Step 1: Dispute Resolution
While anyone aggrieved by or dissatisfied with an order, decision or determination of a B.C. agriculture commodity board can file an appeal with BCFIRB under the Natural Products Marketing (B.C.) Act, BCFIRB encourages you to consider resolving your issue informally.
Issues can be resolved informally (outside of the formal appeal process) before or after an appeal is filed with BCFIRB. Cooperatively resolving a dispute can be challenging, but in the long run it often leads to better relationships and better results.
Some questions to consider include:
- What is your specific concern(s) about the decision (for example, business impact, industry impact, lack of consultation, not accountable, against current orders or policy)?
- Have you spoken with the commodity board about your concern?
- What have you and the commodity board done together to try to resolve the concern(s)?
- Have you considered bringing in a neutral party to assist with your discussions?
If you are unable to resolve your dispute with a commodity board, BCFIRB can provide assistance with informal resolution as appropriate (for example, facilitation, mediation).
At any time during the appeal process, on its own initiative or at the request of a party, BCFIRB may require the parties to participate in a mandatory facilitated settlement to explore the potential for resolving one or more issues in dispute settlement of all or part of the appeal.
However, it is very important to note that the Natural Products Marketing (BC) Act requires that you must file a written notice of appeal with BCFIRB within thirty (30) days of the commodity board’s order, decision or determination, or you may lose the right to file your appeal.