P.E.I. names new agriculture minister

Robert Henderson, second from left, has been shuffled from health and wellness to agriculture and fisheries in P.E.I. Premier Wade MacLauchlan’s new cabinet. (PrinceEdwardIsland.ca)

Prince Edward Island’s minister of agriculture and fisheries has quit the post after announcing his decision not to seek re-election.

Alan McIsaac, the MLA for Vernon River-Stratford since 2007 and the province’s ag minister since 2015, announced Wednesday he won’t run in the next provincial election, scheduled for October next year.

“Given this, I feel it is the right time to no longer serve in cabinet and to focus on my constituents,” he said in a release.

The departures of McIsaac and Finance Minister Allen Roach — who also announced Wednesday he won’t seek re-election — have spurred Premier Wade MacLauchlan to shuffle his cabinet.

MacLauchlan on Wednesday named Robert Henderson, the MLA for O’Leary-Inverness since 2007, to replace McIsaac as ag and fisheries minister.

Henderson lives at Freeland, about 40 km north of Summerside, where he previously grew potatoes and blueberries and raised beef cattle. He has also previously worked as an economic development officer and employment counselor.

Henderson had served since 2016 as minister of health and wellness and previously as minister of tourism and culture (2011-15). He has also previously sat on the legislature’s standing committee on agriculture and fisheries.

McIsaac, a dairy farmer before entering politics, brought a significant farm policy resume to his stint on the agriculture file, having chaired the province’s milk marketing board and served as an executive member with the P.E.I. Federation of Agriculture and Holstein Canada.

McIsaac had also previously served as education and transportation minister and oversaw the merger of the agriculture and fisheries files, which previously were handled separately in the agriculture and forestry ministry and fisheries, aquaculture and rural development ministry. — AGCanada.com Network

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