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Annual Report of the Ministry of Agriculture for the year 1978 British Columbia. Legislative Assembly [1982]

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 To Colonel the Honourable
Lieutenant-Governor of the Province
of British Columbia
I have the honour to submit for your
consideration the Annual Report of the
Ministry of Agriculture for the year 1978.
fyjl V AJLX^.
Cyril M.Shelford
Minister of Agriculture
of Contents
Report of the Deputy Minister
of Agriculture 5
Organization Chart 6
Ministry Executive and
Branch Heads 1978 7
Agriculture Review 9
Executive Officer 12
Assistant Deputy Minister 13
Information Services 14
Marketing Services 17
Specialist Services 19
Dairy 20
DATE. 23
Engineering 23
Entomology-Plant Pathology        25
Soils 27
Veterinary 29
Youth Development 31
Production Services 33
Apiculture 34
Development and Extension 35
Farm Economics 38
Field Crops 41
Horticulture 43
Livestock 47
Poultry 49
Financial Services 53
Agricultural and Rural
Development 54
Agricultural Credit 56
Crop Insurance 57
Farm Income Assurance 60
Farm Products Finance 61
Property Management 62
  S.B. Peterson
Report of the
Deputy Minister
of Agriculture
To the Honourable Cyril Shelford
Minister of Agriculture
I am pleased to present the 1978 Annual
Report of the British Columbia Ministry of
Agriculture. The report summarizes
activities of your Ministry for the 12
months ending December 31,1978.
During the year, your staff and
executive actively pursued new markets
and carried out programs which, to some
extent, reflected on the previous year's
groundwork such as the signing of the
$86 million ARDSA agreement. Much of
the planning previously carried out has
been transposed to concrete projects which
will have very noticeable impact in the
foreseeable future. The year could be
marked as one of implementation.
Many new programs were introduced to
advance the awareness of B.C. agriculture
among the urban public, convey the latest
research to farmers and ensure a more
stable food market for the consumer and
producer alike.
In general, British Columbia farmers
benefited from a reasonably stable food
and agriculture industry. The Ministry of
Agriculture played a significant role to that
end and will continue to do so during the
corning year.
Respectfully submitted,
S.B. Peterson
Deputy Minister
page five
 page six
 Ministry Executive
Branch, Heads
rtruster-    Hon. Cyril M. Shelford
(appointed Dec. 4/78 to succeed Hon. James J. Hewitt)
Deputy Minister  S.B. Peterson
Assistant Deputy Minister    E.M. King
Director, Administrative Services    J.F. Newman
Director, Financial Services   1.0. Carne
Director, Policy Development and Planning C.J.1T. Gibbs
Director, Production Services  R.L. Wilkinson
Director, Specialist Services   R.J. Miller
Agricultural and Rural Development    J.R. Steele
Agriculture Credit  M.K. Thompson
Apiculture    J. Corner
Orop Insurance   P. Humphry-Baker
Dairy   D.J. Blair
Development and Extension    M.G. Oswell
Engineering  TA Windt
Entomology-Plant Pathology  H.J. O'Reilly
Executive Officer  P.H. Pettyfer
Farm Economics  B A Hackett
Farm Finance Programs  J.E. Hall (Coordinator)
Farm Income Assurance  W.F. Morton
Farm Products Finance    JB. Phillips
Field Crops  J.V. Zacharias
Horticulture    AC. Carter
Information Services    RA. Sera
Livestock  JA. Pelter
Marketing Services   DA Rugg
Doultry    C.W. Wood (retired Oct. 31/78)
property Management    B.R. Richardson
Soils    A. Schori (resigned Sept. 1/78)
Veterinary  Dr. A. Kidd (retired Mar. 18/78)
fouth Development    D.E. Freed
page seven
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Distribution of Farm Cash Receipts -1978
Other     Oilseeds
Special crops,
floriculture and
nursery crops
lattle & calves
Table I
per cent
Grains and oilseeds
Special crops, mcluding floriculture and nursery crops
Cattle and calves
Dairy products
Poultry and eggs
FA (Farm Income Assurance)
Other Cash Receipts
*Source: Statistics Canada
page eight
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
1978 Agricultural
Farm Cash Receipts
Financially, many British Columbia
farmers experienced a good year in 1978.
Farm cash receipts from crop and
livestock sales totalled $525.5 million, an
increase of 16 per cent over 1977. Other
cash receipts, mcluding supplementary,
deficiency and stabilization payments,
totalled $32.4 million, down by 33.5 per
cent from the 1977 level. This resulted in a
net increase of 11.2 per cent in 1978 total
cash receipts from the previous crop year.
Increased total cash receipts were due to
higher returns from crops and livestock.
Receipts from rapeseed increased
dramatically while returns from grain
crops decreased slightly. Vegetable returns
declined but fruit and special crop returns
rose modestly. All items under livestock
and livestock products showed increased
I returns, most significantly hogs, cattle and
calves, and sheep and lambs. For specific
data, refer to Table II.
I    As shown on the preceeding graph, dairy
products, horticulture crops, poultry and
eggs, and cattle and calves were the
largest sectors in terms of farm cash
receipts during 1978.
cent for feed and 3.6 per cent for other
crop expenses.
For further details, see Table IV.
Farm Net Income
Total farm net Income rose by 12.9 per
cent to $205 million in 1978.
Total cash receipts and income in kind
(value of products consumed on the farm)
increased by 11.2 per cent and 8.4 per
cent respectively. At the same time, farm
operating expenses and depreciation
charges increased by 8.7 per cent.
Athough realized net income went up by
15.5 per cent, it was offset by a decline in
the value of farm inventory.
For further details, see Table V.
Food Processing
The estimated value of agricultural
commodities marketed by British Columbia
food and beverage manufacturing firms in
1978 came to $1,712 million. This was an
increase of 12 per cent over the $ 1,527
million value for 1977.
As at July 1978 there were 461 firms
processing foods and beverages in British
Columbia. See Table III.
Farm Operating Expenses
Total farm operating expenses and
depreciation charges in British Columbia
increased by 8.7 per cent to $486' million
in 1978. Significant increases of 15 per
cent occurred for building depreciation
and 14.1 per cent for machinery expenses.
As well, interest on financial indebtedness
rose by 17.3 per cent. However, the B.C.
partial interest reimbursement program
tpaid B.C. farmers $4,385,301 during 1978
to alleviate interest charges on farm loans.
There were minor increases of two per
Retail Food Prices
B.C. retail food prices increased by 11.7
per cent in 1978. Significant price
increases occurred for beef, pork and fruit.
Athough food prices increased, a survey
of eight major Canadian cities showed that
Vancouver residents had an overall higher
gross disposable income after food costs.2
Calculations from Statistics Canada data
show that In 1977, on the average,
Canadians spent only 15 per cent of their
personal disposable income on food, less
than almost any country in the world.
I1 Estimate from Canadian Agricultural
Outlook Conference 1978.
Statistics Canada
page nine
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Table II  Farm Cash Receipts, 1977-1978, British Columbia
— thousands of doEars —
% Change
xU 1   1
4 570
4 230
-      7.4
2 778
-    34.7
15 003
-    24.0
Western Grain Stabilization Payments
3 638
7 300
+ 100.7
12 500
+     0.7
52 150
66 468
4-   27.5
26 986
26 162
-      3.1
Floriculture & Nursery
28 000
-1-   12.5
Other Crops
20 894
-      1.5
Total Crops
166 760
183 365
4-   10.0
Cattle & Calves
59 583
83 464
4-   40.1
12 983
19 368
4-   49.2
Sheep & Lambs
4-   10.7
Dairy Products
117 890
127 465
4-     8.1
46 965
54 989
4-   17.1
38 544
39 898
4-     3.5
Other Livestock & Products
9 572
16 104
4-   68.2
Total Livestock & Products
286 328
342 164
4-   19.5
Forest Products
4 051
5 899
4-   45.6
Farm Income Assurance Program
32 664
-    46.4
Dairy Supplementary Payments
6 825
-    18.9
Deficiency Payments
3 624
2 176
-   39.9
Total Cash Receipts
501 838
557 948
4-   11.2
Source: Statistics Canada
January 1979.
Table III  Number of Food and Beverage Industries
British Columbia -1978
Slaughtering & Meat Processing
Biscuit & Confectionary
Poultry Processors
Fish Products Industry
Fruit & Vegetable Canners,
Sugar & Honey Processors
Preservers, Frozen Fruit &
Miscellaneous Food
Vegetable Processors
Dairy Products Industry
Soft Drink Manufacturers
Flour & Breakfast Cereal
Feed Industry
page ten
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
British Columbia Farm Operating Expenses
— thousands of dollars —
% Change
18 476
20 000
4-   8.2
Gross Farm Rent
9 228
9 500
+   3.8
Wages to Farm Labour
66 606
70 800
4-   6.3
Interest on Indeptedness
54 806
64 300
4- 17.3
Total Machinery Expenses
42 422
48 400
+ 14.1
Fertilizer & Lime
14 657
16 100
4-   9.8
Other Crop Expenses
16 564
17 200
4-   3.8
93 500
4-   1.9
Other Livestock Expenses
5 142
5 500
4-   7.0
Repairs to Buildings
10 256
+   9.2
Electricity elf Telephone
10 800
4- 11.2
25 957
26 700
4-   2.9
Total Operating Expenses
365 554
394 000
4-   7.8
Depreciation on Buildings
44 870
+ 15.0
Depreciation on Machinery
36 639
40 200
+   9.7
Total Operating Expenses &
Depreciation Charges
447 063
486 000
4-   8.7
Source: Statistics Canada
January 1979
British Columbia Farm Income Summary
— th<
iusandsof dolla
xs —
% Change
Total Cash Receipts
501 838
557 948
4-   11.2
122 648
133 000
4-     8.4
Realized Gross Income
624 486
690 948
+   10.6
Less: Operating and Depreciation Charges
447 063
486 000
+     8.7
Realized Net Income
177 423
204 948
+   15.5
Value of Inventory Change
4 125
Total Net Income
181 548
204 924
4-   12.9
January 1979
page eleven
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Executive Officer
The Executive Officer Is responsible for the
consolidation of legislative matters within the
In 1978, 70 Orders-in-Council were
processed relating to 17 Acts. During the 1978
session of the Legislative Assembly, the
following agricultural legislation was
Bill 24 - Natural Products Marketing
(British Columbia) Amendment Act. This
amendment was necessitated by a judgement
of the Supreme Court of Canada that declared
Invalid section 2(2) of the Federal
Agricultural Products Marketing Act. The
amendment also permits a federal agency to
trade within the province and validates the
collection of levies already made.
Bill 40 - Miscellaneous Statutes
Amendment Act, 1978. This Act made minor
amendments to a number of others including
three Acts under the jurisdiction of the
Ministry of Agriculture. They are:
Agrologists Act.
The amendment provides authority for the
membership fee to be set by by-laws.
Farmers' and Women's
Institutes Act.
The amendment provides flexibility to the
constitution of the Provincial Board of
Directors, and recognizes that the provincial
convention is no longer held every two years.
Farm Products Industry-
Improvement Act.
This amendment allows for payment of
certain professional services needed to
examine proposals or review operations of an
agricultural enterprise. It also alters the
conditions required for certain types of loans.
The Executive Officer served as secretary to
the British Columbia Agricultural Ad to
Developing Countries Advisory Committee.
During the fiscal year 1977/78, the committee
recommended support for 46 projects in 28
countries sponsored by 25 charitable
organizations. A similar number of projects
will have been supported by the end of the
1978/79 fiscal year.
The Executive Officer was responsible for
the administration of the imnistry's policy of
financial assistance to many agricultural
associations. Under this policy, grants were
given for prize money, judges' expenses and
capital Improvements to fair and exhibition
grounds. Financial assistance was also given
towards the operating expenses of the
Provincial Women's Institutes, District
Farmers' Institutes, and other associations.
As Superintendent of Farmers' Institutes, the
Executive Officer provided liaison services
between institute members and the ministry
and organized the annual meeting of the
Farmers' Institute Advisory Board.
Additional duties of the Executive Officer
included that of secretary at monthly senior
staff meetings and secretary to the B.C.
Agricultural Services Coordinating
Committee. Through the direction of six lead
committees, BCASCC maintains a watch on
agricultural developments in the province
and encourages research to overcome
problems of importance to the agricultural
page twelve
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Photographic display eases were lnstalle
on main-route ferry runs between the
Mainland and Vancouver Island.
The Information Branch acts primarily as
the communications arm of the ministry.
During 1978, it was actively involved in the
preparation of technical publications,
advertisements, news releases, audio-visual
productions, displays and public relations
Branch staff increased activities in public
relations during 1978. Although projects
such as technical publications, feature
articles, factsheets and other information
pieces designed for farmers were given less
direct attention, they continued to play a
significant part in overall branch
Press Releases
During 1978, a total of 85 press releases
were prepared and Issued to a mailing list of
about 1,500 recipients. These included media,
government offices, industry and private
individuals across Canada. Out of the total, 17
were joint federal-provincial releases
describing projects approved under the
ARDSA program.
News releases described new rninistry
policies, progress on existing programs, new
appointments, and other agricultural issues
affecting the general pubLc.
Technical publications continued to form a
major effort mthin the branch during 1978.
A total of 80 publications were revised,
reprinted or submitted as new manuscripts
for production. Publications covered all
aspects of agriculture in B.C. focussing
primarily on specific cultural or
management practices. The annual crop
production guides were the largest individual
project Mthln the publications division.
A colourful publication was produced
jointly by the Ministry of Tourism and Small
Business Development and the Ministry of
Agriculture, entitled "This Is British Columbia
- Recipes Through the Years". This
publication was designed as a coffee table
book sold by retailers and included colour
page fourteen
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
photos of B.C. scenery related to agriculture as
well as unique ethnic food recipes developed
by the ministry's Marketing Branch home
A glossy illustrated publication entitled
"Progress Report '78" was produced and
mailed to the B.C. Federation of Agriculture
membership list. The publication highlighted
major accomplishments and activities of the
ministry up to mid-1978.
The branch also produced the ministry's
annual report.
Throughout the year the Information
Branch placed technical advertisements in
agricultural publications, newspapers and
specialty catalogues. The advertisements are
designed primarily for the farming audience
to create awareness of specific ministry
services, seminars, programs or events.
Advertisements dealt with 22 mdividual
topics ranging from cultural practices to
mforming farmers of the ministry's financial
program deadlines.
Many branches within the ministry
produce topical factsheets which are
distributed to farmers from the ministry field
offices. The Information Branch coordinated
the factsheet series although each branch
was responsible for the technical material.
The factsheets included Agrimarket
Reporter, Engineering Notes, Farm Business
Management, Field Crop Facts, B.C. Food
Markets, Pest Control Notes, Stock Talk and
Poultry Facts.
Public Relations
One branch staff member was transferred
to Victoria from the Kelowna Film unit to
coordinate the branch's public relations
The Information Branch purchased a
portable display structure designed to
accommodate almost any display need.
Pull-colour photographs, posters and
pamphlets were used on the display as
appropriate to the function. It was used at ten
Individual locations throughout the province
ranging from two to five days per location.
Nine photographic display cases were also
built and installed on main-route ferries
travelling between Vancouver Island and the
Mainland. Each display dealt with one aspect
of B.C. agriculture in an effort to acquaint the
traveLing public with the industry. The
ministry's agriculture display at the P.N.E.
was dismantled after many years in the B.C.
As part of the public relations activity,
feature articles describing ministry
accomplishments and programs were
submitted to Country Life in B.C. beginmng
with the November 1978 issue. This is
planned as a regular submission in the
foreseeable future.
In March 1978, the film unit at Kelowna
moved into a new extension wing of the
Kelowna office buEding. The wing included a
fully operational film and sound studio,
darkroom and post-production film facilities.
Ministry staff and the general public made
frequent use of the films and services of the
unit. Slide-tape presentations for ministry
staff became increasingly popular.
A series of 21,15-minute television
programs were produced in conjunction with
the Dawson Creek staff. The programs were
aired during November 1978 to May 1979.
The 1978 fruit growers television workshop
was broadcast in one-hour units over five
days during February. Feature-length
one-hour programs were prepared on forage
handling systems and farm credit. Other
films produced include Family Farm
Vacations, Orchard Safety, Valley Vintage.
(B.C. wine industry) and other miscellaneous
productions. The branch's film library was in
demand lending 345 films during
the year.
Miscellaneous Activities
The branch coordinated a
communications workshop designed to help
ministry staff become more knowledgeable in
the use of visual aids. Workshops were held in
Richmond (October), Prince George
(December) and Kelowna (December) for
about 20 staff in each location. They were well
received and future workshops were
encouraged by staff.
page fifteen
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
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-. ::-. ■■-i<,;;j:!-:'-- ■-  -:■;.-  . ;.!  "   •* ■:•;.;....::.;,   ..-.-^Ic.-:.:    v;.^',., -,i,..:...   .:....:;:.:.     --,: ^ V
Major food promotion campaigns, such as the Brown Bag promotion, stressed the use of home grown B.C. quality foods for good nutrition.
page sixteen
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
The Marketing Services Branch Is
responsible for mamtaining and
cultivating new markets for British
Columbia agricultural products as weE as
promoting the use of B.C. home grown
foods within and outside of the province.
The branch is made up of three mdividual
aspects; adniinlstration, food promotion
and market information.
In addition to legislation and other
special projects, the administration office
coordinated the food promotion and
market information roles.
During 1978, the branch maintained its
food promotion function while placing
additional emphasis on the fledgling
market information program which was
started in 1977. Legislation entitled
"Agriculture Products Grading Act" was
completed during 1977 and enacted in
early 1978. The act stimulated a
re-evaluation of grading and inspection in
B.C. in light of a breakdown in the
marketing system for fresh fruits and
vegetables. This re-evaluation will continue
during 1979.
The branch participated with the federal
government in developing task force
reports evaluating the market potential of
a number of B.C. agricultural commodities.
The reports will be analyzed during 1979.
With the help of auxiliary staff, the
branch began a periodical newsletter
entitled B.C. Food Markets Report; initiated
services to the food processing industry;
hired some home economists; and carried
out a study evaluating farmers' markets
programs throughout North America and
the ImpEcations for B.C.; continued
preparation of commodity sEde
presentations which are aimed at the
school audience.
The branch was involved in special
projects such as recapping the program
operated by Pacific Dehy Limited,
development of a picture recipe book
entitled "This is British Columbia - Recipes
Through the Years" in conjunction with
Beautiful B.C. magazine (Ministry of
Tourism and Small Business
Development); participation in the
international Green Crops Drying
Congress held in Saskatchewan; and
participation in the Food Science Lead
Committee and the Part I Technical
Sub-Committee under ARDSA
The branch monitored missions to
Canada from China, the results of which
will hopefully show in future years. The
branch also worked with a Japanese
delegation in British Columbia to purchase
B.C. purebred dairy cattle.
The branch maintained the ministry's
statistics function untU it was turned over
to the Policy Development and Planning
service upon the appointment of a
statistician. The branch was also involved
in preparing the horticulture section of the
Western Canadian Position Paper on
Agriculture in the GATT negotiations. At
year end, the outcome of these
negotiations was not known.
Food Promotion
During 1978, the Food Promotion Unit
actively engaged in personal contact with
the industry and special promotion
campaigns using the media and displays.
The unit maintained retail store support
through point-of-sale material and visits to
every store in the province on two
occasions. The unit entered displays at
conventions and fairs including the Fresh
for Flavour Foundation, the B.C. Federation
of Agriculture convention and numerous
shopping maEs.
The branch coordinated a Spring Salad
Tour for producers, handlers and the
media in an effort to create an overall
awareness of certain aspects of B.C.
The format of the recipe releases was
changed during 1978 to a 32-page recipe
and gardening pubEcation issued each
season. Two major mail poster campaigns
were carried out throughout the province
featuring the themes "Salad Time" and
"Pack Up Some Goodness in Your Old
Brown Bag". The Brown Bag promotion
highlighted the use of nutritious B.C.
foodstuffs in packed lunches. The
program, aimed at aE age groups, featured
a poster contest for school chEdren and
famEy farm vacations as prizes.
page seventeen
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
The Food Promotion Unit cooperated
with numerous B.C. agricultural agencies
to promote specific commodities. These
included the United Flowers Co-op, Country
Fair at the P.N.E., a mushroom marketing
campaign and the Fresh for Flavour
Market Information
1978 was the second year of this
program's operation. The pubEcation
"Agrimarket Reporter" was published 23
times during 1978 to provide B.C.
agribusiness with detaEs on current
markets in B.C. and the U.S., commodity
suppEes, labour situations, transportation,
tariffs, etc.
A second newsletter, "B.C. Food
Markets", began in mid-1978 and was
designed for use by the media to give
consumers information on price trends
and background on the food industry.
During 1978, work began on a directory
of the B.C. food and beverage industry, a
vegetable marketing guide and an analysis
of the B.C. mushroom processing industry.
page eighteen
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Most B.C. commercial daily farms have sophisticated
equipment within their milking parlours to maintain
wholesome and clean milk.
The major function of this branch is to
ensure wholesome milk and dairy products.
MEk production remained static at 399
miEion Etres, while fluid rmlk sales at the
retaE level registered a significant 4.2 per
cent increase during the year. Sales of
semi-fluid milk products such as cottage
cheese and yogurt, etc. increased by about
6.5 per cent. Butter production was down
by 18 per cent to 4.64 mEEon pounds.
Cheddar cheese production increased by
26.5 per cent to 4.19 mEEon pounds. Ice
cream mix production at 4.15 miEion
gaEons was unchanged from 1977.
With constant mEk production and
increased demand for fluid and semi-fluid
products as weE as cheddar cheese, the
milk supply for industrial products such as
butter and powder was inadequate. At
year-end, this was affecting the efficiency
of the only butter/powder plant in the
province, to the extent that the viability of
this sector of the dairy industry was in
page twenty
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Farm cash receipts from dairying for
1978 were estimated to be $ 122 mEEon. A
forthcoming adjustment of federal subsidy
payments under the market share
program scheduled for March 31,1979 will
cause a slight revision of this estimate.
The number of approved B.C. dairy
farriers is 1,166 which is a decrease of 51
during the year. There was a reduction of
50 shippers during 1977 and a reduction
of 70 in 1976. The provincial dairy herd
increased by 1,500 head to 83,500 at July
The mEk quality program continued
through the inspection of farm premises
and dairy plants, and the monitoring of
product quaEty at the dairy laboratory.
Regulations regarding the grading of mffk
were amended to provide for a system of
levies to encourage high quality mEk. This
system was tested during the last quarter
of 1978 and will come into effect on
January 1,1979.
A pilot mastitis control program began
in 1978 to assist dairymen with on-farm
mastitis detection and sample screening
prior to laboratory analysis. The veterinary
laboratory provided specific pathogen
identification and recommended the
appropriate selective antibiotic.
Mycoplasma bovis, a causative pathogen
of mastitis was identified in three herds.
The recommended control procedure for
this organism is the cuEing of aE infected
cows as antibiotics are ineffective.
Associated with the greater interest in
mastitis control was an increased number
of requests for mEkirig equipment analysis
and checks for the presence of tingle
voltage. It was evident that properly
performing equipment improved mEk
quality, mEk production efficiency and
herd health.
Seven Year Production/Utilization Summary
for Milk Board Areas
Millions of Litres
Per Gent of
Per Cent of
(Qualifying Milk)
Quota Milk
Fluid Sales
page twenty-one
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
A honeybee stock improvement project under DATE was carried out to develop stock for B.C. conditions.
page twenty-two
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
D JLT.E. Program
The D.AT.E. (Demonstration of
Agricultural Technology and Economics)
Program continued in 1978 to fund
projects aimed at demonstrating new
advances in agricultural technology.
Achievements that merit special note are:
- A honeybee stock improvement project
has been funded to assist in the
development of local honeybee stock
selected for British Columbia conditions.
This program could open a market
opportunity for packaged B.C. queens as
weE as improve local honey production.
Over 100 beekeepers are assisting in the
evaluation of selected stock.
- A very successful biological fly control
project operated in poultry houses in the
Fraser VaEey has demonstrated a new fly
control technique. Through the combined
use of parasites and chemicals it should
be possible to develop more effective fly
control programs on B.C. poultry farms.
- The range seeder project enjoyed another
successful year in which over 3,500 acres
of rangeland were renovated by the 12ft.
model. A smaller 9 ft. seeder for use with
traditional ranch equipment has now
been fabricated and wiE be tested In the
spring of 1979. This project was started
under DATE., then received funding
under the D.RE AM. Program
(Development Research Evaulation in
Agricultural Mechanization - Agriculture
Canada), and is now funded for a
three-year period under AR.D.SA for
- The selenium deficiency study on
Southern Vancouver Island indicated
that 90% of homegrown forages are
deficient in selenium. As a result of this
study, local feed companies are
considering supplementing feed suppEes
with selenium. Farmers have been
advised of the results through the local
press and extension office.
Testing continued for bronchitis virus
strains in order to develop more effective
Interlaken and Himrod, B.C. grown table
grapes, were market tested this year,
with promising results. Storage
characteristics of these grapes, utilizing
SOg, were also evaluated. Consumers
were prepared to pay $0.69 a lb. for these
B.C. grown table grapes.
■ The brood cow project is at the stage
where the first crop of calves from the
Fraser Reds has been produced. These
calves wiE be RO.P. tested and probably
exhibited at the Provincial Winter Fair in
1979. The Fraser Reds exhibited exceEent
brood cow characteristics, i.e. ease of
deEvery when mated with larger exotic
buEs, good milk production and good
foraging potential.
In 1978 the branch continued to provide
engineering advice to the agricultural
Industry on irrigation, drainage, farm
buEdings, waste management,
mechanization and land development.
Service to farmers in the southern Interior
was improved by a new branch office at
the Summerland Research Station.
In the Okanagan-SimEkameen area, the
number of trickle irrigation systems
continued to increase. Tricklers require
significantly less energy and water than
sprinklers. Water quality and equipment
assessment projects identified the type of
filtration, chlorination and line flushing
equipment needed for trouble-free trickier
A detaUed report of irrigation potential
in the Asheroft-Savona area was
completed in support of an assessment of
forage production capabEities for the beef
cattle Industry.
Staff were active in the formation of the
Irrigation Association of British Columbia,
anticipating that it will encourage a high
standard of service to the farming
Drainage work increased with the
avaEabEity of two new dram instaEation
machines operated by a drainage firm
page twenty-three
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
New barns and other farm structures were built according to
developed by professional staff of the Engineering Branch.
that was financially assisted through
ARDSA The greatest increase occurred on
Vancouver Island where approximately
250,000 feet of drains were instaEed
compared to 25,000 in previous years.
Interior native meadow development again
received considerable emphasis. Nine
surveys and water management plans
were completed covering 1,400 acres.
Detailed plans for underground drainage
systems were prepared for a limited
number of farms outside of the Fraser
There was a substantial involvement in
implementation of regional water
management schemes funded by ARDSA.
At year-end assistance had been provided
to 26 groups of farmers in preparing
appEcations, feasibEity studies and
supervising construction.
Farm Structures
About 650 farmers and ranchers used
the farm structures advisory service
during 1978. On-site farmstead planning
and the avaUabElty of detailed working
drawings are main features of the
program. Sales of plans increased by 50
per cent over 1977. There was a dramatic
increase in the number of new swine
production units under construction.
The structures advisory service is weE
established in the Fraser VaEey,
particularly in the dairy and poultry
industries. The wide dairy barn with two
rows of free stalls on either side of a
drive-through feed alley has been very
popular -125 of these units have been
buEt in the past few years.
Some branch emphasis wEl now be
shifted to the Interior to develop
backgrounding and feedlot facEities for an
expanding beef cattle industry.
Waste Management
The waste management advisory service
continued to provide farmers with
up-to-date technical advice on waste
management systems including coEection,
storage, handling and disposal of waste
waters, manure and dead animals.
The dramatic increase in swine
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
production units strained the
environmental control program and the
minimum distance separation technique
used for siting farm and residential
buEdlngs to minimize odour problems.
Negative pubEc reaction to some types of
intensive livestock operations increased
substantially in 1978.
Mechanization and
Land Development
The mechanization program continued
to cover a broad range of activities
Including: general farmstead
mechanization; equipment combinations
for harvesting, storing and feeding of
forage; fruit and vegetable harvesting;
grain harvesting and drying; and
equipment maintenance and spare parts
Projects on range and pasture reseeding
were continued to increase forage
production for an expanding beef cattle
industry in the province. The equipment
development project for seeding interior
rangeland is of notable interest. During
the year, 3,300 acres of range were
reseeded in the southern and central
regions of the province. A second smaEer
seeding unit was constructed for use by
ranchers who wish to do their own seeding
With an estimated $ 1 miEion loss of
grain in the Peace River in 1978 due to
poor harvest weather, steps are being
taken to increase extension and
demonstration activities on grain drying
and handling facEities.
Special Assignments
Special assignments for other branches
in the ministry and other government
agencies formed a part of branch staff
activities. Some of these included:
- review of effluent irrigation proposals for
Princeton, Kamloops and Cranbrook
- drainage proposals for B.C. Forest Service
Nurseries and Parks Branch parkland
- engineering advice on farms
administered by Property Management
- design checks on 116 Erigation systems
submitted to Agricultural Credit Branch
for ALDA loans
- design, tendering and construction
supervision on modifications to the
TranquEle BuE Test Station
- preEminary engineering on projects such
as vegetable storage, crop processing
plants, feedlots funded through Farm
Products Finance or ARDSA
- design of community pasture corrals
funded through ARDSA
- on-site inspections for the Agricultural
Land Commission
- assistance in developing the concept of
commodity core committees for planning
ministry extension programs.
The major responsibEity of the
Entomology-Plant Pathology Branch is to
provide information on controEing plant
diseases, insects and mites. The branch
also develops controls for vertebrates such
as deer, rodents, moles and bEds.
Throughout 1978 branch staff
conducted training courses and
educational programs for farmers,
orchardists, greenhouse operators and
homeowners; in addition, field trials were
carried out to evaluate pest control
Tree Fruits/Grapes
The second year of an 800-acre pilot
apple pest management program was
completed using a private consultant,
supported by the provincial government
and growers.
A pear pest management program was
completed on 170 acres in the Kelowna
Unseasonably heavy rains in August
and September led to a serious outbreak of
botrytis grey mold particularly in white
grape varieties. The disease was most
severe in Kelowna and other mid-vaEey
Two insects, codling moth and pear
psyEa, were of major concern in
Okanagan orchards.
The wet weather caused a serious
page twenty-five
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
A poultry specialist and entomologist jointly worked on a projeet using a parasitic wasp to control manure breeding flies in eg
producing operations.
outbreak of brown rot blossom blight in
apricots and spEtting in cherries. Apple
powdery mEdew increased in Mcintosh
and Golden DeEcious varieties.
Little cherry disease continued to take
its toE; 193 infected trees were discovered,
38 of which were in Kelowna, four in
Winfield, three in Naramata and 12 in
Penticton. The disease has spread north to
Kelowna and Winfield.
Nursery Industry
The continuing disease survey program
in the Fraser VaEey has gradually reduced
the pear trelEs rust (pear jumper rust)
threat. Efforts to eliminate infected jumper
plants which perpetuate the fungus from
year to year has resulted in 13 of 30
nurseries being certified free of pear trellis
rust. This permitted those nurseries to sell
junipers outside the quarantined Fraser
Valley area.
A biological control program began
against winter moth on southern
Vancouver Island. Winter moth is a severe
defoEator of ornamental trees, shrubs and
fruit trees. A European species of parasites
wiE be introduced in an attempt to bring
moth populations under control.
A trapping program was conducted In
the Fraser and Okanagan Valleys to
determine if the winter moth had spread
to these areas. The branch cooperated with
the Canadian Forestry Service and
Agriculture Canada in preparing a special
bulletin on the control of winter moth.
In cooperation with federal forestry
experts and the B.C. Nursery Trades
Association, a plan was formulated to
combat the highly destructive gypsy moth
found in the Lower Mainland during 1978.
This insect, which attacks the leaves of
deciduous trees, has caused extensive
damage in eastern North America.
Inspection for European pine shoot
moth was continued. This program began
in 1974 when four of the 38 growers
inspected faEed to pass inspection
standards. In 1978,10 growers were not
certified of the 163 inspected.
page twenty-six
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Greenhouse Industry
A program was established for the mass
rearing of predators and parasites to
control mites and whiteflies in commercial
tomato and cucumber greenhouses.
Rearing facEities were set up at Cloverdale
and Saanichton. Eighteen growers were
suppEed in 1978. It is anticipated that aE
interested growers on the Mainland and
Vancouver Island will be suppEed in 1979.
A mlticide, PEctran, was tested and
found effective for mite control in
greenhouses. The chemical kiEs the
harmful mites but not the predators.
(Residue samples were obtained and
chemical registration requested.
Biological Fly Control
In cooperation with the Poultry Branch,
a DATE project was carried out to evaluate
the use of a parasitic wasp to control
rnanure-breeding flies in egg producing
operations. Fly numbers in the barn using
the biological agent were considerably
lower than in an adjacent barn using
chemical control methods. The operators
also noted a marked decrease in hen
mortality and an increase in egg
production when chemicals ceased to be
used in the test barn. The lack of
chemicals also permitted a buildup of
naturally occurring fly parasites and
predators that further contributed to
control. Six egg producers in the Fraser
Valley are now using parasites for fly
Mosquito Control
Biological agents, including swaEows
and an Insect predator, were evaluated for
mosquito control. Mosquito control advice
was provided to Cassiar, Fort NeEion, Kaslo,
Prince George and area, Kamloops,
Merritt, and the Okanagan and Fraser
VaEeys. Mosquito populations were low in
most parts of the province due to light
snowpack and, hence, low spring river levels.
Vertebrate Pest Control
The impact of vertebrate pests on
agriculture was monitored.
Rodenticide trials were conducted for
pocket gopher and ground squirrel control
in the Okanagan and East Kootenay
regions. These trials wEl lead to
registration of two new products; one
contains an anti-coagulant, the other
Deer repeEent trials were conducted in
the Okanagan Valley and in the Creston
Student Program
Thirty-one summer students employed
under the accelerated agriculture
program, funded by the Ministry of
Labour, worked with branch staff at
Cloverdale, Kelowna, Summerland and
Victoria. In addition, a number of students
were assigned to Agriculture Canada
Research Stations and three provincial
The extra student help enabled these
institutions to expand their research in
entomology and plant pathology.
The SoEs Branch is concerned with the
efficient use and conservation of British
Columbia's soE resource.
The branch continued to provide
advisory services to the agricultural
industry in 1978, from four locations:
Victoria, Cloverdale, Kelowna and Prince
George. Branch activities were
concentrated in five major categories: soils
advisory services to farmers; soE, feed and
tissue testing services; administration of
the SoE Conservation Act; inter-rriinisterial
resource related activities; and technical
services to the Provincial Agricultural
Land Commission.
Advisory Services
Branch staff provided advisory services
to growers on request in the central and
southern Interior, Kootenay, Lower
Mainland and Vancouver Island regions.
SoE drainage investigations were carried
out on more than 2,000 acres in the Lower
Mainland, Interior and Vancouver Island.
Drainage activity reached an aE-time high
page twenty-seven
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
with the installation of weE over one
million feet of dram tile, of which about
250,000 feet were instaEed on Vancouver
Island. Irrigation information on avaEable
water storage capacities and appEcation
rates was prepared for 650 soil samples
submitted by farmers during Erigation
workshops held throughout the province
and by commercial Erigation designers.
Additional advisory services included
recommendations on a wide variety of soil
related problems meluding soil
management, soE test and fertilizer
requEements, crop suitability and
Soil, Feed and Tissue Testing
A 25 per cent increase in demand for
SoE, Feed and Tissue Testing Laboratory
services occurred in 1978. About 13,660
soE samples were received requEing about
123,000 Individual analyses. Feed and
tissue sample tests increased about 12
percent to 6,708 in 1978.
Extension activities related to soil
fertility, plant nutrition, fertilizer
recommendations and animal nutrition
were maintained In conjunction with other
branches, Agriculture Canada and the
University of British Columbia.
Approximately 38 per cent of the soil
samples and 61 per cent of the feed and
tissue samples were processed in support
of these activities.
Fertilizer and animal feeding
recommendations based on laboratory
analyses continued to benefit producers
Soil Conservation
SoE conservation activities Increased
significantly in 1978, foEowing
amendments to the SoE Conservation Act
and its regulations. Permits issued by
Regional Districts and Municipalities, with
the approval of the Provincial Agricultural
Land Commission, resulted in more
effective control over soE removal and land
filling operations in the Agricultural Land
Reserves. Advisory services were provided
to appEcants, local authorities and the
The Soil, Feed and Tissue Testing Laboratory at Kelowna
gives farmers fertilizer or animal feed requirements based on
samples of soil or feedstuffs submitted for analysis.
page twenty-eight
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Resource Planning
Advice was provided on mter-ministerial
resource issues mcluding mining
proposals, electrical power transmission
line corridors, coal and other
developmental projects. A number of
environment reports were reviewed
relative to the agricultural impact of such
developments. Branch specialists provided
advice to various provincial, regional and
municipal government agencies on soil,
water, land use and planning matters
through appropriate regional committees.
Land Commission Technical
Technical services to the Provincial
Agricultural Land Commission on soils,
agricultural capabEity, land use and
related matters were provided in 1978. A
total of 150 on-site inspections were
carried out; reports and recommendations
were prepared regarding 16,500 acres
under appeal to the Commission.
dairy herd on Vancouver Island and
resulted in heavy production losses. In
order to control the spread of this disease,
it was made a "named" disease under the
provincial Contagious Disease (Animals)
Act. Subsequently, apoEcy was developed
whereby the iriinistry would assist
dairymen in an attempt to eliminate this
potentially serious disease.
Unusual Cattle Losses
Two ranches in the Burns Lake area
suffered heavy losses of cattle as a result of
blue-green algae poisoning. The algae
buEdup was attributed to the stagnation of
water due to restricted drainage.
One beef herd in the Quesnel area had
high calf losses and abortions possibly
caused by a parasite picked up from
There were no cases of equine
encephalomyeEtis reported. Undoubtedly,
the routine vaccinaton of horses against
this disease played a major role in its
The Veterinary Branch is responsible for
animal health information and disease
control programs. It provides a laboratory
diagnostic service, brand inspection
services and oversees the sale of veterinary
drugs by licenced dispensers.
The branch cooperated with the federal
health of animals branch in control and
eradication of BruceEosis under the federal
Animal Disease and Protection Act. Two
outbreaks of BruceEosis occurred in the
province during 1978. One was in the 100
MUe House area and the other in a
community pasture in the Dawson Creek
area. The overall incidence of BruceEosis
decEned in British Columbia, as weE as in
the rest of Canada.
Mycoplasma Mastitis
During 1978, the first case of bovine
mycoplasma mastitis was diagnosed in a
Mink Industry
A severe outbreak of mink distemper
occurred in the Abbotsford area.
Approximately 7,000 mink died because of
this disease.
A further two-year agreement was
reached between the ministry and the
Mink Producers' Association to continue
testing for Aleutian Disease. Under this
agreement another 40,000 mink wiE be
tested by March 1979. Currently, 12
producers are using this test to eliminate
Aleutian Disease from production units.
Meat Inspection
1978 marked the first full year for the
federal-domestic meat inspection program.
Under this program, the Ministry of
Agriculture transferred aE meat inspection
work to the federal government on a
fee-fbr-service basis. AbattoEs that meet
construction standards can apply for the
federal-domestic meat inspection program.
Veterinary Laboratory
The veterinary laboratory at Abbotsford
page twenty-nine
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Veterinary Branch staff were involved in a variety of livestock disease control programs, brand inspection and laboratory
animal diseases.
serves the Evestock and poultry industries
in British Columbia. In 1978, about 7,000
submissions were received at the
laboratory. This represented an increase of
14 per cent over the previous year. Special
emphasis on diagnostic virology led to a
greater capability in the identification of
many viruses.
At year end, the laboratory continued a
number of projects manned partiaEy by
auxiliary staff from the accelerated
agriculture program. These programs
(a) Mastitis survey - A pEot program is
underway that involves the testing of
cows for mastitis foEowed by laboratory
testing for the most effective control
(b) Mycoplasma survey - Tissue samples
(mEk, poultry, cattle and swine) in
which mycoplasma infection could be
discovered are under test. To date, 1,030
samples have been examined. During
the same period in 1977 only 21
samples were tested. Forty-nine cases of
mycoplasma-induced disease have been
documented in the province.
(c) VEal immunity - This project provides
poultrymen and livestock producers
with information regarding the
irrrmunity status of their animals. The
information aEows producers to
maintain a higher level of animal
health with respect to viral infections.
(d) VEal testing agent and technique -
Laboratory staff are attempting to
isolate and purify a mink virus agent
used in vEal testing and are developing
a special technique to perform vEal
serology. If successful, these procedures
wiE greatly expedite vEal testing of
mink and could result in a saving of
$30,000 annually.
(e) Trace mineral deficiency study - A
project is underway to determine the
level of certain trace minerals requEed
to maintain animal health. During
1978 two trace minerals, copper and
selenium, were studied as they are
suspected of causing significant
production losses.
page thirty
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Brand Inspection
New brand inspection procedures were
formulated, in consultation with the B.C.
Cattlemen's Association, to permit brand
inspectors to maintain efficient service
whEe reducing inspection costs. In 1977
the brand inspection program achieved 46
per cent seE-sufficiency.
The workload remained fairly constant
during 1978. Statistics showed a 4.8 per
cent decrease in the number of cattle
leaving the province; a 6.7 per cent
increase in the number of cattle
slaughtered in facEities not under
inspection; and a 12 per cent increase in
the number of horned cattle shipped.
Horned cattle accounted for 4.7 per cent of
total shipments in 1978.
An advisory committee was set up to
receive and review appEcations for grants
from the Horned Cattle Fund. Grants
totalling $93,573.59 were made from the
The branch is responsible for
administering the 4-H and farm vacation
programs. It also provides input to the
International Agricultural Exchange
4-H is an informal, educational and
recreational program for young people
throughout British Columbia. Boys and
gEls from nine to 19 years of age have the
opportunity to join a variety of programs.
4-H members are encouraged to develop
skills in many areas; eg. technical
projects, public speaking and social
involvement. In 1978,3,576 members and
776 leaders enroEed in 262 4-H clubs in
British Columbia.
As is traditional, 4-H members
participated in national and international
travel and exchange programs during
1978. "Energy Use in the Food System",
and the federal system of government
were some of the topics encountered by
4-H members attending national
programs. The interprovincial 4-H
exchange celebrated its 16th year as a
major 4-H program. For the first time the
Norgan Foundation of the Pacific National
Exhibition sponsored an exchange of four
4-H members to the state of Oregon. B.C.
and Nova Scotia participated in the
summer work exchange. In addition, there
were district and regional exchanges
mvolving other areas of Canada and the
United States. Over 100 4-H members from
British Columbia exchanged with
members from Newfoundland, Nova Scotia
and Prince Edward Island in the federal
Secretary of State funded "Open House
Canada" program.
4-H members were involved in two new
projects during 1978:
- in cooperation with B.C. Hydro, an
"Energy Conservation" project was
developed. It provided the 4-H members
and leaders with information on energy
conservation. 4-H clubs were encouraged
to develop educational displays on this
- a farm safety program was initiated by
the B.C. Federation of Agriculture in
cooperation with the B.C. 4-H executive
councE and the Engineering and Youth
Development Branches of the B.C.
Ministry of Agriculture. 4-H members in
the Matsqui-Sumas Prairie areas of the
Fraser Valley visited farmers and gave
them an information kit related to farm
safety. 4-H members placed "FEst Think
Safety" decals on tractors and other farm
equipment during theE visit. Although a
pilot project in 1978, it was considered a
valuable community service and may be
extended to other areas of the province
in the future.
During 1978,4-H members supported a
self-help funding project of the British
Columbia 4-H Foundation. The project wiE
provide funds for additional 4-H programs
over the long-term.
Farm Vacation Program
Under this program approximately 500
people took vacations on British Columbia
farms and ranches in 1978. Vacations
averaged five days for a total of 2,480
vacation days taken. The Youth
Development Branch prepared and
distributed a Est of participating farm
vacation hosts. This program provides
page thirty-one
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
farmers and ranchers with an alternate
source of income. It also offers urban
people an opportunity to take a farm
hoEday and learn about agriculture.
International Agricultural
Exchange Program
IAEA is a program which emphasizes
agricultural education and training in
another country. It also stresses cultural
The International Agricultural Exchange
program provided rural young people from
British Columbia with the opportunity to
travel to one of more than 15 countries to
work and stay with a farm famEy for
periods up to eight months.
In 1978, 11 young British Columbians
traveEed to Australia, New Zealand and
European countries. Forty young people
from Europe, AustraEa and New Zealand
were hosted on British Columbia farms
during 1978. Participants in this program
were paid a standard training aEowance.
The Youth Development Branch assists the
IAEA in organizing the program in British
4-H specialists cooperated with B.C. Hydro on an energy
conservation project.
page thirty-two
  Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
The Apiculture Branch provides
specialist services and advice to honey
producers, government, processors, fruit
and seed growers. Its work covers three
mam categories; extension, regulation and
polEnatlon consulting and research.
The total honey crop during 1978 was
1,994,920 kg (4.4 miEion pounds), a
decrease of 409,144 kg (901,997 pounds)
from 1977. Beekeepers on Vancouver
Island produced 530,185 kg (1,168,845
pounds) of honey from fireweed which
grows on logged-off areas awaiting
reforestation; an exceEent second crop
return. This honey crop was just 122,995
kg (271,155 pounds) less than the Peace
River crop of 653,180 kg (1,440,000
Active beekeepers in the province
numbered 5,200, a gam of 252 producers
since 1977. The number of producing
hives increased to 50,000 in 1978 from
47,000 in 1977. This increase in producers
and hives is attributed to the record honey
crop in 1977.
The wholesale price for honey continued
to improve. Also, short suppEes and
improved prices for honey resulted in
better financial returns for honey producers.
The price of No. 1 white honey in bulk
229 kg (660 pound) barrels ranged
between $1.15 to $1.17 per kg (52$ to 53$
per pound).
Seven trafler truekloads of honey were
shipped from the Peace River to packers in
the U.S.
The remainder of our honey crop,
1,341,740 kg (2,958,000 pounds) was sold
through local retaE outlets or on-farm
sales. The on-farm price for honey
averaged $ 1.65 to $ 1.76 kg (75$ to 80$ per
In cooperation with the Farm Economics
Branch, the branch's three producers'
consensus costs-and-returns studies were
updated. One additional study was done on
honey production on Vancouver Island
and on the economics of overwintering
bees in a controEed atmosphere building.
For the third year, honey producers in
British Columbia were given assistance to
compensate for hive damage by bears and
subsequent loss of crop.
This assistance was provided under the
"Beeyard-Bear Protection Incentive
Program". Financial assistance was
provided in the form of grants to honey
producers to assist in the construction of
bear-proof electric fences or other
satisfactory protective devices.
There was a sEght increase in the
incidence of American foulbrood disease,
although most other infectious bee
diseases declined.
There was a marked increase in the
Installation of chain link fence around beehives.
page thirty-four
• # 9, ■/.-*
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
number of honey bee colonies infected
with Chalkbrood. This fungus disease
increased from 1.73 per cent in 1977 to
4.77 per cent in 1978. No cure for this
disease has yet been found.
British Columbia beekeepers continued
to provide a valuable pollination service to
fruit growers through the offices of the
Okanagan Valley PoEination Association
and the Fraser Valley SmaE Fruit Growers'
Work was started on a DATE project
"Bee Breeding and Honeybee Stock
Improvement". This is a three-year project
designed to provide a reservoir of honeybee
breeding stock which will be free of
African/Brazilian hybrid genes. If
I successful, this project will enable British
Columbia beekeepers to produce improved
bee stock for theE own use and for sale.
A total of 412 queens of both Italian and
Carniolan stock were produced and
distributed to British Columbia producers
for evaluation.
A total of 200 four-frame nuclei with
queens were overwintered in our
controlled atmosphere building at
Cloverdale. This facility was constructed
under a DATE project and is providing an
invaluable addition to our bee breeding
For the fifth consecutive year,
experimental apiaries were located at
Interior fireweed areas of British Columbia.
Bear protective devices were tested and
honey production recorded. The results of
this work showed it possible to protect
apiaries from bear predation by means of
electric fences and specially designed
pallets on which the hives are placed and
covered with chain link fencing.
Production of fireweed honey in the
Interior of British Columbia is more
reliable at elevations of 610 to 914 metres
(2,000 to 3,000 feet).
Other project work included methods of
controlling Chalkbrood disease in
honeybees, poEination attractiveness of
blueberry varieties, fumigation of diseased
beehive equipment using ethylene oxide,
management of leaf cutter bees in alfalfa
poEination, and the use of honeybees to
poEinate raspberries and white dutch
clover on the Creston flats.
A member of the Apiculture Branch was
present on a national committee of the
Canadian Honey CouncE and the
Canadian Association of Professional
Apiculturists. This committee acts in an
advisory capacity to the federal Health of
Animals Branch and is concerned with
importation of disease-free honeybee stock
into Canada.
1978 was a productive year, made
possible through exceEent work performed
by students hired under the Ministry of
Labour Accelerated Agriculture Program
and the Summer Student Program.
Completed installation of chain link fence around:beehives to
prevent damage by bears.
Development and
The Development and Extension Branch
provides advisory services to farmers in
B.C. through branch field staff at 18
district offices across the province. District
agriculturists give technical advice on crop
and animal production, farm business
management and marketing. The staff
deal with farmers through personal
consultation and regional and district
extension programs.
The branch acts as a coordmating focal
point in bringing together services of
various ministry branches while
page thirty-five
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
adriiinistering the extension programs.
Legislation andpoEcy of other government
ministries are also considered with theE
impEcations to agriculture.
During 1978, district agriculturists
conducted workshops, seminars and field
days. The staff also prepared radio and
television programs and newsletters for
direct mail.
During 1978, a new extension structure
was developed for closer program
coordination between branches. This
involved establishment of regional
commodity core extension committees
which included: The Fraser Valley Dairy
Core Extension Committee, Southern
Interior Forage Core Extension Committee
and the Lower Mainland Forage Core
Extension Committee. The committees
were set up as a long-term program for
producers in that particular comrnodity.
Other regional extension committees
continued related to North Okanagan
Dairy Extension, Range Extension, Swine
Education, Central Interior Forage, Lower
Fraser Valley Beef Feedlot, Vancouver
Island Program Development and East
Kootenay Range Extension. AE of these
committees were designed to give
producers the opportunity to discuss
production, economics and marketing of
theE specific commodity.
Branch staff continued to be involved in
all aspects of B.C. agriculture. They
provided advice on aE aspects of crop
production, animal health-management
programs and farm management
programs. During 1978, the branch was
very active in programs dealing with
improving British Columbia's forage
production. Large volumes of alfalfa
continued to be imported to meet Lower
Mainland and Vancouver Island markets.
Branch programs, in conjunction with
other branches, were aimed to enable B.C.
producers to supply a larger percentage of
the local market. Demonstration field days
dealt with varieties, weed control, soil
fertiEty and nutrition.
Branch staff were also involved in other
specific field crop programs mvolving
drainage, crop variety and fertility trials of
wetlands in the Cariboo region. Since
weeds continued to be a problem
throughout the province, a number of
weed control programs were mamtamed
Special extension committees were set up to
the development of
production in the southern Interior and Lower Mainland
 **• * '•      •
■Mb* ... * *.•.,.».
page thirty-aix
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
and in particular, a dEfuse knapweed
control program in conjunction with field
crops branch staff in the southern Interior
and Cariboo.
During the year, extension branch staff
cooperated with other branches and the
B.C. Cattlemen's Association in developing
a livestock survey which dealt with
backgrounding and fmishing of beef
cattle. A pubEcation called the Beef
Feeding Guide was also started during the
year. A financial management course for
B.C. cattle producers was also developed to
conjunction with the B.C. Cattlemen's
Swine markets continued to be strong m
1978 resulting in high producer interest.
As a result, branch staff were actively
involved to a study to analyze minimum
distances between hog facEities and urban
areas in the ChEEwack district. In
conjunction with the Dairy Branch,
extension branch staff was involved in a
mastitis control program in the Fraser
Valley. Concerning the beef R.O.P. (Record
of Performance) program, branch
involvement shifted from supervisor of the
weighing to interpretation of the data.
B.C. farmers have shown much greater
interest and need for counseEing on farm
I business management, taxation and
financing. During 1978, extension staff
participated in workshops and seminars
for beef cattlemen and other groups. In
conjunction with the Farm Economics
Branch, a mobile farm management
education clinic toured the province
during the winter of 1978/79 and gave
local farmers a three-day course in
financial management. The course was
foEowed up by on-farm consultation and a
further seminar to review the material.
The federal government served notice
during the year that the SmaE Farm
Development Program will be terminated
as of March 31, 1979. Under this program,
extension branch staff supervised seven
field staff who dealt dEectly with smaE,
entering or part-time farmers across the
province. The program had high impact
during its tenure in giving advice on
financial management, resource use, farm
records, legislation and farm planning.
Numerous seminars, studies and
mini-programs were designed and given
under this program during 1978.
A branch member chaired the Green
Zone Committee which was set up in
January 1977 to design formulae for the
studying of new or expanded livestock
facEities in relation to neighbouring uses.
In May 1978, a pilot program involving a
swine operation was conducted in the
ChEEwack area to test the formulae. The
Green Zone Committee also developed an
information bank with site plans of
individual farms in the Lower Mainland.
A study and review of agricultural
development in the Fort Nelson area
resulted in a report published in late 1978
caEed "Agriculture Development and
Potential of Fort Nelson". The report
reviewed the history, climate, soil
capabEity, government poEcies and various
other concerns related to the Fort Nelson
area. The report concluded that the
ministry should be more actively involved
in assisting area farmers with
improvements and modern techniques.
The branch administered 12 community
pastures totalEng 384,000 acres in the
Peace River and Central B.C. regions.
Eleven of the pastures carried over 12,500
cattle during 1978, about 40 per cent more
than in 1977. The remaining pasture was
being developed for use in 1979. Problems
involvmg predators, disease and pasture
management continued during the year.
Extension programs were developed to
improve pasture management skills and a
management manual written as a guide
for pasture administration.
Branch staff acted in an agriculture
liaison role between agencies using the
land resource. Other government agencies
and user groups were represented on
committees dealing with regional resource
management, coordinated resource
management planning (range), technical
planning (settlement planning) and
problem wEdEfe management. During the
year, much time was devoted to studying
the predator problem on domestic livestock
and Okanagan orchards.
Numerous other projects were completed
and continued throughout the year
tocludlng studies on the Kootenay River
diversion, pasture research, cost-benefit
analysis of drainage and Erigation
proposals, the Hat Creek coal development,
the Peace River Dam Site C project, among
page thirty-seven
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Farm Economics
The Farm Economics Branch provides
assistance to farm managers, cornmodity
groups, farm organizations and B.C.
Ministry of Agriculture staff who request
guidance on farm business planning and
organization. Advice is given on financial
management, farm record and business
analysis systems, economic analysis of
production costs and proposed
development projects. To accomplish these
objectives, the branch publishes booklets
and factsheets on specific topics, conducts
economic studies and surveys, provides
instructors for short courses and
workshops, provides leadership in the
deEvery of farm record systems and
advanced farm planning techniques, and
offers individual cEent counseEing in the
economic and business management area.
During 1978, the foEowing activities
were carried out to assist farm managers
and theE advisors in the area of farm
business planning:
- the Mobile Farm Management Clinic
(funded by ARDSA) was organized on a
joint basis with the SmaE Farm
Development Program and the University
of British Columbia to deEver an in-depth
farm, business management education
program to ranchers. The course used a
mobEe classroom facEity to reach cEents
in rural areas.
a three-day "Planning for Profit"
workshop was developed in conjunction
with B.C. Institute of Technology. A
consulting firm delivered the course to
beef producers in eight areas of the
province. It was designed to teach
financial management and planning
techniques to beef producers using the
"case study" method.
■ economics and business planning
sections were compEed for the "Cattle
Feeding Guide" and "Cow-Calf Manual".
These publications were being completed
by ministry staff for distribution to beef
■ the pubEcations, "Farm Business
Partnerships in British Columbia - A
Laymen's Guide", "Farm Business
Partnerships in British Columbia -
Advisor's Guide" and "Sample Clauses for
Farm Business Partnership" were
produced to provide guidance to farm
business managers and theE advisors on
farm business partnerships. New
information was required as a result of
A mobile classroom was used to
provide ranchers with on-site
education seminars on farm business
page thirty-eight
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
FIGURE 1 -Use of Computerized Decision Aids
B.C. Ministry of Agriculture -1974 to 1978
!   '         '      \ ■
200 400 600
800        1000       1200
1400        1600        1800       2000
Farm Record and Business Analysis Program Enrollment
1970        1971 1972
1974   1975   1976   1977   1978
page thirty-nine
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
major changes to taxation legislation and
partnership legislation occurring in 1978.
- 18 issues of the "Farm Business
Management" factsheet on current topics
were researched, compEed and released.
- two films, "Planning Your Credit Needs"
and "How to Apply for Credit", were
completed in 1978 and used in the
mobEe farm management cEnic project,
the planning for profit workshops, and
other meetings. Several provinces and
agencies have requested the fiims for
theE use.
- the publication "Sources of Farm Credit
in British Columbia" was updated and
- a financial planning package entitled
"Farm Financial Plan" was compEed and
released. This package consists of six
worksheets to assist the farm manager
with the financial analysis and planning
of his business.
- the use of computerized decision aids
continued to provide better planning
information to farm cEents and were in
demand (figure 1). The foEowing aids
were avaflable:
- loan calculator program
- feedmix and dairymix programs
- cashplan and cashflow forecaster
- machinery replacement program
- machinery buy versus custom hire
- numerous workshops and short courses
were conducted on farm business
management topics including tax
management, business organization,
credit and financing, estate planning,
leasing versus ownership, etc.
The branch offered the B.C. Farm
Account book and Canfarm record service
to farm managers in British Columbia.
EnroEment In farm record programs
continued to increase in 1978 untE the
federal government announced its
decision to terminate funding for Canfarm
in 1979. Negotiations resulted in the
formation of Canfarm Cooperative Services
to operate the Canfarm system in 1979 at
higher cost to producers who use the
The total B.C. Ministry of Agriculture
enrollment on both record systems is
shown in Figure 2.
In 1976, the B.C. Farm Business
Management Advisory Committee
established guideEnes to allow private
firms to offer the Canfarm Record Service
and Computerized decision aids to farm
cEents. During 1978, 12 firms were
approved to offer these services. The firms
- WEson & Paterson, Dawson Creek
- Mr. Frank Lee, Victoria
- Mr. H.H. Groenwold, H.R. Lucas,
- Northwest Agrinomics Limited, Clearbrook
- G.B. PhiElps, Smithers
- K.P. Wiebe, Clearbrook
- McKnight, Johnson & Company,
ChEEwack, Abbotsford
- Ted Osborne, Vernon
- Canadian Bio-Resources Limited, Surrey
- MacDonald & Pluntz, Abbotsford
- Touche, Ross & Company, Langley
- R.G. (Bob) Holtby, Prince George
During 1978, the costs and returns for
several agricultural cornmodities were
studied with the foEowing reports being
- CDS 191 Alfalfa Hay (revised); Salmon
- CDS 192 Corn Silage (revised); Salmon
- CDS 199 SEage, Hay and Pasture
(revised); Vanderhoof
- CDS 208 Corn SEage (revised): Comox
- CDS 212 Corn SEage; Aldergrove-Langley
- CDS 216 Alfalfa Hay, WUEams Lake
- CDS 217 Uplands TEnothy - Clover and
Native Hay; WEEams Lake
- CDS 219 SEage, Hay and Pasture;
- CDS 222 Land Clearing and
Development; Smithers
- CDS 223 Hay and Pasture; Vanderhoof
- CDS 224 Non-Irrigated Winter Wheat and
Alfalfa Hay; Vernon
- CDS 226 Corn SEage; Kamloops
In 1978, the branch established an
experimental project to gather farm input
(factor) cost data from suppEers on a
monthly basis. The project data coEection
procedures and analyses were pre-tested
on Vancouver Island prior to
implementation in the Fraser Valley. By
year-end, data was being coEected and
analyzed on 80 input items.
During 1978, the branch responded to
requests for involvement in feasibility
studies on resource development projects
page forty
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
by conducting several economic
benefit-cost analyses. Projects where
analysis was completed or Is ongoing
- benefit-cost analysis on the drainage and
Erlgation scheme proposed for the
- benefit-cost analysis on the proposed East
Delta Water Management project
- benefit-cost analysis on an irrigation
project in the Cowlchan area
- benefit-cost analysis on an Erigation and
drainage project in the East Kootenays
In addition, several benefit-cost analyses
developed by other firms were reviewed for
the ministry.
In 1978, the branch continued to Eaise
with the B.C. Systems Corporation and
coordinate the development and use of
computer systems within the Ministry of
Agriculture. Major activities included the
strearnEning of the computer programs
associated with the Dairy Herd
Improvement Analysis program with
major modifications to handle metric units
and other new specifications.
In addition to changes to the Dairy Herd
Improvement Analysis program, the
organization of data processing for the
foEowing ongoing projects was carried out:
- interest reimbursement program
- B.C. farm account book program and
Canfarm Comparative Analysis project
- Youth Development statistics program
- consensus data studies
- data analysis for sprinkler irrigation
- "green zone" project
- farm machinery cost study
Considerable effort has been made to
streamEne liaison procedures with B.C.
Systems Corporation. Staff awareness and
training projects were carried out on the
"Infomart" program and "Cansian"
During 1978, the branch represented
the B.C. Ministry of Agriculture on several
provincial, regional and national
committees relating to its work area. The
branch participated in the meetings of the
Canada Committee on Farm Management
Services, Canfarm Advisory Committee,
Canada-British Columbia SmaE Farm
Development Program Coordinating
Committee, the Western Farm
Management Extension Committee, the
B.C. Farm Business Management Advisory
Committee and the management
committee of the Federal-Provincial Feed
Freight Assistance Adjustment Fund
Field Crops
The Field Crops Branch is responsible
for specialist services related to all field
crops, range management, soE, fertility
and weeds in British Columbia.
Growing conditions in 1978 were not as
favourable as in 1977. Crop yields in the
Peace River were reduced by a
combination of summer drought and very
wet conditions at harvest. Much of the first
crop alfalfa in the southern Interior was of
lower quality because of wet weather. On
the coast, dry conditions in July caused
considerable stress on non-Erlgated crops
and very wet conditions in the fall delayed
harvest. However, range productivity
throughout the Interior was exceEent and
warm, dry conditions prevailed in all
regions in October, allowing completion of
the harvest.
The most significant development of the
year was the increase of 110 per cent in
rapeseed'acreage over 1977. At 180,000
acres, rapeseed became the largest annual
crop in British Columbia to terms of area.
The swing to rapeseed was caused by
reduced prices for cereals and a
continuation of reasonably good prices for
rapeseed. Rapeseed movement to the
crushers was relatively good but deEvery
quotas of aE grains were limited.
Although 1978 hay and silage
production varied considerably and was
somewhat lower in quality, the total
amount produced was estimated to be the
same as in 1977; i.e., 1.9 mEEon tons from
670,000 acres at 2.8 tons per acre. Imports
of alfalfa from Washington into the Lower
Mainland and Vancouver Island stood at
80,185 tons for the first nine months of
1978 as compared to 95,530 tons for 1977.
However, because of the lower quality of
local forage, total imports for the year were
expected to be in excess of 100,000 tons.
Production of sEage corn increased to
24,000 acres, the highest on record, with
an average yield of sEghtly under 21 tons
page forty-one
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
green weight. There was a definite trend
towards eariier maturing varieties.
A decrease of 1,000 acres in the potato crop
to just under 10,000 acres was attributed to
the decline of the processing market.
Forage seed production was about the
same as in 1977. The Creeping Red Fescue
crop was the smallest since the late 1940s,
causing prices to increase. This total
reduction in seed acreage was offset by
increased production of alsike clover seed.
As in previous years, the Field Crops
Branch was involved with demonstration
and applied research projects with farmer
cooperators throughout the province and
cooperated fuEy with research stations and
the University of B.C. Under the
Accelerated Agriculture Program, 64
young people were hired to assist field staff
with project work. Approximately one-half
of these people were assigned to research
stations to work on projects directly
appEcable to production agriculture. At
West Quesnel for example, the effect of
boron with and without fertilizer on an old
stand of alfalfagrass was measured. An
appEcatlon of 60 lbs. of nitrogen, three lbs.
of elemental boron and 30 lbs. of prided
sulphur increased the total yield to 4.1
tons per acre as compared to 1.4 tons for
the untreated plot. Work of a simEar
nature was conducted with forage crops
and grains on more than 40 farms located
throughout the province. In addition, corn
variety trials were conducted on 20 farms.
Range specialists in the Interior were
again heavEy involved with coordinated
resource management planning. In the
Thompson-Okanagan region, a total of 19
plans were completed and at least six
additional plans started. In the Cariboo,
requests from range permittees for
coordinated plans under ARDSA funding
overcame the task group's ability to cope.
Range seeding with the new rangeland
dlsc-seeder-packer totalled over 3,000 acres
in 1978. In general, the seeding was
outetandingly successful. A site established
at Cache Creek in 1970 is an outstanding
example of the value of range seeding with
crested wheatgrass. In 1978, a seeded
section of this site which had been
fertilized with 100 pounds of nitrogen in
1977 yielded 2,487 pounds of dry matter as
compared to 124 pounds from the
unseeded, unfertilized native range.
Forage production on range can be increased dramatically
by seeding to domestic and more productive grass varieties. This
is an unseeded area.
using fertilizer.
ardy grass variety, without
This area was seeded to a hardy grass variety with an
application of fertilizer. Yields were 20 times that of the
unseeded area.
page forty-two
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Weed control activities were stepped up
in 1978. Assistance was extended to 16
regional districts and municipalities for a
variety of programs ranging from
complete enforcement of the Weed Control
Act to roadside weed control and specific
control of range weeds. Funds totalling
$235,000 were expected to be paid out in
grants for work completed during the year.
Other activities included about 60 trials on
control of weeds in crops and on
rangeland. Biological control projects also
received increased attention. The branch
cooperated with the B.C. Ministry of Forests
Range Division in the release of Urophora
parasitized knapweed heads throughout
the southern Interior at 69 sites.
The branch cooperated with Agriculture
Canada agencies on a number of potato
projects. AE seed potatoes produced in
1978 originated from virus-tested seed. The
estabEshment of the two seed potato
control areas of Cariboo and Pemberton
now seems fuEyjustifiable. Seed sales from
the 1977 crop were 7,870 tons of which
2,590 tons were exported. Seed from the
Golden Nematode resistant variety,
Hudson, was being produced in Pemberton
for the Saanich district.
Pedigreed forage seed production
remained at a relatively low level despite
efforts to distribute foundation seed of
Canadian varieties multipEed by the
Canadian Forage Seed project. Stronger
prices in 1978 for many varieties are
expected to stimulate production. Of
interest to Lower Mainland farmers was
the recent Ecensing of the double-cut red
clover variety "Pacific" as a result of a
five-year cooperative project involving
Delta farmers, U.B.C. and the Ministry of
agriculture. About 6,000 pounds of
foundation seed were produced to 1978.
The Horticulture Branch provides advice
to growers of horticultural crops in B.C. on
aE aspects of cultural management.
Branch staff assisted packinghouses in
developing an improved field service
throughout the Okanagan-SimEkameen
region, helping growers with sprayer
testing and caEbration, increasing the
accuracy of soE sampling, heightening
awareness of nutritional problems and
improving harvesting maturities. Testing
sites for tree fruit varieties and root stocks
were initiated. During 1978, a coordinated
approach to prevent orchard damage by
deer was initiated. Through extensive use
of radio broadcasts, newspaper and
magazine articles, grower meetings, field
days and events such as the television
"Chautauqua" seminar and horticultural
forums, messages of good horticultural
practices were extended to growers.
Tree Fruits
Apple markets for both fresh and
processed fruit continued to be strong.
Movement of the 1978 crop was good and
prices firm.
Sales of apples both through fruit stands
and to fruit "peddlers", reached an aE-time
high in 1978. Some orchardists, however,
questioned the seEing of their crop or a
portion of theE crop in this manner in
view of returns received for apples sold
through B.C. Tree Fruits Limited during
recent years.
Orchard renovation including new
plantings and new Erigation systems
continued during 1978. A world-wide
shortage of trees prevented an
acceleration of orchard renovation. The
lack of nursery stock in B.C. also severely
curtailed replanting plans.
The 1978 pear crop was 10.2 per cent
smaEer than the 1977 crop.
The pear psyEa problem was disastrous
to the 1978 crop. More effective pear-pest
pesticides are needed to control the insect.
The control of psyEa by other than
chemical means would be ideal, but does
not seem possible in the next few years.
Th 1978 peach crop was estimated at 32
milEon pounds compared to 30 mEEon
pounds in 1977. Of this total, 35 per cent
was deEvered to packinghouses and 65 per
cent sold directly from orchards and
Most apricots were sold to the processors
page forty-three
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
at good prices. Volume was reduced
because of brown rot and poor size.
Chemical thinning trials show promise
and may help this crop.
Total 1978 sweet cherry production was
14.4 miEion pounds. The average return to
the grower was 30$ per pound. There were
more damage claims from the
marketplace than during 1977.
Reduced U.S. cherry crops caused better
than expected B.C. prices.
A cherry study led to an experiment in
orchard packing. The purpose was to
compare and evaluate packing cherries in
the orchard as an economic means of
improving fruit quality. The concept of
orchard packing Is feasible and
economical, provided a good quality cherry
is on the tree.
A total of 193 trees were found infected
with Ettle cherry disease, most of them
concentrated in the Penticton-Naramata
region. New outbreaks in the Kelowna
area significantly widen the distribution of
this disease even though the spread Is slow.
WhEe sour cherry production has
remained steady, the price return to the
grower has increased dramaticaEy. This is
due to two years of crop failure in the
eastern United States where the majority
of sours are grown.
The 1978 prune crop was estimated at
nine million pounds compared to 6.6
miEion pounds in 1977. This represented a
substantial increase in total doEar value.
There was a record crop of over 18,400
tons of grapes produced in the Okanagan
and Similkameen Valleys in 1978.
Professional horticulturists work with growers on
management, variety selection, pest control and marketin.
page forty-four
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
derail crop quality was much better than
expected in the early fall.
Most varieties were harvested two to four
weeks later than last year. There are now
five mechanical harvesters working on the
frop, aE to the OEver area.
The branch monitored the commercial
grape crop for soluble soEds on a weekly
basis for five weeks until October 16. Trial
varieties were monitored untE harvest.
Experimental plantings produced much
needed data on vinEera selections and
bther potentially new varieties for British
LB.C. wineries that have been entering
ternational competitions have been
receiving high ratings and winning
awards. They anticipated record sales for
LThe first cottage winery was established
B.C. during 1978 by Marrion John near
The "Becker Project", involving a
selection of German grape varieties,
continued with planting trials in the
Okanagan area. Branch staff also
conducted cooperative variety trials with
grape growers. The resulting grapes were
tested by Agriculture Canada researchers
for wine-making potential.
Unsuitable weather made it a difficult
growing year for most vegetable crops.
Vegetable acreage did not Increase from
1977 levels.
Poor weather also caused marketing
difficulties particularly with lettuce and
cauliflower. Lettuce lacked continuity of
supply. In an effort to bolster market
acceptance of cauEflower, the branch
participated in trial ceEo wrapping. The
product was weE received by the trade.
Whole cole crops, tomato and pepper
seedlings have been imported for many
years, 1978 marked the first import of
celery seedlings.
Prices for celery were good throughout
the season, reflecting the advantages of
washing, grading and packing at the
seEing agency, rather than packing
without washing at the farm.
Onion volume and quality were normal
although White Rot disease continued to be
a problem.
With the assistance of an ARDSA grant,
one of the established processing plants
introduced five new pouch-pack Enes for
broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, peas
and white corn. This firm hopes to obtain
a local supply of 40 tons of white corn in
1979. It Is hoped that these lines wiE
suceessfuEy compete with and displace
some of the imported product.
Crop insurance was made avaEable to
pea growers for the first time in 1978. The
DATE project to find a selection of peas
resistant to a new wEt race, "Kam", was
suceessfuEy concluded in 1978. The
selection wiE be made available to the pea
seed industry and increased at growers'
and processors' demand.
The confidence of the Interior vegetable
Industry in theE marketing board was
under review in 1978. However, interest in
vegetable production increased during the
summer; asparagus growers were given
assistance through the formation of the
B.C. Asparagus Growers' Association. A
national asparagus crop survey which
included the Okanagan VaEey pinpointed
many serious problems in the industry.
During the summer, studies were
carried out in the Grand Forks area
concerning nematodes, soil fertility,
Erigation, harvesting and storage of
vegetables Including potatoes.
Berry Crops
Many strawberry fields came through
last winter to a weakened condition and
never fuEy recovered. The full crop
potential was not reached.
Raspberry prices and production were
very good in 1978. For the second
consecutive year, raspberries were
imported from the United States for
processing, only the second time since
1969. Fresh market shipments and
roadside sales declined due to high
processing prices.
The blueberry crop showed a high
potential early in the season but hot
weather reduced the yield. Sales were
strong and prices were firm.
The cranberry crop was good although
slightly lower in volume than last year's
record high. Price and demand remained
page forty-five
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Cranberries are harvested in the Lower Mainland with
this unique motorized unit.
Mushroom production in 1978 increased
by 18 per cent over 1977 levels. Sales of
B.C. grown fresh mushrooms were again
strong with aE fresh markets suppEed by
the local product. The average producer
price was about 65$ per pound. The
expansion of facilities which took place
over the past few years slowed down in
Nursery Crops
An objective of sales amounting to $20
miEion in the nursery industry by 1980
was achieved in 1978, two years early.
There was a strong demand for B.C. grown
nursery stock in eastern Canada. Exports
to Washington and Oregon also occurred.
The branch cooperated with Fraser
Valley CoEege, Douglas CoEege and the
B.C. Nursery Trades Association to theE
attempts to accommodate the interest in
nursery production. The branch nursery
specialist also assisted U.B.C. with
instruction in a plant science-nursery course.
A new B.C. Plant Protection Act became
law during 1978. The new Act provides
more authority in aaEninistering
regulations under the Act and provides for
an appeal by persons affected by the
The certification program for Pinus Spp.
continued to expand during 1978.
The first Balsam fir grown under the
new certification program were sold
during 1978.
A Pear TreEls Rust certification program
for junipers was accepted by Plant
Quarantine Division, Agriculture Canada
during 1978.
The first Nursery Production Guide was
printed in 1978 for use by growers. This
publication was based on many years of
research and field trials.
Container production of nursery stock
expanded more rapidly than traditional
field culture. Nutrition and weed control
are two major problems in container culture.
A 1977 survey set target ranges for
nutrients in conifers and broadleafed
evergreens. In 1978, a survey was
page forty-six
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
mdertaken to narrow the target ranges to
specific genera of the most common plants
grown and to determine optimum levels of
The production of nursery trees for the
tree fruit industry continued to increase
after a low period in the early 1970s.
Emphasis was on the production of
spur-type Red DeEcious. There is still a
shortage of stocks for planting. Good
returns over the past two years has
renewed interest in orchard renovations
and additional plantings.
Greenhouse Crops
The high cost of energy continued to
plague the producers of greenhouse crops.
Growers took steps to conserve fuel
wherever possible.
The greenhouse industry continued to
expand slowly despite energy problems.
The greatest expansion was in the flower
industry. The trend away from greenhouse
tomato production continued. Although the
market for tomatoes was strong, net
returns for tomatoes were not as high as
for other crops. Production of seasonal
crops such as poinsettias continued to
There was increased interest in specialty
crops such as freesias, alstroemeria,
gerberas and alternate vegetable crops
such as lettuce and Chinese melons.
Allotment Gardens
The aEotment garden program for
urban dweEers continued in 1978, with
about 1,500 plots located in the Victoria
and Vancouver areas. The turnover
continued to be greater than expected,
primarily among new plotholders.
The Livestock Branch is responsible for
the development of programs related to
the production of Evestock and Evestock
products. Programs have been devised to
assist producers to improve the quality of
theE Evestock and the efficiency of their
t Beef cattle prices increased substantially
urlng 1978 and by the end of the year
continued at satisfactory leveki. The B.C.
Livestock Marketing Cooperative reported
an average price per pound of 63$ or $413
per head on aE cattle sold. This compares
to $216 per head for 1977 and $176 for
1976. Cow sales were brisk, mostly to the
U.S. Ranchers who normally seEyearEngs
bought back less calves than in average
years. Interest rates tended to depress calf
prices in November.
The Beef Industry Study Committee,
organized in 1977 to examine ways and
means of increasing provincial
self-sufficiency in beef production,
continued actively during the year. The
principal objective was to agree upon and
finalize terms of reference for a study and
to appoint and assist a coordinator who
would be responsible for producing the
final report. The study, funded under the
AR.DA Agreement, should reach initial
draft form by February 28,1979. It is felt
by many that some of the preEminary
reports produced and released to date have
had a catalytic effect in the development
of backgrounding and finishing facilities.
One experienced group of cattlemen have
already had an AR.D.S A loan approved
for the development of such facEities to
the Kamloops region. The facEities wEl
offer custom services to cEents.
The reaction of the beef cattle industry
to the Range Act was one of caution. While
the Act contains provisions for longer
tenure, which the beef industry had
stressed for many years, there is concern
that the Act allows for unEateral decisions
by the Ministry of Forests which could
unfavourably affect the rancher. The
Ministry of Agriculture cooperated with the
Ministry of Forests in development of the
regulations pertaining to the Act. These
have only recently been proclaimed so that
it is too early to measure producer reaction
at time of writing.
The swine industry continued to expand
at a rate unprecedented in recent years,
with B.C. production nearing the 100,000
head mark by the year end. Weighted
average price for 100 index hogs at
Vancouver during the year was $67.51 per
Much of the optimism in hog production
was caused by the return of favourable
prices. However, other factors such as the
efforts of the B.C. swine breeders to
page forty-seven
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
promote and develop the industry,
existence of a price stabilization program,
and the re-entry of Intercontinental
Packers into the slaughtering and
industry promotion field had a marked
effect. The demand for breeding stock
exceeded supply with price for gilts to-
excess of $200. On the less optimistic side
however, there remains concern that
municipal zoning regulations may impede
the development of the industry in some
regions of the Fraser VaEey where
proximity to markets suggests an
expansion should occur. The Engineering,
Extension and Livestock Branches are
cooperating on plans and procedures
aimed at alleviating the problem.
The ARDSA funded Swine Industry Study
was delayed much beyond its scheduled
completion date of mid-year and is now set
for January 1979. It is hoped that this
study will provide some realistic guidelines
as to the future direction of the industry.
The Hog Quality Program administered
by the Livestock Branch indicated that in
1977,41 operations produced 82.7 per cent
of the provincial output of hogs. Early to
1979, the ministry wEl be able to compare
1978 production with that of the previous
year in order to accurately assess
Manpower resources made available to
the branch in 1978 allowed the
development of a long-awaited Swine
Record of Performance program. Six
producers were enroEed at the end of the
year, with at least 15 more expected to
sign up in 1979 when premises are ready.
A total of 134 boars and 844 gEts were
probed on private premises during the
year. One privateiy-owned boar test station,
the first in the province, was constructed
and began operation during the year. Due
to the efforts of the B.C. Swine Producers'
Association, the National Swine Record of
Performance Advisory Committee wiE hold
its 1979 annual meeting in British
Prices for good quaEty slaughter lambs
ranged from $65 to $80/ewt. live weight for
most of the year in the province. PubEc
sales of registered breeding stock showed
some decline in prices over the previous
year but prices of young cornmercial ewes
and ewe lambs rose sharply by late 1978.
The B.C. Sheep Breeders' Cooperative sold
about 2,400 head of sheep of all classes at
its Kamloops sale on October 14. Ewe
lambs ranged in price from 69$ to $ 1.38
per pound with an average price of 96$ on
lambs weighing 75 pounds per head for
some smaE lots. Approximately one-half
the sheep were sold to buyers in Alberta
and Ontario.
The Provincial Sheep Record of
Performance Advisory Committee began
an assessment of the need for central test
facilities for B.C. breeding stock. A highly
qualified cornmlttee wEl report on
alternatives and make recorrrmendations
by May 1979. The National Sheep Record
of Performance Committee has accepted
an invitation to hold its 1979 annual
meeting to Victoria.
A solution to the increasing problem of
predation by dogs and indigenous species
continued to be sought as a requirement
for development of the sheep industry in
British Columbia. Provincial and regional
committees worked actively on the
problem which is being made more
compEcated by highly reactionary
envEonmental groups.
The branch was represented at the
National Sheep R.O.P. Committee at Truro,
Nova Scotia and the National Beef R.O.P.
Advisory Committee at Brandon, Manitoba
during June and the Canadian Milk
Recording Board Workshop in September.
The goat industry was assisted by
personnel hired under the Accelerated
Agriculture Program during the year. The
project which commenced in June,
terminates on March 31,1979. It is hoped
that as a result of this assistance, the goat
industry wiE be in a more favourable
position to identify and justify its
developmental needs to government and
lending institutions. It is interesting to
note, many members feel that they must
have a type of official milk recording
scheme not presently avaEable. A Ealson
cornmlttee has been established to
promote better pubEc relations between
the ministry and the goat breeders.
The Dairy Herd Improvement program
indicated that herd size and production
continued upward, whole the number of
producers on the program dropped. Herd
size increased from 60.8 cows milking in
1977 to 61.4; production rose to 14,491
pounds of mEk and 523 pounds of
page forty-eight
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
tnder the Dairy Herd Improvement Program, inspectors
kke milk samples from commercial dairy operations to analyze
he milk for content quality.
utterfat from 14,253 pounds of mEk and
518 pounds of butterfat; but enroEment
dropped from 556 to 526. Reasons for
reduction in enroEees is due to herd
consoEdation, transfer to R.O.P. and in
some cases, dissatisfaction with service.
The division experienced dEficulties in
Implementing the Canadian Milk
Recording Board Standards. In addition,
the responsibElty for programming and
data processing was transferred to a new
administration. At the year's end, it was
believed that the new administration had
come to grips with the problems involved,
and that 1979 would see a renewed rate of
progress and development.
Preoccupation with utiEty Evestock
prevented the branch from devoting much
attention to the horse industry. The
provincial government, through the
Racing Commission, recognized the value
of an incentive to the racing industry by
[provision of a new grant of 0.5 per cent of
the total pari-mutuel handle to B.C.
breeders of competing thoroughbred and
standardbred horses. Formerly, assistance
was avaEable only to owners of such horses.
The Poultry Branch assists producers
with all aspects of poultry and egg
production. It provides advice on
government programs, new techniques
and research appEcable to poultry
The Poultry Branch staff consists of
specialists in all aspects of production and
diseases of poultry. The staff works closely
with commercial producers assisting with
current production problems and in
developing modern management practices.
They act as a liaison between producers
and marketing boards and industry
associations. They also organize and conduct
conferences and various short courses.
The branch office is located at the
Poultry Test Station to Abbotsford where a
modern poultry farm Is maintained. Staff
members utilize these facEities to
planning and conducting projects of an
applied research nature to find answers to
current industry problems.
Some of the projects completed include a
study on the practicability of housing
broEer breeders in cages and breeding by
means of artificial tosemination. On the
basis of this test, the cage system, so
popular to commercial egg production,
could not be justified for broEer breeders.
At the completion of this project, the
floor controls were altered to determine
the economics of molting breeder hens.
WhEe the procedure Is common with
leghorns, little information is avaEable for
heavy hens.
The shortage of hatching eggs during
1978 had pointed to the need for a more
flexible supply of hatching eggs. Projects
were also initiated to test the genetic
potential of various strains of egg-laying
and meat-producing chickens and turkeys.
Tests were carried out on rearing puEets in
cages as Ettle information is avaEable
regarding the effect of cage density on
laying house production.
Branch staff participated in several
cooperative projects with other agricultural
agencies. These included a study of
biological fly control in deep pit layer
barns by means of a parasitic wasp.
Another test determined the effect of oElng
on egg quality and shelf life.
These projects provide considerable
information to producers at Ettle cost to
government. The test station, in the period
December 1977 to December 1978,
returned $93,651 to provincial revenues
from the sale of poultry products (about
$23,000 in excess of normal operating
Waterfowl and game bEds continue to
attract considerable interest. At present
page forty-nine
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
there are three pheasant farms in B.C. with
a total annual production of 30,000 bEds.
However, commercial development is
restricted because of a lack of processing
Numerous inquEies are received
annually as to the feasibility of commercial
rabbit meat production. There is little
practical information avaEable on the
feeding, management and housing of this
animal. Mortality rates in commercial
rabbit houses have been high. A smaE
research unit was instaEed at the test
station in December 1978. Some
significant advances in rabbit husbandry
maybe forthcoming.
The poultry industry over the past few
years has developed a highly organized
marketing system initiaEy through the
provincial commodity boards, foEowed by
national marketing agencies. In 1978 aE
Canadian turkey and egg marketing came
under the control of national agencies
which related provincial production quotas
to market requirements. On December 29,
1978, the National Chicken Marketing
Agency was created to set production levels
and control over imports. The local board
retained the authority to set prices paid to
Market Situation
During 1978, aE sections of the poultry
industry remained financially stable. The
producer price was relatively steady even
though operating costs continued to rise.
The weighted price for all grades and sizes
of eggs was 69.5$ per dozen, an increase
of 0.5$ from the previous year but sEghtly
less than the 69.9$ in 1976. The
Eve-weight price for "regular" broEers for
the first 26 weeks remained unchanged at
37.5$ per pound F.O.B. farm. This price
increased by 0.5$ on July 1, and by a
further 0.5$ on July 24. The average
weighted price for "regulars" was 38.0$ per
pound and "juniors" 39.2$ per pound.
Turky prices paid to producers averaged
50.4$ per pound live weight. This represente>
a weighted increase of 2.4$ over 1977.
The number of laying birds to 1978 was
estimated to be 2.4 miEion, a decrease of
373,000 from 1977. The British Columbia
quota allotment for 1978 was 2,501,067
layers. Total egg production was 50 miEion
dozen or approximately one miEion dozen
per week.
Effective January 1,1978, the provincial
egg quota was reduced by 5.68 per cent;
producer quota aEotment was based on 67
layers per case of eggs (previously 72). On
February 1, the age at which a puEet was
classified as a layer was reduced to 20
weeks from 24. About 280,000 boxes (15
dozen each) of eggs were purchased under
the CEMA buy-back program and sold to
breaking plants or exported. Consumer
egg consumption increased by two per cent.
The turkey industry in British Columbia
strengthened. Storage stocks were lower
than the previous year. The Canadian
Turkey Marketing Agency (CTMA) set the
B.C. quota aEotment at 16.4 milEon
pounds, weE below the 1977 disappearance
figures. Since the need for an extra two to
three miEion pounds existed, the B.C.
board signified intention to withdraw.
Subsequent discussions resulted in a
larger provincial allocation over a two-year
period. British Columbia was aEotted 39.4
miEion pounds for the 1978-1979 period
Much of the B.C. poultry industry is centered in the Fraser Valley area. Many of the operations have large barns and housing facilities
capable of holding thousands of birds.
page fifty
 with a possible further 600,000 pound
breeder aEotment. Production over this
aEotment Is to be penalized at the rate of
10$ per pound.
Disappearance of chicken meat during
1978 was spectacular. Consumption rose
rapidly in May/June when beef prices
jumped by about 40 per cent. Broiler chick
placements across Canada recorded an
eight per cent increase with major
changes occurring in B.C., Alberta and
Manitoba. Saskatchewan and Quebec had
the smallest increases.
About 27.3 miEion broEer chicks were
placed on B.C. farms. This was an increase
of about five mEEon (22 per cent) over the
previous year, representing the biggest
annual increase in the history of the B.C.
broEer industry. This represented
marketing of 72.5 miEion pounds (100
miEion pounds Eve weight), an increase of
11.5 miEion pounds.
page fifty-one
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Agricultural and
The ARDA Branch is responsible for the
coordination and administration of two
major programs operating under joint
funding arrangements between the
province and the federal department of
regional economic expansion.
The Agriculture and Rural Development
Agreement (1975/77) (ARDA) expired July
31,1977. However, the termination date of
projects underway was December 31,1978
aEowing for approved works to be
constructed up to that date. Much of the
work of the ARDA Branch this past year
was, therefore, concerned with the
adrninistration and implementation to
completion of 45 approved ARDA projects
that were stiE active. This involved 1978
ARDA expenditures of approximately
$5 mElion.
Underground irrigation lines were Installed in the
Creston-Wynndel area to provide water for improved
agricultural production.
ARDSA officers discuss coordinated resource management
plans with ranchers using crown ranges.
page fifty-four
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
A new program, ARDSA (Agriculture
and Rural Development Subsidiary
\greement, 1977/82) signed to July 1977,
nlossomed into full activity during 1978. It
■esulted in many new projects, particularly
n the area of range improvement,
Drocessing of food products, rural
lectrificatlon, and research.
The new ARDSA program provides a
:,otal of $60 mEEon of federal and
provincial funds for the development of
Tie agriculture industry over a five-year
The agreement has four major program
area components:
- Part I    - Research, Planning, Training
and Market Promotion; to
identify and develop new
opportunities in agriculture
Part II   - Coordinated Resource
Management; to develop and
improve the grazing capacity of
Crown range and thereby support
and stabEize the beef industry in
harmony with forestry, recreation
and wEdEfe interests
• Part III - Primary Resource
Development; to Increase the
production capabEity of the
underdeveloped land resources
through new irrigation systems
and drainage works
- Park LV - Support Services and
Community Development; to
provide the support services
needed in rural areas to develop
secondary processing and
value-added stages.
The ARDA Branch is responsible for the
analysis and approval process and the
aoEministration and Implementation of
approved projects.
Since its inception in mid-1977, a total of
95 projects have been approved by the
federal-provincial ARDSA management
committee. These projects represent a total
capital investment of $ 18,797,888. The
ARDSA contribution (federal and
provincial) to these projects wiE be
$9,558,418 to be. shared equaEy by the B.C.
Ministry of Agriculture and the federal
Department of Regional Economic
Expansion. The remaining $8.3 mEEon wiE
come from local participants and private
industry who are the appEcants and
beneficiaries of the projects. The
proportion of local contribution varies with
the type of project.
luminary of ARDSA approved projects:
August 1,1977 to December 31,1978
No. of Projects
Total Cost
Part I       Research, Planning, Training and Market
$ 2,035,450
Part II      Co-ordinated Resource Management
(Range Improvement)
Part III    Primary Resource Development
;e and Irrigation)
$    511,600
$  383,700
Part IV    Support Services and Community Development
(processing, rural hydro, etc.)
page fifty-five
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Financial assistance Is avaEable to
eligible farm operators within the province
through Acts aadiuinistered by this branch.
These Acts identified as the Agricultural
Credit Act and the Agricultural Land
Development Act provide the foEowing
assistance to farmers:
(a) a provincial government guarantee to
chartered banks or credit unions as
supplemental support security on loans
to farmers
(b) a partial reimbursement of the interest
paid by farmers on loans from
approved lenders to effectively reduce
the cost of farm loans
(c) to provide incentives to farmers to
participate in special programs in
specified areas of B.C. These Incentives
to farmers may take the form of
additional reimbursement of interest
paid and/or reimbursement of loan
principal payments
(d) to provide direct loans to a maximum
of $ 15,000 for primary and secondary
land development
Guaranteed Loan Program
Since inception of the program in July
1974, the government approved 227 loan
guarantees to banks or credit unions.
Each loan guarantee was appEed as
security against a particular farm loan. In
1978, there were 26 loans guaranteed for a
total of $2,456,069. In 1978, two claims
totalling $52,382 were made by lenders
under the guarantee covenant.
Partial Interest
In 1978, farmers in British Columbia
received $4,385,301 representing partial
reimbursement of interest paid by them to
approved lenders during 1977. Interest
costs in 1977 were reimbursed to reduce
the effective interest rate to approximately
nine per cent on those loans not
guaranteed by the province and to
approximately 9 1/2 per cent where a
guarantee under the Agricultural Credit
Act was In place. There were 6,427
appEcatlons received from farmers who
had paid interest to approved lenders.
From the Inception of this program on
July 1,1974 to December31,1978, atotal
Eligible farmers receive partial reimbursement, of interest costs on farm loans obtained to improve the farm operation.
page fifty-six
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
pf $ 18,648,819 was distributed to farmers
o reduce interest costs.
3pecial Programs
Through this program, 71 farmers
received benefits amounting to $23,147 in
1978. These benefits consisted of
reimbursement of a portion of theE
Interest costs paid to 1977 on these special
Loans contracted for the purchase or
retention of Evestock. The reimbursement
reduced the effective interest rates on
such loans to four per cent for
non-guaranted loans and 4 1/2 per cent
for guaranteed loans.
This program is designed to encourage
Peace River grain farmers to diversify
iheE operations to include Evestock
thereby reducing risk and broadening
iheir income base.
In 1978, there were 551 contracts issued
x>r a total value of $3,713,192. This direct
.ow-toterest loan program assisted farmers
n financing the cost of primary and
Eiondary land development.
rop Insurance
The Crop Insurance Branch acEnlnisters
the B.C. Crop Insurance Act, plus related
regulations, and maintains the program in
accordance with a federal-provincial crop
insurance agreement. Six crop categories
are insurable under the Act at this time:
berries, forage, grain, grapes, tree fruits
and vegetables.
Farmers pay 50 per cent of the
premium, the federal government matches
the farmer's payment and the government
of British Columbia pays aE administration
30sts. On a comparative basis, for each
$ 1.00 paid by the province, the federal
ctovernment contributes about $3.00.
Damage was relatively rninor however, and
only a few claims resulted totalling $ 16,300.
Forage Program
Winter damage occurred in a few areas
of the Cariboo, resulting in several small
reseeding claims. OveraE, 1978 was a good
year for this program even though
drought in the Peace River resulted in a
few more claims. 1978 claims wiE total
Grain Program
Prolonged drought adversely affected
development and yields of crops. Rains
came at harvest time, causing many
barley and oat crops in swath to sprout. In
spite of these setbacks, a late improvement
in the weather and a determined effort by
farmers enabled most of the crop to be
salvaged. Claims are expected to total
$600,000 for 1978, leaving surplus
premiums for the fifth consecutive season.
Economic conditions and low grain
prices are felt to be the main contributing
factors in the decline in farmer
participation in recent years. Rapeseed
acreage is the only crop not foEowing this
trend however, as the acres insured
doubled to 1978 to a high of 58,300. This is
felt to be a reflection of the firm price for
rapeseed and tight cash flow for other
grain crops.
Grape Program
erry Program
Spring frosts at flowering time affected
he strawberry and blueberry crops.
In spite of bunch rot appearing in a few
varieties, 1978 was a claim-free year for
Tree Fruit Program
Claims wEl probably reach $1.2 mEEon
when the final 1978 todemnities have
been paid, bringing the past two-year total
close to $3 million. Fruit set faEure, cherry
rarn-spEt and haE have been the main
factors contributing to substantial losses.
Tree fruit farmers continued to
demonstrate strong support of the
program with a 20 per cent increase in
participation since 1977.
The main area of concern was the
increasing volume of fruit sold off the
page fifty-seven
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
J.C.'s grain farmers insured their grain crops under the Crop Insurance Program to avoid income losses due to hazardous weather.
page fifty-eight
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
arm. DEect sales made it very difficult to
letermlne the actual level of production,
tesearch is underway by staff members to
levelop some means of control for the
.979 crop year.
Vegetable Program
This program was established in 1977 to
response to a request for coverage of green
beans. Peas, which are grown for processing,
were added in 1978.
Drought and hot weather caused a few
losses totaEing $3,200.
Growers requested that potatoes,
cabbages, carrots, onions and turnips be
added to the Est of insurable crops. A
proposal resulting from an in-depth study
by branch research staff was forwarded to
the federal crop insurance branch for
Status of Crop Insurance Fund at March 31,1978
March 31,1978 (cr)
March 31,1977 (cr)
Current Account Balance
$   546,419.00
$   281,650.00
Undistributed reserve
Due from Government of Canada
Grain Program
Tree Fruit Program
Berry Program
Grape Program
Forage Program
Vegetable Program
Crop Insurance Fund Deficit
$           0
$   700,000.00
Add: Advances from Stabilization Fund
$           0
$          0
Farmer Participation
Tree Fruits
Not due at this time
page fifty-nine
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
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™:&*r;:v,'.:-.■.- -t'-V. -^ • r'>:- • '"-■*'■'     --;;; ^^^^^v^AW^#v; '■'
-  ■' f&Sti -
it.-<iivW. -'jfeii
Farm income assurance benefits continued to be available to sheep producers in protecting them against income loss due to drastic
market fluctuations.
Farm Income
The branch administers income
assurance programs which protect
producers against income loss due to
drastic market fluctuations. Programs
were first developed in 1973 for five-year
As a result, six programs terminated
once claims were completed on the 1978
crop. The remainder will expEe upon
claim settlement of either the 1979 or
1980 crops.
The foEowing is a summary of program
status as at December 31,1978.
1. Tree Fruits
- terminated when claims for the 1977 crop were settled in 197E
2. Swine
3. Field Tomato
4. Greenhouse Vegetables
5. Beef
6. Broiler Hatching Eggs
■ terminate foEowing settlement of claims for 1978 crop year
7. Dairy
■ terminate on settiement of claims to Feb. 28/79
8. Blueberries
9. Potatoes
■ terminate foEowing settlement of claims for 1979 crop year
10. Commercial Eggs
11. Sheep
■ terminate on settlement of claims to March 31/80
12. Raspberries
■ terminate on settlement of claims for 1980 crop
page sixty
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
Total cost to government of aE programs
nthe 1978 calendar year was $11,831,141
'or a total of $ 107,706,370 since the
nception of the farm income assurance
During the year, ministry staff studied a
"eport entitled "A Review of Farm Income
stabilization by Dr. S.C. Hudson" who was
3ommissioned to review present farm
ncome assurance programs and the need
br a long term poEcy. The report
recommended that an amended farm
ncome assurance program be established
,o complement the federal agricultural
stabEization program using the 100 per
pent guaranteed margin approach. The
report also recommended that commodltes
with full supply-management systems not
be eEglble for farm income assurance.
In 1978, a Memorandum of
Jnderstandlng was agreed upon between
he Ministry of Agriculture and the British
lolumbia Federation of Agriculture which
jet out poEcies for new farm Income
Lssurance plans. At year end, new plans
for tree fruits, six fresh vegetable and
three processing vegetable commodities
were in late stages of development.
Technical conrmlttees of the federal and
provincial agricultural ministries
continued to work towards harmonizing
federal and provincial income stabElzation
Improved market returns in 1978
markedly reduced producer todemnity
payments and left several commodity
plans in a surplus situation. The surpluses
were used to reduce the premiums and
thus bring the particular program account
to a balanced figure. In other cases,
surpluses wEl be carried forward to a new
program where appEcable.
During 1978, payments under the
federal Agricultural Stabilization Act were
made to B.C. producers on theE 1977 crops
of apricots, cherries and beef calves. Potato
producers also received a delayed payment
under this Act on part of theE 1976 potato
crop. The federal payments had the effect
of reducing B.C. farm income assurance
payments to producers since the federal
payments were deemed to be additional
market return.
Farm Products
The branch is responsible for the
aodninistration and Implementation of a
financial assistance program to the
agricultural processing sector in British
Top Shelf Feeds in Duncan is one of many agricultural firms
assisted under the Farm Products Finance Program.
page sixty-one
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
At year end, approximately $ 16.4 miEion
was being aodninlstered to 14 companies
in the form of loans, guarantees and share
holdings. The Farm Products Industry
Improvement Fund continued to be used
for incentive and interest reimbursement
grants. Financial analysis services also
continued to be provided to the ARDSA
Branch on value-added projects requesting
forgivable loans under Part IV of the
Agriculture and Rural Development
Subsidiary Agreement (ARDSA).
The branch was involved with
approximately 50 agricultural processing
or related organizations in the
consideration of requests for financial
assistance. These requests ranged from
financial aid to organizations in serious
financial difficulty to grants for
modernizing existing processing facEities.
A total of 79 ARDSA proposals were
forwarded to the branch for financial
analysis. By year end, analysis had been
completed for 37 requests while a further
31 were still under review. Eleven
proposals were withdrawn or disqualified
for technical reasons.
The sale of the assets of Panco Poultry
was essentially completed during the year.
A special program to assist potato growers
left with surplus potatoes as a result of a
sudden plant closure was completed and
approximately $320,000 provided to
individual growers.
The South Peace Dehy-Products Limited
alfalfa plant continued operations under a
receiver and a $500,000 guarantee was
provided on a loan by the B.C.
Development Corporation.
The remaining funds of $225,000 made
avaEable in 1977 to the Interior Vegetable
Marketing Agency were released upon the
completion of a financial review by a firm
of management consultants.
A sale of the equipment assets of I.O.K.
Poultry Limited was suceessfuEy
completed. The equipment wEl be installed
in a new poultry processing plant under
construction in Armstrong.
Near year end, joint discussions were
held with officials of the Department of
Regional Economic Expansion (DREE) and
Creston VaEey Foods Limited. This resulted
in the receipt by the company of grant
funds previously approved for Swan VaEey
Foods under the Regional Development
page sixty-two
Incentives Program (RDIA).
Funds continued to be suppEed on a
shared basis under the federal
Agricultural Products Markets
Development program (AGMAP) to the B.C.
Raspberry Growers' Association,
Association of B.C. Grape Growers and the
B.C. Coast Vegetable Marketing Board. The
funds were used to develop new markets.
The branch participated in the Becker
program to cooperation with the
Association of B.C. Grape Growers under
the federal New Crop Development Fund.
The program concerns the introduction to
the Okanagan of West German grape
The Farm Products Industry
Improvement Act was amended in 1978 to
enable funds to be made available to
eligible agricultural organizations engaged
in research on food or agricultural
products. When financial, engineering or
technical advice is necessary to examine a
proposal or to review assistance already
provided, such services maybe financed
under the fund.
The adrnlnistratlon section of the
branch was moved to 20316 - 56th
Avenue, Langley to March 1978. The field
office, previously located in Kamloops, was
discontinued in November and aE branch
activities are now directed from the
Langley location.
On behalf of the government, the
branch manages all farms and
agricultural properties administered by the
Agricultural Land Commission.
The leasing program involved a total of
114 properties comprising 22 Greenbelt, 46
Land Commission and 46 Ministry of
Highway parcels. Negotiations carried out
with the Ministry of Highways in 1978 will
add another 16 parcels to the portfoEo.
With other selected parcete, this wEl
provide more Eberal lease terms
approaching conditions now present in the
Greenbelt and Land Commission leases,
including options to purchase.
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
During the year, the Jan-Mar Property
ras deleted by transfer to the B.C. Forest
Service for use as a tree seed production
mit. Additions by transfer were the
laynes Point Orchard from the Parks
3ranch and the Minnekhada Farm from
tie Lands Branch.
As requested by the B.C. Assessment
Authority, the land and improvement
axes were paid directly by the tenants for
the first time.
Special project property programs made
satisfactory progress. Included in this
?roup are the Langley Farms complex; the
Archdale-Forbes and Callahan Properties
.eased to the City of Vernon to provide a
.and base for the sewage effluent spray
rrigation project; the Pearce Ranch leased
,o the Corrections Branch, Ministry of the
Attorney-General, used as the location for
lie Juvenile Rehabilitation Program in the
A/est Kootenays; and the
Eayes-Chrlstison-Shaw property at
Armstrong which includes the
levelopment of an Ecological Reserve with
jhe balance of the property leased to a
private tenant.
The farm operation programs at the
3ast Kootenay Ranches, Colony Farm and
FranquEle Farm, were enhanced by the
TEEng of staff vacancies through the
Vlinistry of Labour and Accelerated
Agriculture Program.
A full-time ranch manager was
appointed to supervise the operations of
;he East Kootenay Ranches.
The Land Commission gave direction for
changes made to the Advisory Committee
associated with the use of these ranches
as community pastures. This will increase
the input from the private sector. A
program, similar to the one now operating
at the Pearce Ranch will commence in
1979 at the Lost Creek Ranch involving
the Corrections Branch and the East
Kootenay ChEd Care Society.
The Psychiatric Forensic Institute has a
high regard for the contribution made to
its rehabEitation program by the
involvement of Institute residents in daEy
work schedules at Colony Farm. This was
indicated by the consistent level of
participation throughout the year.
The development of the Marathon Realty
property which Ees immediately west of
Colony Farm Included the installation of a
new ground-water pumping system.
Participation by B.C.B.C. to the
development of this new facility wiE ensure
improved drainage on that portion of the
farm which Ees to the west of the
Coquitlam River.
Numerous discussions took place during
the past year with officials of B.C.B.C. and
the Ministry of Highways concerning the
passage of the new Mary-HEl by-pass road
through Colony Farm. It was indicated that
the road will foEow the existing Fraser
River dyke alignment, resulting in
minimal damage to farmland.
The operation of the B.C. Beef Cattle Test
Station at TranquiEe continued at capacity
i new dairy complex was being built on one of the Langley area properties administered by the branch
page sixty-three
 Ministry of Agriculture — 1978 Annual Report
level of 120 buEs per year. The change to for projects approved by the Management
the Inclusion of corn sEage in the test Cornmittee. These projects included a
ration was regarded as an improvement. management study of rangelands used
A formal agreement was made aEowing exclusively by TranquEle Farm and a
cooperative use of TranquEle Farm by the swine nutrition research project.
University of B.C. and Agriculture Canada
page sixty-four


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