Messages for Simone

After nearly 3 decades of promoting canola provincially here in Alberta, nationally across Canada, and internationally – Simone Demers-Collins has retired as Market Development, Promotion and Education Coordinator of Alberta Canola.

For nearly 30 years Simone has been telling the story of canola to public consumers, educators, and food and health industry influencers. An educator at heart, Simone trained and mentored some of the best chefs, nutritionists, dietitians and home economists working in the Canadian food industry today.

Her successful Alberta Canola Producers newsletter became a foundational piece behind the current Canola Digest. Simone crushed canola seeds with thousands of school children, showing them where the oil came from while teaching them about farming.  Similarly, without her imagination, Chase ‘Superman’ Duffy would not be telling the canola story to thousands more kids.

Everyone who ever engaged with Simone immediately saw her passionate support for farmers and the food they produce. Please join us in thanking her for all the work she has done, and to wish her the best in the future.

Please share some of your Simone stories and help us wish her farewell.

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Messages for Simone

  1. Simone,
    Thank you for your hard work and dedication to sharing the Canola message. You have made a huge contribution to our industry and the whole value chain, from farmers to processors and exporters, is truly grateful. Enjoy a well deserved retirement.

  2. Simone – you always found innovative ways to get information into people’s hands. We will think of you fondly everytime we hand out one of the pens with the dietary fat chart rolled up inside. Perhaps the greatest canola promotional item of all time – one that people keep asking for.

  3. Simone;
    Your untiring efforts to spread the message of canola and it’s advantages to consumers for these many years is truly appreciated! Enjoy your retirement, when you get to do more of the ‘fun’ things in life!

  4. All the best Simone. Thank you for your contribution to our industry.

  5. Congratulations Simone! It’s been a few years since we crossed paths, I enjoyed working with you at CAP and the other odd places we would meet. All the best in your retirement.

  6. Congratulations Simone! Wishing you all the best in your retirement. I only spent a couple of months with you as a dietetic intern but I will always remember you as one of the best preceptors I had. I’m so glad I got a chance to learn alongside you!

  7. Congratulations on your retirement Simone, it was a pleasure working with you. Hope to see you around!

  8. Simone. I’ll never forget the summer of 2013 when I worked at the canola booth at Stampede when I was a summer student for SaskCanola. At the end of my last shift, instead of letting me get into a taxi you insisted that you would personally drive me to the airport. We visited and got to know each other as you navigated us through Calgary traffic. Another distinct memory of my time working with you was spending a layover in an airport together somewhere – again visiting, sharing some laughs, and you sharing your wisdom & advice with me. I’ll also hold fondly the last time we worked together, just last week hosting a canola oil tasting demo for chefs & dietitians. You had a knack for being able to tell the story of canola like it was the first time you were telling it, with a smile on your face and excitement in your voice. Whether you knew it or not at the time, I want you to know now that I’ve looked up to you as a mentor over our years of working together and I greatly admire & respect all that you’ve accomplished for the canola industry. You’ve left a legacy & some big boots to fill. Happy retirement! I know we’ll keep in touch 🙂

  9. It was at an anti-GMO demonstration that I first witnessed Simone’s ability, knowledge of food science, and grace under pressure in action. The demonstration was held in the parking lot of the Whyte Avenue Safeway: actors were dressed up as corn cobs and soybean flowers and were running about terrorizing people in attempts to demonstrate the supposed horrors of GMO’s. We were approached by a demonstrator who wanted to “inform” us. Simone calmly countered every point the demonstrator made. Clearly frustrated, the demonstrator eventually left and while I doubt her mind had been changed, several people around had listened to the exchange. I believe they learned a few things that day. Just another day at the office for Simone.

    Thank you for teaching me, and so many others. Enjoy yourself.

  10. Simone, you’ve been the champion for canola in Alberta for a long time, and your work with chefs, retails and others in the food industry has been invaluable. We really appreciated the enthusiasm you showed for our cold pressed canola oil as we launched it in the marketplace.

    All the best to you as you “shift gears”.

  11. Simone,

    Your enthusiasm, knowledge and influence have helped sustain and advance the entire Canadian Canola Industry. Thank you for all you have done! I enjoyed all of my interactions with you.

    All the Best!

    Neil

  12. Thanks Simone for your efforts and time dedicated to the Alberta Canola Producers and the Canadian Canola industry in moving our Canola industry forward for the betterment of the whole Canola value chain in Canada. It has been great to know and work with you on many initiatives that promoted the health value of Canola to all in the food industry. Many thanks and best wishes in your next endeavours.

  13. Best wishes to both you and Pat for a long, happy and well deserved retirement! Your energy, determination and knowledge have always amazed me. My friend, it has been a pleasure to work with you over the years. I am looking forward to future retiree coffee and gab sessions! Congratulations!.

  14. Simone, you will certainly be missed in your role as a key communicator in the ag biz. It was always a pleasure speaking with you about canola and its attributes. Best wishes upon your retirement.

  15. Congratulations on your retirement Simone! I’ve enjoyed getting to know you throughout the years and greatly appreciated all our discussions. Be it about agriculture, trade shows, marketing or anything else of interest that day. I hope even though you are retiring that you will still keep active with AFWA and CFWF events. All the best to you on the next stage of life’s adventures.

  16. Thanks so much Simone for all your passion and dedication to the Canola Industry in Alberta. I very much enjoyed working with you and sharing stories about our families and our farm. Thank You again! Good luck with your future plans. God Bless you.

  17. Thank you Simone. I have much admiration and appreciation for all you have done for the canola industry. My oldest grandson always is looking for a new Chase Duffy book when he comes to the farm. I enjoyed conversations and time together at conventions. I think of you as not only a colleague but a friend as well. You are a real class act.

    On behalf of ACIDF support for your projects was easy to get knowing it would be a job well done. Again thank you and enjoy your retirement.

  18. Thank you so much for all your contribution to the industry. It’s been nice working with you over the years. Enjoy your retirement!

  19. Simone,
    Congratulations on your retirement! Your smiling face will be missed at the various ag events. All the best!

  20. Thank you Simone for your passionate unrelenting promotion of canola on behalf of Alberta and western Canadian producers. Your positive personality and dietary knowledge is a great asset and increased awareness of the attributes of canola oil to professionals and consumers.

  21. All the best in your new adventure, Simone.
    I’ve enjoyed working with you in a couple of different roles over the years. You always set the standard others aspired to, including me.
    ACIDF has been proud to support your projects. We consider them to be among our most successful. The industry won’t be quite the same without your optimism and perspective to guide it.

  22. Hey Simone
    You are going to be missed — in a big way. You have made a huge contribution to the Canola industry through promotion, understanding and passion for what you do! That is much appreciated and may your retirement be filled with happiness and pleasant surprises.
    Cheers Jack

  23. Congratulations Simone! I’ve enjoyed working with you on the CAP board. Thank you for all your contributions to Ag education. All the best!

  24. Thanks Simone! Your enthusiasm and dedication has been such a reward to the Canola Industry be it from the home to the International market place. Enjoy your retirement and new adventures. Bon Appetit!

  25. Congratulations on your retirement Simone!
    To a brilliant career that made a difference in this world!!!

  26. Simone, I have greatly enjoyed working with you over the years at the canola learning center at the Calgary Stampede, your energy and enthusiasm for promoting canola was amazing, and the time and effort you put into the canola learning center over the years was impressive. I will miss seeing you at canola events, best wishes for the future!

  27. When I think of Alberta Canola Producers and Canola in general I think of you first. Thank you Simone.

  28. It was a pleasure working with you over the years. Your passion for the industry and dedication to being an ambassador for canola and agriculture was clear to see. You will be missed. All the best to you Simone!

  29. Congratulations on your retirement, Simone! I have enjoyed working with you and will miss your passion and enthusiasm for the ag industry as well as your sense of humour! All the best to you as you start this new journey in life.

  30. Simone, your contribution to the canola industry is immense and you have certainly earned a chapter or two in the Storybook of Canola! What set you apart was the ability to make the ordinary so unique. We recall asking for a basketful of canola products as a silent auction item. Not only was it assembled creatively it was hand-delivered to Concordia College with a smile!! The city crowd who bid on that basket were certainly impressed with it, a true item of interest!! Thank you for that and for all you’ve done as a canola promoter!! Best wishes for a long, healthy retirement.
    With admiration,

  31. Simone you are one in a million. You’re an exceptional, talented and gifted lady that truly has made history in the Canola Industry.

  32. Thank you Simone for everything you have done for agriculture in Alberta and the prairies. Your endless and tireless promotion and support of the industry, including direct marketing, has helped it to flourish. It was a pleasure to work with you and I only wish that we would have been able to offer you more when you were working with farmers’ markets. Your creative enthusiasm in those early years of Hort Congress was tremendously important to its grow and becoming the premier event for horticulture in Alberta.
    Best wishes for your retirement.

  33. Hi Simone. Wow, what a great run you had with Alberta Canola. It was my pleasure to have spent time working with you on the board. I always looked forward to your presentations at our meetings. So many connections with so many people. Your devotion to our industry will be felt for years to come. That’s something to be very proud of. Have a great retirement.

  34. Dear Simone,
    It was a pleasure working with you, your visionary work with the Canola industry has been fantastic. I hope all is well, wishing you all the best.
    Emily Andreiuk

  35. Best wishes SIMONE as you begin the next chapter. Thank you for sharing and teaching over the years. You have the gentle ability to influence, inform and educate. You have made a mark on the culinary world and nutrition health of Canadians.

  36. Words cannot express the impact hat you have had on the canola industry Simone! Your tireless efforts over the past 30 years have made a huge impact on the daily health of people around the world. Farmers like myself owe you a huge thank you for promoting this prosperous crop that supports our families and communities.
    No one will truly be able to replace the networks of people that you have established. But You have left a great legacy framework for the next person that you pass the torch to.
    I hope you thoroughly enjoy your retirement but still remember to come visit your friends and tell us what new adventures you have discovered.
    Take care and congratulations on your retirement Simone!

  37. Wishing you the best in your future endeavours. I am grateful that I was able to get to know you during Jacks reign on the canola board. You were a wonderful ambassador for canola and always friendly and welcoming. Thank you. Sharon

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