Canadian Cattle Young Leaders Travel to Ontario for Annual Spring Forum

Calgary, ABLast week, the Canadian Cattle Young Leaders (CYL) Program hosted its annual Spring Forum offering unique learning and networking opportunities for the next generation of beef industry leaders.  

This year’s forum took place from June 6 to June 8, in Guelph and surrounding area. The annual event brings together the program’s 16 participants (ages 18 to 35) from across Canada, for three days of industry tours, classroom learning sessions and networking opportunities.

Speakers and session topics included: building your personal and professional brand, public speaking training, leadership and policy development within the Canadian beef industry, beef sustainability, financial literacy, and the latest innovations in precision agriculture technology.

Young leaders had the opportunity to tour the McDonald’s Canada headquarters in Toronto with networking sessions with leaders across sustainability, communications, supply chain, government affairs and had a unique opportunity to meet and interact with their CEO leadership team. Participants also visited the University of Guelph’s Elora research station and meat science laboratory, and explored the beef supply chain, learning more about innovative sustainability practices with visits to a local cow-calf farm and feedlot.

“By providing these experiences and learning opportunities to young leaders in the Canadian beef industry, we’re equipping them with tools and connections they need to shape a strong future for the industry.” said Nathan Phinney, Canadian Cattle Association, President. “We are thankful to our partners for helping us empower the next generation of industry leaders.”

An annual highlight of the Spring Forum is the reception, held in Waterloo on June 7, to celebrate the generous support of program and event sponsors, and achievements of young leaders in the beef industry. The event provided an excellent opportunity for program participants to build long-lasting connections with sponsor and industry representatives.

This year’s young leaders got a double dose of networking as they teamed up with the Ontario Beef Youth Alliance for the reception and last day of tours. Participants had the opportunity to network with over 30 young beef producers from Ontario and forge valuable connections.

Funding for the Canadian CYL Program is made available through a generous Platinum Partner, McDonald’s Canada, and Foundation Partners Cargill, MNP, New Holland, and Elanco. The program also receives support from Gold Partners – Farm Credit Canada, RBC Future Launch, and Alltech. Program sponsors also assisted with tour coordination and speaker sessions to make this year’s event a success.

The 2024 Spring Forum is a grant recipient of the WestGen Endowment fund this year and had as a Prime Sponsor. The Forum is traditionally held in and around Calgary, and this year’s additional funding helped allow travel to Ontario.

About the Canadian Cattle Young Leaders

Canadian Cattle Young Leaders (CYL) welcomes young people ages 18-35 across Canada, involved in various aspects of the beef supply chain, to be paired with an industry leader in their specific area of interest for a nine-month mentorship. Through mentorship, networking, and travel, the Canadian CYL Program acts as an industry succession planning tool to equip the next generation of leaders with the skills and tools they need to continue to drive the growth and profitability of the Canadian beef industry. Since established by the Canadian Cattle Association in 2010, the program has seen over 180 CYL graduates. Program applications are open annually for ages 18-35 on our website from early January to the end of March. Learn more at

For further information, contact:
Carol Reynolds
Communications Manager
Canadian Cattle Association
403-451-0931 | [email protected]

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