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County dairy producers present a ‘bo-fine’ gift to Back the Build of PECMH

Prince Edward County Dairy Farmers put out a “moo-ving” plea for community support – of the dairy industry and a new hospital – when they presented $18,000 (and counting) donation to ‘Back the Build’ Friday morning.

A group of County dairy farm families brightened a hospital meeting at Huff Estates Inn Friday morning bringing out Talina the dairy cow, from Prinsville Dairy Farms, for the donation presentation to the Prince Edward County Memorial Hospital Foundation’s campaign.

“This a donation from all the dairy producers in Prince Edward County,” said Phil Prinzen, of Prinzhaven Farms. “Hospitals are an important part of our community and after all the negotiations and trade deals and everything that we as dairy farmers have been through – that still aren’t finished – it was just a small thing we could do to give back to thank the community, to thank the board and to thank everybody in support of buying Canadian dairy products.”

Prinzen noted the presentation was scheduled for a school professional activity dad to include the children who he hopes will be next-generation farmers.

“Lord-willing none of us will need that hospital in an emergency situation, but we all do work in hazardous jobs. We all have kids with futures coming into the industry and if that hospital’s not there, dairy farmers aren’t going to be here; the community is not going to be here,” he said, thanking his wife, Selena, “for jumping on board with my crazy idea” and thanking every producer who supported the effort.

“2018 hasn’t been a great year for a lot of farmers… We’re into three bad years and we keep saying the next year will be better, but I guess that’s farming,” he told the crowd. “At a time where we always want to do more, everybody gets stretched to the limit of what they can do, but every farmer has taken a little bit out of their pocket to support this hospital – right from one end of the county to the other – it’s incredible.”

“As an industry, dairy farmers have a responsibility to our community and this is one way we can all contribute and give back in a big way,” he said, adding a request to all to keep buying Canadian dairy products.

“You keep supporting us and we’ll do our best to support you. On behalf of the dairy producers, here’s $18,000 toward the build and let’s get this hospital rolling for the community.”

“The Dairy Producers’ gift to Back the Build is udderly fantastic,” said Shannon Coull, executive director of the PECMH Foundation. “One of our board members said earlier today ‘you’re part of the DNA of our County and it’s so amazing to be in partnership with you. We can’t do it without you… Today reminds us you’re the reason we’re so proud we live in this community and we’re all so lucky.”

The donation comes on the same morning as the official signing of the new NAFTA deal with Canada, Mexico and the United States. It could force Canada’s self-sufficient dairy market to allow 3.59 per cent US competition, but it is still not clear what the final impact will be on Canadian dairy farmers.

Prices paid to farmers are based on cost of production and prices in stores are set by the retailers. The US encourages a bounty of dairy (note several butter sculpting competitions) but in negotiations, the US president blamed Canada for refusing to help absorb America’s surplus.

Lawmakers in Canada, Mexico and the United States must still ratify the deal and passage could face issues as a new Mexican president takes over Saturday and the US doesn’t expect to take on the issue until the new congress is sworn in early next year.

“Gifts from local groups like the dairy producers, speak to the importance of community involvement and the impact that it has on the quality of care for those residing and visiting our County and who use our hospital,” said Coull.

Those interested in learning more about the Back the Build Campaign, should call Shannon at 613-476-1008 ext. 4503 or Marthe at 613-476-1008 ext. 4502. Information can also be found at

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  1. retired dairy farmer says:

    So proud of the dairy producers in the County!

  2. Snowman says:

    Wow. That’s amazing. There are about 30 family owned dairy farms in Prince Edward County. Many of them are younger generation, trying to establish themselves. This is truly
    a wonderful gift to all of us.

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