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Pacific Northwest Canola Association begins first steps  

Farmers harvest canola south of Pullman.
Farmers harvest canola south of Pullman in August 2017.

Canola acreage in Washington, Montana, and the Pacific Northwest has reached record levels this year, and interest from producers who have never grown the crop before continues to increase.

The Northwest is the only canola production region in the U.S. without a canola association, so a concerted effort to form one began earlier this year during WSU Washington Oilseed Cropping Systems workshops.

The first major step towards the formation of the Pacific Northwest Canola Association (PNWCA) was achieved in July when a certificate of incorporation was received from the Washington Secretary of State. A steering committee comprised of canola producers, industry members, and university faculty has been working on bylaws, and is now seeking nominations for producer members for the board of directors.

Financial support for completing the legal side of the association was secured from the U.S. Canola Association last year by Anna Scharf, a canola producer in the Willamette Valley.

Karen Sowers, Extension Specialist with the WSU-WOCS project, has taken the lead on working through the process, and reports the steering committee hopes to see the PNWCA become finalized by the end of the year.

Updates will be posted on the WOCS website, www.css.wsu.edu/oilseeds, and on Facebook. For more information, send an email to ksowers@wsu.edu.