By John Greig OrganicBIZ.ca.
One of the biggest challenges for organic crop farmers is to find solid agronomic information and markets that are reliable.
Larger conventional farm retailers have only made cautious steps into the organic market.
Thompsons Limited, however, has been putting more resources and focus on organic crops since July. The Ontario-based crop supply and marketing company has seen potential in the organic market, which makes some sense as it has a long history in marketing specialty crops.
The company hired Rob Wallbridge, a well-known organic consultant and former certifier to lead its greater push into organics. He’s also a Certified Crop Advisor.
“Thompsons has been in the organic grain markets for a number of years,” he says, including sourcing organic soybeans as part of its identity preserved and non-GMO soybean purchasing. “They found a growing demand for other organic crops.”
Thompsons is now buying organic corn, wheat, soybeans and some rye.
In the past Thompsons would have bought organic soybeans from a farmer, but the farmer would have had to find markets for his or her other crops. A more diverse crop rotation is necessary for organic production, and finding reliable markets for all of their organic production has proved challenging and a barrier for some farmers.
He’s very very knowledgeable. He’s farmed, he’s done the whole gammit. – Steve Hartman, organic crops and milk seller
Steve Hartman sells crops and milk organically, including some soybeans in the past to Thompsons in Granton. He says the hiring of Wallbridge shows that Thompson is serious about organics. Read more
Blenheim, Ontario, Canada – July 14, 2016
Thompsons Limited is pleased to announce that Rob Wallbridge has joined the company as Organic Specialist.
Rob grew up on conventional dairy and cash crop farms in Central and Eastern Ontario. He comes to Thompsons with more than 15 years of experience in organic crop certification, production and marketing.
Rob is a registered Certified Crop Advisor (CCA-ON) and is a board member with the Organic Council of Ontario. He is also a volunteer member of both the AAFC Organic Value Chain Roundtable and the Livestock Working Group of the Canadian General Standard Boards’ Organic Technical Committee.
This appointment will help solidify and build Thompsons profile as a major international player in the organics supply chain.
About Thompsons Limited
Established in 1924, Thompsons was purchased by The Andersons, Inc., and Lansing Trade Group, LLC in 2013. Thompsons is an integrated supplier of value-added agricultural products and services to growers in Ontario, Minnesota and North Dakota and to food processing customers worldwide. Thompsons owns and operates 12 elevators, 11 retail farm centers, 2 seed processing plants, 5 bean processing plants, a wheat processing plant, and 9 certified organic facilities. For more information, visit Thompsons Limited online at andersonscanada.com.
Dawn Betancourt, President, Thompsons Limited
Phone: (519) 676-5411