GUELPH — Ontario’s largest farm organization recorded almost $10 million in gross revenues for its 2016-2017 year but its expenses were also high.
The Ontario Federation of Agriculture, a not-for-profit farm organization with more than 37,000-member families, reported revenue of $9.76 million for the year ending Aug. 31, 2017. After expenses, the OFA reported a $787,840 surplus or profit.
Financially, it was another stellar year, exceeding last year’s $9.25 million in gross revenue and surplus of $651,348 after expenses. This is a remarkable turnaround from three years ago when the OFA recorded a loss of $7,895. As a non-profit, the OFA does not pay income tax.
The OFA’s 10 biggest expenses were:
1. Field services: $1.64 million
2. Finance and administration: $1.344 million
3. County funding: $1.137 million
4. Research and policy: $802,368
5. Overhead: $679,949
6. Communications: $414,653
7. Board of directors: $358,008 (on average $19,889 for each board member)
8. Executive members: $313,275
9. Canadian Federation of Agriculture dues: $304,109
10. Convention: $288,245
The OFA has 40 full-time and part-time staff, down from 42 full- and part-time staff last year and up from 36 two years ago.
The OFA also has $3.5 million in investments, much of it in major banks. The federation also recorded owning $496,931 in Bell Canada bonds and $295,169 in shares of Alimentation Couche-Tard, one of the largest convenience-store operators in the world, with 12,000 stores (including Mac’s, On the Run and Dairy Mart) and its head office in Montreal. The federation also recorded owning $5,062 in shares in Loblaws and $6,000 in debentures with Gay Lea Foods Co-operative.
In the same year, the OFA also earned $22,792 from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food and Rural Affairs in project management revenue.