Julie Maw to represent Lambton County with Grain Farmers of Ontario

“It is an honoured to be elected and be that voice for farmers,” said Julie Maw, who is now the District 3 Director representing Lambton County for the Grain Farmers of Ontario.

Farmers are facing many issues which are out of their control, said Maw, including inflation, tariffs and the sustainability of farming. Young farmers have difficulty getting into farming in the first place, not only with the size an operation must be, often a another income is needed to deal with rising costs for land and equipment. She feels it is also important to educate people on where their food comes from.

Maw served the Grain Farmers of Ontario for the last five years as treasurer and has also served on the organization’s research and innovation committee. She farms with her husband and three boys on their farm just outside of Brigden. They have a no till operation where they harvest wheat, corn and soybeans, while also doing custom farming.

“I am not going to be the one who stands in her way,” said Emery Huzska, as he congratulated his successor. A District 3 meeting was held at the Wyoming Fairgrounds on Jan. 19, where the new director was chosen. “She is eager to go and I am sure she will do great things,” said Huszka.

Huszka, who has a cash crop operation in Dawn-Euphemia has served as District 3 director since 2019 said the biggest problem facing farmers today, is politics with the second being the weather. Politicians are often from an urban setting, and a lot of time goes into educating them on farm issues, he said. Once they get up to speed, the people change.

He has always supported young farmers to getting involved in farm politics. Rising land costs have been a barrier for many to enter the agricultural industry. “You often have to win the lottery or inherit it,” said Huszka. People who are buying farmland and flipping it for a profit often drive the rising land prices.

Huszka will continue to be involved with the Grain Farmers of Ontario, as he will continue to be a delegate.

Blake Ellis, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Independent