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Bright Ideas

December brings the shortest days and darkest nights of the year. Hunkering down for the end of the year, we have a chance to reflect on everything we’ve seen over the past 12 months and think about what we might do differently in the months to come.

South of the border, many are predicting dark times, indeed. A storm erupted over the election of Donald Trump last month, even if Hillary Clinton didn’t inspire voters. Trump’s repugnant views and inward-looking policies have the world wondering what’s to come. (Chances are the incoming president won’t cop a line from our own prime minister and say the White House has taken certain actions “because it’s 2017.”)

There’s always uncertainty around the future, and the latest round of changes is no different.

However, we can give thanks that there’s a lot going right here in BC. Our food is safe and, for all our shortcomings, we’re doing a respectable job of protecting our livestock from diseases such as avian influenza. We’ve earned enough respect that we won access to new export markets for our greenhouse peppers this year, and blueberries enjoyed their first full season of access to China.

Getting things right at home has been a sure way to open doors abroad.

It doesn’t really matter how other countries approach the world, our farmers have embraced the protocols needed to make sure the world feels it can count on us. We’re ready to serve our best, and invite the world to enjoy what we’ve got to offer.

A founding myth of the US was the idea of it being a city on a hill; a beacon to others. Some fear the light is growing dim. Canada, by contrast, has often seen itself as an outpost, a place where the candle burns bright for travellers.

Nowhere did the candle burn more brightly last month than at the BC Agrifood and Seafood Conference in Kelowna. The conference was a welcome meeting of the minds as about 300 agriculture, industry and government representatives met to network and start to address the challenges of feeding not only our own population but our trading partners, too.

As this year draws to a close and a new year filled with promise and potential beckons us, let’s come together to build on our accomplishments, keep the candle burning, and create a feast on the table for the world.

Vol.102 Issue 12

CLBC Dec16 1.pdf