George R. McLaughlin

George R. McLaughlin has devoted a lifetime to his passion for developing Canadian agriculture. Mr. McLaughlin served as the founding chairman of the Ontario Milk Marketing Board, where he provided integrity, leadership, vision, insight and determination to create one of the premier farmer organizations in Canada. From the beginning George McLaughlin set out to make the OMMB a successful commercial marketing enterprise, second to none in the world. He built a cohesive, well-disciplined organization and hammered out a blueprint to provide order and efficiency to a milk marketing system. He ensured an adequate flow of information among all stakeholders. George provided the fulcrum to launch milk supply management, market expansion, milk recording, milk quality, multiple component testing and pricing and active participation in the International Dairy Federation.

George was an extremely successful dairy and sheep farmer near Oshawa and Beaverton, who took over the family farm shortly after graduating with a BSA from Ontario Agricultural College in 1946. He diligently searched for and implemented innovations to improve his farming operations. The result was the Elmcroft Holsteins line of breeding stock and the production of hybrid sheep breeding stock for the commercial market.

In 1974, George was awarded the H.R. McMillan Laureate in Agriculture recognizing his contributions to agriculture and citizenship. In 1977, Mr. McLaughlin was made a member of the Order of Canada, the highest honour for lifetime achievement in our country.

Mr. McLaughlin served as president of the Dairy Farmers of Canada, president of the Holstein Association of Canada, president of the Ontario Institute of Agrologists and founding chairman of the Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency. He served as chairman of the Farm Debt Review Board from 1986 and 1995, where he developed programs instrumental in helping dedicated producers through the debt crisis by searching for win-win solutions.

His judgments were founded on four concepts: to hear courteously, to answer wisely, to consider soberly and to decide impartially.

An active consultant on agricultural policies and programs with governments and organizations, George McLaughlin, through his lifelong contribution of outstanding leadership to Canadian agriculture, has earned a place in the Canadian Agricultural Hall of Fame.

Nominated By:
  • Dairy Farmers of Ontario