If you are involved in agriculture and are interested in learning about agricultural management practices as well as collaborating with fellow farmers, we invite you to join your local Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association.
Benefits of an OSCIA membership are many, not the least of which is to have the opportunity to contribute as a leader at the local, regional or provincial level as part of the Board of Directors.
The Association is represented by more than 50 local county and district branches, within 11 regions across the province and is a significant presence in all the major agricultural areas of Ontario. Field days, crop tours and local workshops are organized locally to introduce new methods of crop and soil management. Farmers, working with farmers has been the motto of OSCIA for decades. Our diverse membership has a significant presence in all agricultural areas of the province and across all major sectors.
Guest speakers, twilight tours, demonstration projects, bus tours and annual meetings provide excellent networking opportunities to share progressive ideas with other farmers in your area. During the pandemic OSCIA quickly pivoted to virtual meetings, conferences, and events, in order to continue offering peer-to-peer learning opportunities. This experience has expanded the organizations range of peer-to-peer learning opportunities to both online and in-person, offering a broad range of opportunities for our fellow members.
In addition to workshops supported through specific programs (e.g. EFP), OSCIA delivers clinics and outdoor classrooms for learning. The large events held in 2019 in Elgin and Dundas Counties are excellent examples that demonstrated the causes of compaction and what can be done in equipment and tire design to control it. The field day at Huronview demonstration farm in 2019 is another terrific example that showcased innovative tile drainage systems.
Grant funding is available exclusively to local and regional associations to support membership engagement activities and in-field applied research projects. The Regional Communication grant helps support regional communication coordinator activities, and the Tier One grants assist with peer learning opportunities.
Farmer-driven, applied research trials offer independent evaluation of new technology and management techniques that can improve productivity and profitability. These trials are delivered with expert guidance from OMAFRA and supported by members and agribusiness.
Sharing technologies and innovative research findings to members and the broader farm community through The Innovator quarterly newsletter, OSCIA website, Grassroots Matters, videos, Crop Advances, and presentations at events such as Ontario Agriculture Conference and Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show give farmers the tools needed to effectively seek-test-adopt best management practices.
Members enjoy discounted rates for farm show events/conferences and can receive discounts on soil testing through participating labs.
The provincial organization provides coverage to all local and regional associations for commercial general liability and director & officer insurance, and can provide the legal backing to allow local and regional associations to apply for outside funding to support special projects (e.g. Greenbelt Foundation support to Golden Horseshoe Region SCIA, SNAPP support to Parry Sound-East Nipissing SCIA, and East Algoma Community Futures Development Corporation support for Agricultural lime project by Algoma SCIA).
Local and regional associations rely on volunteers. With additional resources provided from the provincial organization, OSCIA offers the chance for individuals to develop and exercise leadership skills that offer the opportunity for valuable community service.
OSCIA appoints representatives to participate on relevant research and standing committees in Ontario agriculture, providing a meaningful opportunity to influence investigations and policy on soil, water, air and crop issues.
While this highlights the province-wide benefits of being an OSCIA member, there may be additional benefits unique to your area. Click Here to stay in touch with your local association to find out more about what is happening in your county or district.
The Innovator – News from the Grassroots
“The Innovator – News from the Grassroots” is OSCIA’s quarterly e-newsletter, released on the 20th of March, June, September, and November each year via email to all OSCIA members. You can receive a hardcopy, upon request to your local secretary or Regional Communication Coordinator (RCC) should you not have an email address. Click here to access the local and regional contact information. The Innovator is a collaborative project between the OSCIA office News Team, and your RCCs on a rotating basis. As well, most of the articles are written by or collaborated with your RCCs. As an active member of OSCIA, you can access the current and previous three issues of The Innovator on your member dashboard.
Click Here to access your membership profile.
“Grassroots Matters” is our bi-weekly e-blast containing relevant Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association news, and other relevant information from within the agricultural industry. As a member of OSCIA this email will come to your inbox bi-weekly on Thursdays. This is one of your many membership benefits when you sign up for a membership with your local SCIA. Sign up today to start receiving your latest OSCIA and industry news!
Learn more about OSCIA events across the province that bring people together to demonstrate new technologies, share knowledge on innovations and management strategies.
Explore training materials, association resources, and mental health initiatives.
Check out our YouTube channel for even more great OSCIA content!
Explore the complimentary workshop and webinar opportunities OSCIA facilitates for producers across the province.
Explore cost-share funding opportunities offered through OSCIA.
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