Minister: David Beaudin

Promoted to Minister of Agriculture in early 2021, David Beaudin is actively engaged in tackling the issues that confront today's Red River Métis farmers and ranchers. Minister Beaudin looks forward to working with all of our farmers and ranchers to help overcome significant and cumulative agricultural challenges, while pursuing new solutions and programs that enhance the long-term self-sufficiency and sustainability of our farmers and ranchers. Ensuring the Manitoba Métis Federation receives continuous long-term funding to support Red River Métis agricultural and agri-food businesses is one of the top priorities for 2022.

Agricultural Crown Lands

Red River Métis farmers and ranchers have a long history of utilizing crown lands to support their families and local communities. Farming and ranching represent both a modern livelihood and a traditional economic foundation of the Red River Métis, and is currently under significant stress.

Recent amendments to the Agricultural Crown Lands Leases and Permits Regulation, and the Crown Lands Dispositions Act, have resulted in severe hardship for numerous Métis Crown Lands Lease holders.

As a result,

  • The MMF have been connecting with our Métis farmers and ranchers to better understand the impacts associated with the amendments to the Crown land leasing program.
  • The MMF have been offering interim financial support through the MMF COVID-19 Business Support Program.
  • The MMF has committed legal support to defend our Métis farmers and ranchers adversely affected, including some people whose entire business viability is under threat from these amendments.
  • The MMF has hired a full-time Agriculture Coordinator to dedicate efforts to the Agriculture Portfolio.

Bison

In May 2020, the MMF's Energy, Infrastructure and Resource Management staff worked with Iron Head Bison Ranch to relocate the MMF bison herd from Rosa, MB to Iron Head Bison Ranch in Richer, MB. The MMF bison herd currently consists of cows (female bison) and calves (young bison). The herd was weighed, tagged, vaccinated, and provided with all necessary care to ensure a healthy transition to their new home.

In continuity with December 2020, in December 2021 the MMF butchered two of our bison bulls, producing approximately 1,000-lbs of meat. This meat was inspected, certified, and distributed to our Métis Elders throughout the MMF Regions. Considering the amount of interest we received in this initiative, your Métis government is prioritizing the distribution of more culturally appropriate food.

We will continue to maintain the bison herd so that we may continue to harvest the animals for food, as well as cultural and educational purposes. Opportunities to utilize the herd for educational purposes and economic opportunities are being explored. The MMF will continue working with our partners to support our bison, as the herd serves as a valuable teaching tool for our Youth and helps sustain a resource relied on by our Ancestors.

MMF COVID-19 Business Support Program

The MMF Covid-19 Business Support Program continues to provide a non-repayable financial contribution (grant) up to $10,000 to strengthen operations and increase business viability during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the goal of positioning businesses for recovery.

The program has supported many Métis Businesses including farmers and ranchers' businesses during these difficult times. If your business has previously benefited from the program more than 90 days ago and continues to be affected, please contact info@lrcc.mb.ca to see if you may qualify for additional support.

Note: this program is currently open until March 31, 2022.

For questions concerning the Agriculture Portfolio please contact Dustin Hoft, Agriculture Coordinator, by phone at (431) 373-4398, or by email at dustin.hoft@mmf.mb.ca

B300-150 Henry Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3B 0J7

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MMF Annual General Assembly 2022
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