Laurent Souligny

Laurent Souligny has spent most of his life directly involved in agriculture, much of it based in St. Isidore, Ontario, the home of the Souligny farm and a community in which he and his wife Hélène still reside.

Laurent started farming in 1964 and in 1973 became involved in farm organizations when he joined the Ontario Federation of Agriculture. His advocacy on behalf of Canadian farmers continued, ultimately leading to Laurent becoming the chair of Egg Farmers of Canada, a position he held for11 years. He served as a member of the Board of Egg Farmers of Canada for 17 years.

His goal as chairman of Egg Farmers of Canada was to ensure a strong future for every part of the country’s egg industry. Laurent represented egg producers both in Canada, as well as internationally, frequently travelling abroad to defend the interests of the sector. His tireless work on behalf of his industry led to his selection as chair of the organization representing the five supply-managed industries.

A farmer in his own right, Laurent understands first-hand the challenges facing the industry, and the critical need to work collectively in developing effective agricultural policy to move the sector forward. In addition to the poultry groups, Laurent provided equally strong support to the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, the former International Federation of Agricultural Producers, and many others.

His work on disease mitigation led to the egg industry’s HACCP-based on-farm food safety system. Laurent helped establish Egg Farmers of Canada as a leader in traceability. His family farm was one of the first in Canada to receive a HACCP certificate for food safety.

Laurent reached out to international bodies such as the United Egg Producers to help promote scientific research on the nutritional benefits of eggs. In 2010, he oversaw the creation of a special research chair at the Université Laval that focuses on the economics of egg production. A similar partnership has been established at the University of Guelph, with a focus on laying hen welfare. Another on human nutrition is soon to be announced.

Closer to home, Laurent was president of the Glengarry Federation of Agriculture, a municipal councillor; is a member of the Lions club, Optimist club and the Knights of Columbus. In true Canadian style, he was also a minor hockey coach. In 1999, he was recognized by his county's Soil and Crop Improvement Association with an award of merit.

Nominated By:
  • Egg Farmers of Canada