Overview

Unique to North America, Alberta’s Agricultural Service Boards (ASBs) have provided over 75 years of continuous service since 1945.

The Agricultural Service Board Act is responsible for ASBs. It allows local municipal councils to appoint agricultural service boards to address agricultural concerns in their communities. These boards can be made up of any combination of public or private individuals who have agricultural knowledge. The boards develop policies and programs for the local agricultural sector.

The provincial government, through Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, partners with these boards to ensure we collectively maintain market access and improve agricultural production.

The 69 ASBs in Alberta help nearly 60,000 farms and ranches to protect the over 50 million acres they farm. These local boards work in their communities to help:

  • manage agricultural weeds and pests
  • conserve soil and water
  • enhance and protect viable and sustainable agricultural practices
  • control of animal diseases
  • develop municipal policies

Resources

Agriculture Service Boards factsheet

The ASB Orientation Manual describes how these boards are formed, governed and funded. Detailed information about ASB legislation, guidelines and programs is provided in the orientation manual Appendix.

See all ASB Resources.

ASB regions

Over 69 ASBs are located in 5 regions across Alberta.

Agriculture Service Board Regions map
Figure 1. Agriculture Service Board Regions

Agricultural Fieldmen

As per the ASB Act, an Agricultural Fieldman is a qualified person hired by the council and employed on a full-time basis. The ASB Act requires that once a council has established a board, that the council, in consultation with the board, must appoint a qualified person as agricultural fieldman to implement agricultural policies and programs and to manage the agricultural resources of the municipality.

The agricultural fieldman is a designated officer of the municipality and is automatically appointed as an inspector under the legislation listed below.

Provincial Committee

The ASB Provincial Committee is an advisory panel, as outlined in its Terms of Reference, to local ASBs as well as Alberta Agriculture and Forestry.

To achieve a collective, provincial voice for facilitating and representing both the diversity and commonalities of ASBs, there are specified provincial Resolution Rules of Procedures.

Provincial resolutions

Regional meetings

The ASB regional conferences have resolution sessions guided by regional Resolution Rules of Procedure. This Resolution Writing resource provides assistance in crafting clear and concise resolutions.

Plan ahead with the Hosting Schedule for ASB Regional Conferences.

Resolutions

Resolutions that receive approval at a Provincial ASB Conference are considered ‘active’ for a period of 5 years. The Provincial ASB Committee advocates for these resolutions for this time period. Once a resolution expires, it may be brought back to the voting delegates for approval again at the next Provincial ASB Conference.

See resolutions for which the Provincial Committee is currently advocating.

Grant program

The ASB provides grants for rural municipalities that have an established Agricultural Service Board and fulfil all requirements under the Agricultural Service Board Act.

For information on the 2020-24 grant program, see Agricultural Service Board Grant.

Legislation

The Agricultural Service Board Act sets out the framework for the establishment of an ASB by an incorporated municipal district or specialized municipality.

The Agricultural Service Board Act Forms Regulation contains 2 land titles forms used for the possession and control of land.

Agricultural Fieldmen are appointed as inspectors or regulatory officers to administer the 4 acts for which Alberta municipalities and counties have legal obligations:

Agricultural Fieldmen also assist in the provincial enforcement of the Animal Health Act.

Weed and pest control

Local service boards help nearly 60,000 farms and ranches to protect the over 50 million acres they farm by helping them manage weeds and pests.

For information on weed identification and management, visit ASB Resources.

Municipal policies and bylaws

For policies and bylaws on grasshoppers, clubroot, fusarium and other pests and diseases, visit ASB bylaws and policies for municipalities.

Contact

Connect with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry ASB unit staff:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-980-4878
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
Fax: 780-422-7755
Email: See contact information for all unit staff

Mail address:
Alberta Agriculture and Forestry
Agricultural Service Board Program
106, Provincial Building
4709 44 Avenue
Stony Plain, Alberta  T7Z 1N4

Contact Agricultural Fieldmen
Contact the ASB Provincial Committee