you. The Board of Directors and staff have an understanding of the current issues and concerns from government to consumers, and from the farm to the elevator. But we still need to hear from you.
That is why every three years we conduct a farmer-member survey to give you another means of connecting with us. Our 2021 survey was launched in September, and we will be collecting responses until the end of January.
I know that taking the time to do a survey can feel like a chore. But it is important for us to understand how well we are doing. Are we meeting your expectations? Is there something we are missing? This is your opportunity to let us know.
For example, we have strengthened and adapted our communications to farmer-members in response to COVID-19 restricting in-person events such as farm shows and our yearly meetings. We have had very good attendance at virtual meetings that were developed in place of in-person events, and we want to know if a virtual meeting option is something you expect to be available post-pandemic.
The Ontario Grain Farmer magazine that you are reading now continues to be one of our primary means of communication with farmer-members. We know from past surveys that it is your preferred method to learn about the work we are doing on your behalf; it is how you stay informed about activities and events we are hosting. We want to keep it that way. Please let us know what you want to see in the magazine — we do read your responses (but rest assured they are kept anonymous) and we have taken action on many past ideas.
The survey is a formal means of getting your feedback, but you don’t need to wait for it to let us know what you are concerned about. Farmer-members are encouraged to reach out to member relations, myself, or their district director whenever they want to. The upcoming January District Meetings are another opportunity to connect, and we hope you participate in your local meeting.
Your voice is important; and we want to make sure we hear it and turn your ideas into action.
Find the 2021 farmer-member survey at www.gfo.ca/survey. •