Agropur is owned by its members: over 3,161 dairy farmers who have decided to join forces in order to take control of their own future and process the products of their labours. At Agropur, every member gets one vote, regardless of the size of his or her farm.
Agropur: A world-class business that operates on democratic principles
Meet our owners
Agropur’s 3,161 dairy farmer members are spread across five Canadian provinces. They are the owners of Agropur, under a business model inspired by the values of cooperation. This mode of operation, which requires a great deal of discipline, has enabled the organization to develop to its full economic potential and to help build a better world.
Contributing to Agropur’s success
Agropur’s members contribute actively to its development by exchanging ideas regularly with its board of directors and its management team at over 80 local meetings per year.
These meetings keep the members informed and give them a chance to be consulted, to express themselves, and to understand the issues facing their Cooperative. This way of doing things has been the basis for Agropur’s success ever since it was founded and is what gives the Cooperative its great strategic strength and cohesiveness. This is all the more important in a worldwide industry that is undergoing profound change, as are its customers and consumers.
Electing the board of directors
The members make and support the required decisions at the Cooperative’s annual general meeting, through a democratic process in which each member has one vote, regardless of the size of his or her farm.
The members elect delegates at regional meetings. At the annual general meeting, these delegates in turn elect the 12 individuals who will serve on the board of directors. To obtain complementary expertise and other points of view, the board also invites individuals to serve as guest members. There are three guest members on the current board.
Growing without losing touch
The role of the Solidarity Committee is to supervise and coordinate associational life, member services and member training. This committee is supported by a network of over 700 facilitators across the country. The facilitators not only provide members with information but also gather their opinions and comments. This distinctive structure keeps two-way lines of communication open between the Cooperative’s members and its managers. All these cooperative activities enable the organization and its members to grow without losing touch.
Agropur Member Relations is a professional team that offers the Cooperative’s members extensive expertise on various aspects of animal welfare and milk production, such as milking operations, bacterial loads and milk-storage practices. This team also provides various kinds of training for Agropur members.
Celebrating and encouraging excellence
Every year since 1988, Agropur’s Milk Quality Club of Excellence has recognized members who have qualified as Milk Quality Champions in their respective regions.
Young leaders who are ready to change the world
The young people who will be the dairy farmers and Agropur members of tomorrow receive very special attention from the Cooperative through several initiatives designed especially for them, including our Young Cooperative Leaders Program, Young Facilitators Network, and study tours.
Designed for people under age 35, the Young Cooperative Leaders Program takes one year to complete and includes activities such as visits to dairy processing plants and meetings with members of cooperatives in other industries. Its purpose is to integrate these young people into Agropur’s associational life. Lastly, the Young Facilitators Network has 120 members, the sons and daughters of current Agropur members who may eventually take over the family farm.