Newfoundland names new agriculture minister

Newfoundland and Labrador’s Fisheries Minister Vaughn Granter, shown here at a scholarship presentation in November, is now also the minister responsible for the provincial Forestry and Agrifoods Agency. (Gov.NL.ca)

Newfoundland and Labrador’s move to cut back on cabinet ministers has led to a new political chief for the province’s agriculture agency.

Vaughn Granter, the MHA for Humber West since 2011 and minister for fisheries and aquaculture since last September, was appointed Thursday to an extra role as minister responsible for the Forestry and Agrifoods Agency.

For Premier Paul Davis, who won last September’s race to replace Tom Marshall as Tory leader, the appointment marks a departure for the ag and forestry agency’s oversight.

The Forestry and Agrifoods Agency was set up in 2007 under the umbrella of the provincial Natural Resources department — hence its cabinet leadership, until now, has rested with the minister for natural resources.

Derrick Dalley, MHA for the Isles of Notre Dame and natural resources minister since 2013, kept that portfolio Thursday in the new cabinet, which Davis has pared down to 13 ministers.

The province hasn’t yet said whether the Forestry and Agrifoods Agency’s administration would also go to Granter’s fisheries department.

Granter was a high school principal in Corner Brook before entering provincial politics. His experience with the agriculture file includes a stint as parliamentary secretary responsible for the Forestry and Agrifoods Agency from 2012 to 2014. — AGCanada.com Network

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