Greenhouse floriculture growers of cut flowers, potted plants, annual bedding plants and propagative plant materials will be able to vote between January 10 and 23, 2008 on a proposal by Flowers Canada (Ontario) to have a mandatory check-off to fund their organization.
The Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission will conduct the vote by mail-in ballot.
Flowers Canada (Ontario) has asked to be designated as the representative association for all greenhouse floriculture growers in Ontario under Section 12 of the Farm Products Marketing Act, and for authority to collect a mandatory check-off based on the square footage of greenhouse floriculture production.
The question greenhouse floriculture growers will be asked is:
"Are you in favour of Flowers Canada (Ontario) being designated as the representative association for all greenhouse floriculture growers in Ontario of cut flowers, potted plants, annual bedding plants and propagative plant materials, and paying an annual licence fee of 2 cents per sq. ft. of greenhouse area to a maximum annual fee payable of $13,000 (650,000 sq. ft.) to finance the association's activities to stimulate, increase and improve the producing or marketing of greenhouse floriculture products in Ontario?"
Only greenhouse floriculture growers growing 20,000 sq. ft. or more of cut flowers, potted plants, annual bedding plants and/or propagative plant materials as of December 31, 2007 will be eligible to vote. Nursery stock, perennials and biennials grown for planting into soil outdoors, as well as herbs, are not considered floriculture products for the purpose of this vote.
Ballots will be mailed by the Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission on January 7 to all known greenhouse floriculture growers of 20,000 sq. ft. or more. Eligible growers who do not receive a ballot in the mail by January 10, should contact the Commission at (519) 826-3395.
All returned ballots must be post-marked no later than January 23, 2008.
"We encourage all eligible greenhouse floriculture growers to make their opinions known by participating in this Expression of Opinion Vote," said Dave Hope, Chair of the Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission