Agriculture is the industry that built Alberta. It gave us our start over a hundred years ago and is just as crucial to our economy and way of life today. Agriculture is a major contributor to our GDP, and the Alberta Liberals are committed to helping the industry thrive. This week we’re shining the spotlight on three areas where the Alberta government can do more to help our farmers.
Just like with oil and gas, getting our product to market is critical. We support working with farmers to reduce red tape and eliminate interprovincial trade barriers to help improve market access.
Labour shortages are one of the biggest challenges facing our agriculture industry. We can address shortages in the agriculture labour market by making agriculture a high priority in labour programming and immigration policy, in part through reforms to the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (“AINP.”) We can go one step further by working with local governments and industry to improve rural living and help keep rural communities vibrant.
A sustainable agricultural industry is an environmentally conscious one. To achieve this, the Alberta Government must work with farmers to keep our ecosystems and industry healthy. We can accomplish this by working with farmers to promote soil health and regeneration, boosting organic matter and reducing the use of herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides by encouraging more producers to use “multi-species cover crops” where feasible.
Another critical step is using evidence-based, expert opinion to inform and guide water and irrigation policy. Issues around water quality and supply for agricultural uses are now of such critical importance that public policy decisions in this area can no longer afford to be motivated by politics.
For a more solutions-oriented approach to Alberta politics, please subscribe.