Aug 7, 2023
Former seed potato grower back as Canada’s top agriculture official

A former Prince Edward Island seed potato grower has been named Canada’s new Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

Lawrence MacAulay, a Member of Parliament for Cardigan, replaced Minster Marie-Claude Bibeau, who led the department during the country’s response to the most recent potato wart outbreak on PEI.

Lawrence MacAulay is Canada’s new Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. Photo: Provided

MacAulay previously held the office prior to Bibeau’s appointment, first being named ag minister in November 2015 in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s inaugural cabinet.

MacAulay was named to the post for the second time on July 26.

Bibeau and MacAulay were part of meetings between Trudeau, U.S. President Joe Biden and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack in January 2022 centered on the restoration of U.S. market access for PEI potatoes.

The Prince Edward Island Potato Board congratulated MacAulay on his appointment.

“Minister MacAulay has a strong reputation as an advocate for his constituents and for Prince Edward Island,” board chair Alex Docherty said in a statement. Since Mr. MacAulay was also a seed potato grower before he entered the political arena, it is encouraging that our new Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food will have first-hand knowledge of our industry.”

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