Source: Canadian Beef Check-Off
The Canadian Beef Check-Off Agency (the Agency) is focusing on the proper remittance and collection of check-off across the country this year, and the Agency’s three federally-appointed inspectors recently completed a live training audit with the help of Gateway Livestock Marketing Ltd. (GLM). The inspectors also worked on behalf of the Alberta Beef Producers to audit for Alberta’s provincial service fee at the same time.
The half-day training audit was conducted on April 24 in Taber, AB at GLM’s head office, after a day of learning more about cattle dealers and marketing companies, and how they operate in western Canada.
GLM’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Richard Sargent, provided beneficial insight for the Agency’s inspectors to better understand the transactions that occur, and the records available through the chain of custody of beef cattle in Canada.
“The audit went very smoothly and professionally,” said Sargent. “The inspectors were able to pinpoint a few examples of remittance changes that may even create efficiencies in our own internal processes. We were happy to help the Agency learn more about our business.”
The Agency’s lead inspector, Brad McCallum, was pleased with the training audit process and results.
“Conducting a live audit on actual dealer and broker transactions on cattle in Canada helps us become more in tune with the records available to us during audits, and working closely with Richard at GLM before, during and after help us improve our process with input from the client side,” said McCallum.
The Agency’s inspectors are confident all check-off was collected and remitted appropriately.
“Training audits provide our inspectors insight into the records and transactions available in different regions, and to help promote the appropriate collection and remittance of check-off in Canada,” said Melinda German, General Manager of the Canadian Beef Check-Off Agency.
Going forward, the Agency will be conducting additional audits, both to increase the depth of knowledge of inspectors, and to ensure check-off is being deducted and remitted appropriately. With two inspectors stationed in Alberta and one in Nova Scotia, the Agency can focus on regional remittance and work directly with the provincial associations to include any provincial service charges or check-off audits in conjunction.
“Producers expect a strong return in research and marketing for their investment, and we want the administration of the check-off, like auditing and inspecting for proper remittance and collection, to provide value too,” said German. “Every dollar we can help get remitted properly can bring $14 in benefits to Canadian producers.”
Provincial check-off or service fees are administered by the provincial cattle associations in each province, and are primarily invested in provincial programming and policy/lobby work. The national check-off, administered by the Canadian Beef Check-Off Agency is invested in research, market development and promotion activities with national benefit.
Over the next year, the Agency will continue working with the provincial cattle associations to identify areas where collection and remittance may need additional attention, and to increase the awareness of check-off collection and remittance procedures across the country.