(North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce, Inc.)

We are an incorporated, not for profit, entity which was formed in January 2009 by concerned citizens from Melancthon and Mulmur Townships.

The NDACT executive board was formed by a group of volunteers nominated by community members.

At the inaugural meeting, members of the community gathered to voice their concerns and to find out more about The Highland Companies plans regarding the more than 6,000 acres of prime agricultural land that they had amassed as of that date. Up to that point in time, and for a lengthy period of time afterwards, Highland reiterated to the community that they had been acquiring large tracts of agricultural land solely with a view to creating a world class farming operation, but residents were highly skeptical.

By the date of the meeting, there was a growing suspicion in the area that other plans were afoot, although the applicant would not clearly admit so. There was significant evidence that the applicant was undertaking activities that were inconsistent with its stated intentions (of just being interested in potato farming) including well testing and drilling, archaeological studies, woodlot and fence row clearing and the demolition of homesteads. Highland stated that these activities were merely to improve their farming operations.

  • International Plowing Match - Sep. 20-24, 2016

    Drop in and visit us the Plowing Match!

    Click on the image for full details.


  • To Sprawl or Not to Sprawl. Saving Ontario's Greenbelt - Apr. 27, 2016

    Food & Water First’s Carl Cosack – a veteran of the Stop the Mega Quarry movement – will speak at a special gathering in Toronto on April 27th: “To Sprawl or Not To Sprawl. Saving Ontario’s Greenbelt.”

    This information session will encourage Torontonians to get involved in the campaign to strengthen and expand the Greenbelt as its farmland, water and forests face pressure from developers. Carl joins speakers from Environmental Defence, Oak Ridges Moraine Land Trust and Ontario Nature.

    The event is FREE. Click to register.

    Date: Wednesday, April 27

    Time: 7pm-9pm

    Place: St. Colomba Church, 2723 St. Clair Avenue East, Toronto

  • Restoring and Protecting Our Soil - Apr. 30, 2016

    Our Partner MC2 Presents....


  • Coordinated Land-use review: Your support is key

    As you know there is a coordinated land-use review underway until the end of May. NDACT was invited to a stakeholders’ meeting earlier in the process. We feel that it would be an important supplemental action to send a formal letter outlining our recommendations for this review. As well, this allows our supporters to better understand our position, and give you an opportunity to stand with us.

    Please scroll down and see the letter for details.

    Full details of review.

    The Mega Quarry campaign demonstrated that there are many in Ontario who are concerned about the future of our land and water ,and that many voices together can evoke meaningful change. This is a key opportunity to work together.

    Many thanks for your support.

    Shirley Boxem  Chair NDACT

    a healthy food future is possible


  • NDACT Annual General Meeting - July 9, 2015

    Annual General Meeting for NDACT Members


    Date: July 9, 2015

    Time: 7:00 PM

    Location: Hornings Mills Community Hall, 14 Mill St., Hornings Mills

    If you are not a paid member for 2015, and would like to attend and have voting privileges, you may come to the meeting and pay your $30.00 membership at the meeting.

    Membership forms.


    (the “Corporation”)

    Date of this notice: April 24, 2015

    Attention: All Members of North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce, Inc.

    Notice is hereby given that the Annual Meeting will be held as follows:

    To be held on Thursday July 9, 2015, 7:00 pm

    Location: Horning’s Mills Community Centre

    This meeting will be held for the following business purposes:

    1. To elect Directors;

    2. To receive and consider the financial statements of the Corporation; and

    3. Transact any and all such business that may lawfully come before such meeting.

    Persons who are entitled to vote comprise the Corporation’s Directors, and those Members in good standing that have paid their annual Membership dues in respect of the calendar year 2015, either prior to this date or at any time up to the commencement of this Annual Meeting, and who have been accepted as Members by the Corporation.

    Any Member who will be unable to attend has the right to vote by proxy.


    Shirley Boxem, Chair

  • Pegram Barn Fest - June 14, 2015

    Pegram Picnics Presents


    All proceeds go to Food & Water First.

    Join them for a fun day in the country and celebrate with farmers, artisans and artists, musicians, food producers and food lovers.

    Date: Sunday June 14, 2015

    Time: 11 AM - 4 PM

    Where: Pegram Farms, Mulmur ON

    Tickets: Adults $15.00, Children $8.00, Family $40.00

    Purchase Tickets.

    Full details.

  • Symphony of the Soil - April 10, 2015


    Our Partners at Green Connections  are hosting a special airing of “Symphony of the Soil” on Friday, April 10! Filmed on four continents, the movie explores the role soil plays in our lives and on this fragile planet. It is the “living skin of the Earth.”

    Join Green Connections at Sharon Hope United Church (18648 Leslie St., Sharon ON). Doors open at 7pm. No reservations required. Admission by donation. There will be door prizes and a discussion following this important film.

    Watch the Symphony of the Soil trailer and make plans to see it April 10th!

  • Public Input Needed - Review for Growth Plan and Greenbelt

    Ontario Co-ordinated Review for Growth Plan and Greenbelt

    Deadline for comments: May 28, 2015

    Four Ontario Growth Plans are under review.

    These plans include:The Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, The Greenbelt Plan, The Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan and the Niagara Escarpment Plan

    Documents are found at:



    Schedule of Town Hall Meetings to get more information.


    Our prime objectives: 

    • Class 1 farmland be preserved and not rezoned
    • Moratorium on rezoning of Class 1 farmland be put in place
    • Our source waters be protected

    Have your say

    Sample letter.

    There are several ways to participate:

    • Email a submission to landuseplanningreview@ontario.ca
    • Write to :
      Land Use Planning Review
      Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
      Ontario Growth Secretariat
      777 Bay Street, Suite 425 (4th Floor)
      Toronto, ON M5G 2E5


    Deadline for comments: May 28, 2015

    If you have any questions regarding how to participate in the review, please call 1-800-665-1120 or email landuseplanningreview@ontario.ca.

  • MC2 Townhall Meeting - May 3, 2014


    Present a Townhall Meeting


    Date and Time: May 3, 2014 - 10am to Noon (coffee at 9:30am)

    Location: Rosemont Hall

    (across from the Globe Restaurant - HW 89 in Rosemont)


    An opportunity to catch up and be fully informed on key

    issues in our community

  • Walk the Green Carpet on Earth Day


    Date & Time: Tuesday April 22, 2014 at 7:30 PM

    Location: Circle Theatre, 19 Victoria St. E., New Tecumseth-Alliston



    Watch the trailer.

  • Green Living Show - April 25-27, 2014


    The Food and Water First Team will be at the Green Living Show!

    Date: April 25 - 27, 2014

    Location: Direct Energy Centre, 100 Princes' Blvd., Toronto, ON

    Full details.

  • Aware Simcoe Annual General Meeting - May 3, 2014


    Public meeting on preserving the Village of Midhurst and meeting the challenge presented by:

    The Midhurst Secondary Plan


    the ‘Special Rule’

  • "Food & Water First" at Queen's Park

     Our calls for the preservation of the farmland that grows our food is gaining traction. Monday April 29, 2013, in the Ontario Legislature, Liberal MPP Mike Colle raised the issue of local food, and he singled out a famous town and its famous produce! 

    Excerpts from April 29:

    Hon. Kathleen O. Wynne: Joining us in the east gallery at some point: Donna Tranquada, from the North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce; Carl Cosack, who’s the chair of that same group; Dave Vander Zaag, who’s a Melancthon potato farmer; and Harvey Kolodny, professor emeritus, Rotman School. Welcome to the House.


    Mr. Mike Colle: Minister, a lot of my local green-grocers and restaurants say they want to bring in potatoes from Melancthon; they want to bring in tomatoes from Leamington. They want that ability to promote these wonderful, beautiful, natural Ontario products. I hope we can get the message across to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency that we’re all supporting local food together, because when local food is eaten, everybody wins. The farmers win, the local restaurants win, the local green-grocers win, and all Ontarians win with wonderful, local Ontario food.Donna Tranquada, from the North Dufferin Agricultural and Community Taskforce; Carl Cosack, who’s the chair of that same group; Dave Vander Zaag, who’s a Melancthon potato farmer; and Harvey Kolodny, professor emeritus, Rotman School. Welcome to the House.

    Click here to read the entire Hansard.

  • ARA Review to Resume

    Thank you!


    It took several weeks and many, many e-mails, but we did it! The review of the outdated Aggregate Resources Act will be completed by the Standing Committee on General Government! We received word yesterday afternoon (April 25, 2013), that the Liberals had introduced a motion in the House to resume the ARA review. The House voted unanimously in favour of the motion and so the Committee is now authorized to finish the job that began one year ago. The Committee members will meet Monday to discuss their schedule and the writing of the final report. 


      If not for the mega quarry fight, a review of the ARA would not have been ordered by the province. If not for all of you, your tenacity and keyboards, and the hard work of MPP’s from all parties, the ARA review may not have been completed.

    People Power works! Thank you!

    More details will follow!

  • Call to Action - ARA Review Next Round




       The Standing Committee on General Government has wrapped up two weeks of public hearings on traffic congestion and auto insurance. While the fate of the review of the Aggregate Resources Act is still uncertain, we understand the sub-committee will be discussing it in the coming days. We also understand the three House Leaders must give the green light for the ARA review to be completed and a final report issued. 

      Below are the e-mail addresses of the three House Leaders and sub-committee members. There's also a brief sample letter. As always, we encourage you to add your own thoughts to ensure the MPPs are not receiving form letters.


    Sub-Committee members


    Bas Balkissoon, Chairman        bbalkissoon.mpp@liberal.ola.org

    Mike Colle, Liberal MPP            mcolle.mpp@liberal.ola.org

    Rosario Marchese, NDP MPP     rmarchese-qp@ndp.on.ca

    Laurie Scott, PC MPP               laurie.scott@pc.ola.org


    House Leaders


    Liberal     John Milloy     jmilloy.mpp@liberal.ola.org

    PC           Jim Wilson      jim.wilson@pc.ola.org

    NDP        Gilles Bisson    gbisson@ndp.on.ca 



    To the House Leaders and members of the sub-committee of the Standing Committee on General Government:


     Now that the Standing Committee on General Government has finished its hearings into traffic congestion and auto insurance, I am asking the House Leaders and Committee members to complete the job of reviewing the Aggregate Resources Act. As you are aware, the review of the ARA was ordered by the government in September 2011 because of the controversy over the proposed Highland mega quarry. It would have destroyed a swath of prime farmland and impacted the headwaters of five river systems in perpetuity. A review of the outdated ARA was a wise decision.


      One year ago, representatives from the aggregate industry and agricultural sector participated in the Committee's public hearings. Farmers, members of agricultural organizations and other concerned Ontarians did their duty as engaged citizens. They called for the protection of the province's prime farmland and source water regions. Their hard work and well-researched suggestions must be respected. The rare agricultural soil and water resources that sustain us and our economy cannot wait any longer. It's time to complete the ARA review and make the necessary revisions to the legislation.



     Yours sincerely,










  • Food & Water First Campaign Tour - April & May 2013

    fwflogo1-thumbThe Food & Water First Tour Continues

    April 17, 2013 - Essa Township Council  6:00 pm

    April 18, 2013 - Rotary Club, Shelburne

    April 21, 2013 – Melancthon Open House 1-3:00 pm

    May 4, 2013 – Aware Simcoe Public Information Session – 9:30 am – Alliston Theatre (Shirley Boxem, Carl Cosack and Donna Tranquada)

    May 6, 2013 – Adjala Tosorontio Township Council – 6:30 pm

    May 6, 2013 - Tottenham - 7:00 pm

    May 14, 2013 – Grand Valley Council – time tbd

    May 21, 2103 - Collingwood and Wasaga Beach - Carl Cosack and Shirley Boxem

    May 25, 2013 – Primrose School Eco Extravaganza 9 am - 12:00 noon

  • Food & Water First Signs and Stickers - Open House Sun. Apr. 14, 2013

    NDACT Lawn Signs and Stickers Open House

    Sunday April 14, 9:00 – 12:00

    527507 5 Sideroad Mulmur, ON - west of 4th Line E (2 Lines west of Stanton Store on Airport Rd.)

    Phone: 519-925-0347

    This Open House for anyone wishing to purchase, exchange, bring some to Toronto, etc.

    Preferred Donation (this is an at-cost initiative):

    • Exchange for old signs – free
    • Lawn Signs - $5-$10
    • Bumper Stickers - $5
    • Round Decals - $2


    Shirley Boxem

    NDACT Secretary

  • Green Living Show - Apr. 12-14, 2013

    NDACT will not have a booth at the show this year,


    we are sharing free admission tickets to the Green Living Show with you!

    Friday April 12 to Sunday April 14, 2013 at the Direct Energy Centre, Toronto

    Click here to download tickets and show details. (1.2 MB)



  • Call to Action - Resume Review of ARA

    It's been nearly a year since public hearings were held into the Aggregate Resources Act. Excellent, thoughtful presentations were made by agricultural stakeholders and mega quarry opponents. The hearings were packed and change was in the air. But, we've learned the Standing Committee on General Government now wants to focus on traffic congestion and auto insurance. Any further delay in reviewing the ARA means a further delay in revising the legislation. Our prime farmland and source water regions remain at risk! 


    Below is a template letter addressed to the Committee urging its members to finish the job. The e-mail addresses of the Committee MPPs and Chairman are also provided.


    Please add your own thoughts/experience/expertise to the letter. Let us know what responses you receive, if any! 

     Write to:

     Bas Balkissoon, Chairman   bbalkissoon.mpp@liberal.ola.org

    Donna Cansfield                dcansfield.mpp@liberal.ola.org

    Rick Bartolucci                   rbartolucci.mpp@liberal.ola.org

    Sarah Campbell                 scampbell-qp@ndp.on.ca

    Mike Colle                          mcolle.mpp@liberal.ola.org

    Rosario Marchese              rmarchese-qp@ndp.on.ca

    Laurie Scott                        laurie.scott@pc.ola.org

    Todd Smith                         todd.smith@pc.ola.org

    Jeff Yurek                           jeff.yurek@pc.ola.org 



    To the members of the Standing Committee on General Government: 

       I am writing to urge you to resume the review of the Aggregate Resources Act. This important process was ordered by the government in the fall of 2011 in response to the proposed Highland mega quarry. The application for the largest quarry in Canadian history on the best farmland in Ontario and at the headwaters of five river systems, exposed the many flaws in the outdated ARA. Public hearings were held last spring, yet the job is far from done.

      I understand that the Committee is now focusing on auto insurance and traffic congestion. While these are worthy matters to study, the review of the ARA has not yet been completed. Why would the Committee head off in a new direction when there is vital work to be done on the ARA?

     As you'll recall, the Committee heard from an array of presenters last spring, including many agricultural stakeholders. Several of those who made submissions were individuals who had never before participated in public hearings. They spent a great amount of time researching and writing their presentations. Their speeches outlined the value of agriculture to Ontario, its importance to our economic health and the well-being of our fellow citizens. All of the agricultural stakeholders stressed that prime farmland is at risk under the ARA. Indeed, at the end of the Toronto hearings, a member of the Committee stated "Clearly, there's an urgency to protect prime farmland."

      It is critical that the review of the ARA be completed. Those who participated in the process deserve to have their submissions respected and also reflected in a final report. I urge the Committee to continue its work on the ARA. The interests of a growing number of Ontarians will not be served if the ARA review is further delayed or shelved.


    Yours sincerely,


  • Georgian Bay Food Alliance Dinner - April 24, 2012

    FOOD & WATER      

    The Georgian Bay Food Alliance (GBFA)*
    Invites you to a community


    When: Tuesday April 24th at 5:30 p.m.
    Location: All Saints Anglican Church, Church Hall, 32 Elgin Street, Collingwood

    Dinner speaker will be:

     Carl Cosack, Local Honeywood farmer and NDACT Chair

    Inform YOURSELF about Quarry impacts on the local water supply and consequently your Local Food

    For more information and to reserve a seat at the Pasta Pot Luck, please call
    Eva Meriorg – 705-888-5862

    *The Georgian Bay Food Alliance (GBFA) The Georgian Bay Food Alliance is a group of like-minded individuals, professionals and organizations promoting healthy sustainable local food. The GBFA vision is to support a community that values and has access to fresh local food through a vibrant commercial and domestic food system.

  • Summit at York University - April 13, 2012

    "Re-imagining Our Cities: Toward a Comprehensive Strategy for the Urban Economies of Southern Ontario"

    Date: Friday April 13, 2012

    Location: York University, Toronto, Ontario

    NDACT will be present at this summit

  • Anniversary of The Great Walk to Stop the Quarry - April 29, 2012


    Danny Beaton: Honour and Protect Mother Earth

    Celebrate life, justice, earth, air, fire, water

    Date: Sunday, April 29, 2012

    Time: 1:30 PM

    Where: First Unitarian Congregation of Ontario, 175 St Clair Ave West (at Avenue Road). For directions, please go to: http://firstunitariantoronto.org/thinking-of-visiting-us/getting-here


    TICKETS $15 (sliding scale available) EVERYONE WELCOME

    Limited seating - Get your tickets early

    Learn about environmental protection through a North American Native Perspective. Get your "Stop the Mega-Quarry” signs & buttons, and NDACT membership.

    Sponsored by First Unitarian Green Team & Toronto Chapter Council of Canadians

    For more information, please go to: http://firstunitariantoronto.org/social-justice/green-team/328-danny-beaton-talk-20120429

  • Water Docs - "Blue Gold" & "The Mega Quarry Film" - April 5, 2012

    wat.doc-apr-thumbby Jason van Bruggen

    April 5, 2012 at 7 PM 

    Jason & NDACT Chair, Carl Cosack, will be present to discuss the film.

    Blue Gold: World Water Wars film poster

    Location: Ralph Thornton Community Centre, 2nd floor, 765 Queen St. E. at Saulter St. (2 blocks east of Broadview Ave., Toronto)


  • Kazoofest - Esther Grey & Bry Webb - April 15, 2012

    Kazoo! & Cassettestival present:

    kazoofest-thumbBreakfast Show!

    Date: Sunday April 15, 2012

    Time: Breakfast starts at 10:00 AM

    Esther Grey 11:00 AM

    Bry Webb & TheProviders 12:00 PM

    Location: Ed Video Gallery (40 Baker St), Guelph, ON

    All Ages Family friendly event $10/PWYC

    Kazoo! is a Guelph based non-profit artist run organization interested in creating a fun and exciting space for live music and art in our community. Kazoo! festival is a five day arts festival happening April 11-15th 2012 in the heart of downtown Guelph.

    Proceeds from this show will go to support NDACT.

    For more information, go to:


  • Turning Inspiration into Action - April 17, 2012

    A Unified Network for Positive Change -

    The Inner Garden Presents, Julia Butterfly Hill

    Date: Tuesday April 17, 2012

    Time: 7:00 - 9:00 PM

    Location: OISE at University of Toronto, 252 Bloor St. W., Toronto

    Click here for full details.

    Click here for "The Inner Garden" events.

  • "The View From Here" Art Show - April 22, 2012

    aam-apr-22-12-thumbWhen: Sunday, April 22, 2012

    Time: 11AM - 5 PM

    Location: Honeywood Arena, 706114 County Rd. 21, Honeywood

    Featuring the work of more than 40 artists. All proceeds go to the campaign to stop the Mega Quarry.

    For full details, please go to their website.

    Click on the poster for an enlarged view of the poster with event details.

  • Melancthon's Proposed Official Plan - NDACT's Position

    In our call to action, we asked people to submit their comments about the proposal for Melancthon's Official Plan, to the Township. Thank you to all that took the time to do so. It is greatly appreciated.

    Our position is stated in the letter by Planscape, NDACT's Planner. Click here to view letter.

    To view the original "call to action" with details and a link to Melancthon's proposal, click here.