Rob Dougans is leaving his post as president and chief executive officer of the Chicken Farmers of Ontario marketing board effective March 31.
He guided the industry over a major change in attitude, opening the door for small-scale producers who no longer need quota, to an artisanal market policy that also granted approval to produce and process chicken without requiring either production or plant-supply quota and launching a special breeds program that helped satisfy demand for red-feathered birds among the Asian immigrant population.
When Dougans began as chief executive, the chicken board was cracking down on any person keeping meat-bird chickens without quota.
Also during his term, the Ontario board won a long-standing drive to persuade the national agency to grant more production to meet strong Ontario demand that had led to premiums and then a ban on inter-provincial movement, mainly between Ontario and Quebec.
The Ontario Farm Products Marketing Commission also intervened to force price-reducing changes related to improving efficiencies as production volumes increased.