Global’s Food and Agriculture practice works with clients throughout the food supply chain, from farmers through to manufacturers, restaurants and retailers.  We provide a full range of public affairs services in areas such as regulatory and policy issues, health and food safety, animal health, product recalls, risk management, amongst other objectives. Our team has in-depth and multidisciplinary experience managing individual client’s relations with governments, media and stakeholders. Working across jurisdictions we help clients attain commercial success.

Lead Contact:

Michael Mactaggart
Telephone: 416-597-3473


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Team Lead

Gil Barrows">Barrows

Senior Associate

Telephone: 613-783-3444


Gil Barrows is a Senior Associate in Global’s Agri-food, Consumer Issues and International Trade practice groups. In his more than 30 years of experience in public affairs, he has provided policy analysis and strategic advice to clients ranging from Fortune 500 CEOs to marketers, technical experts and others who need to communicate effectively to achieve their objectives with governments and media. His experience crosses issues such as environmental policy, heavy industry regulation, children’s health, advertising, privacy policy, consumer safety and retail. He has experience in issues management for coalitions on matters of public controversy, international trade policy and negotiations, and specific product approvals.
In addition to his consulting experience, Gil has worked as a trade association executive and has participated in federal government interchange programs as a senior advisor in Global Affairs Canada and the former Consumer and Corporate Affairs Canada. Gil holds a Bachelor of Journalism (Hon) from Carleton University.

Kristin Anderson">Anderson

Senior Vice President

Telephone: 403-264-8430


Kristin Anderson is Senior Vice President, managing Global’s Alberta practice from Calgary. She has over ten years of experience providing senior strategic counsel and guidance to clients across all sectors of the economy. She excels in building advocacy strategies that drive successful outcomes for Global’s clients. Prior to joining the company, Kristin worked in Stephen Harper’s Office of the Leader of the Opposition in Ottawa and for Nortel Networks, in the United Kingdom. Kristin is passionate about community-building and sits on the Board of Directors for the Carya Society of Calgary; the Calgary International Film Festival; and Alberta Women Entrepreneurs. She also participates in fundraising initiatives for the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter. She holds a Bachelor’s of Arts degree from the University of Calgary.

Kim Haakstad">Haakstad

Vice President

Telephone: 604-630-1069


Kim Haakstad is a master communicator with two decades of experience as a senior political aide and advisor for public, private and business organizations. She has built a reputation of maintaining integrity through adversity and brings a first-hand understanding of the inner workings of government to Global’s clients. Kim was a political advisor as a constituency assistant for then MLA Christy Clark in the mid-’90’s. She was Ministerial Assistant in the Ministries of Education and Family and Children before being appointed Deputy Chief of Staff, Operations for the Premier’s Office in 2011—one of a handful of senior political advisors to the government. Most recently she worked as Manager of Local and Aboriginal Content Strategy for Spectra Energy’s Western Canadian business where her work ensured Aboriginal communities could more fully participate in projects occurring in their Traditional Territory.

Jason Langrish">Langrish

Special Advisor


Jason Langrish is the Executive Director of the Canada Europe Roundtable for Business, an advocacy group that has been deeply involved in the launch of negotiations for a Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement. He founded the Energy Roundtable in 2004 and serves as its President hosting conferences in Calgary, Toronto and London. Through this role Jason has been a major advocate for Canadian energy across Canada and internationally. Jason worked in the trade policy section of the Canadian Mission to the European Union in Brussels from 2000 to 2003. He established one of the UK’s largest environmental associations, based in London.
He is a guest lecturer at Schulich Business School in Toronto and The Rotman School of Business at the University of Toronto. He was educated at the University of Victoria, University of Western Ontario and the London School of Economics.

Candice Laws">Laws


Telephone: 403-269-1624


Candice Laws is a Director and a key member of Global’s Western Canada government relations practice. Based in Calgary, she supports client initiatives in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Candice assists clients by providing government and current affairs monitoring, analysis, and strategic advice on a range of issues, detailed research support, and managing logistical and communications support for issue-specific initiatives including advocacy days, workshops, seminars, and roundtable discussions. She pursues this work for clients in the health and life sciences, natural resources and infrastructure sectors.

Candice joined Global Public Affairs after having worked for the Canada West Foundation, researching and writing on a variety of public policy issues including Western Canadian economic diversification and the Alberta non-profit sector. She also had the opportunity to work overseas, developing an HIV/AIDS awareness program for high school and university-aged youth in western Ukraine.

Candice is also an active member of the Global Connections Committee, organizing internal team building opportunities and charitable giving.

She holds a BA in Political Science and Psychology from the University of Alberta, and a Master’s of Political Science from the University of Calgary.

Michael Mactaggart">Mactaggart

Senior Associate

Telephone: 416-597-3473


Michael Mactaggart is a Senior Associate with Global’s Agri-Food, Consumer and Trade practice groups. He provides sector-specific regulatory, legislative and communications advice and has extensive knowledge of Canada’s consumer product safety regime and chemicals management plan. Michael’s policy focus has involved: managing international regulatory alignment initiatives for product sectors; chemical and risk-based hazard assessments; managing new product safety regulatory standards; privacy and online behavioural advertising practices; and, international trading relations and tariff controls. Prior to joining Global, Michael was with a multinational law firm where he worked as a political and communications consultant in the firm’s global government relations and regulatory practices in Edinburgh, Scotland. Michael holds an LLB from the University of Edinburgh and BA (Hon) in Communications from Queen’s University.

Brookes Merritt">Merritt

Senior Consultant

Phone: 780-868-1013


Based in Edmonton, Brookes Merritt is a Senior Consultant and member of Global’s Western Canada government relations and communications practices. He draws on more than 15 years of experience in the political, public and private sector spheres, to support western and national clients across the prairies. Brookes serves a broad range of clients in the education, energy, municipal and cannabis portfolios, and is a member of Global’s Cannabis Connect Team. Prior to consulting, Brookes worked with the provincial government, in the Alberta legislature, and in major metropolitan newsrooms. As a Strategic Communications Advisor with the Government of Alberta, he served members of Executive Council and Cabinet, Deputy Ministers and their teams in various ministries. He has extensive crisis communications experience, having served in the Provincial Operation Centre during the Slave Lake Wildfires and the southern Alberta floods. Brookes also pioneered the provincial government’s use of social media.  Before joining government, he served as Director of Communications in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta, and as a print reporter with major dailies in Toronto and Edmonton. Brookes holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and English Literature from the University of Alberta, and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Journalism from Humber College.

David Skinner">Skinner

Senior Associate

Telephone: 613-851-5981


David Skinner is a Senior Associate with Global’s Life Sciences practice. He provides strategic, tactical and regulatory advice on matters dealing with foods, drugs (including natural health products), devices and cosmetics. Prior to joining Global, David led Consumer Health Products Canada for 34 years as President and was a Board Director for the World Self-Medication Industry for over three decades. He also served as Chairman of the Management Advisory Committee to the Health Product and Food Branch and was a member of a number of Health Canada expert committees including the Food Expert Advisory Committee. David also was a delegate to the United States Pharmacopeial Convention for 20 years. David has a BSc (Hon) in biochemistry from Carleton University with post-graduate studies in business and pharmacology. He is a certified Sommelier and wine writer, a level 3 Certified golf official and avid fly fisher.

Lauren Stone">Stone

Senior Advisor



Lauren Stone is an experienced government relations and regulatory affairs professional with expertise in the manufacturing and agri-food sectors. With a decade of experience in both the public and private sectors, Lauren manages a broad range of public affairs issues and provides leadership and technical expertise to business and industry leaders globally. Her current and past clients include working for not-for-profit organizations, industry associations, and large multinational corporations.

Prior to starting her own consulting business, Lauren managed Corporate Affairs and Sustainability for Cargill Limited, where she was responsible for government relations and business development for Cargill’s 16 diverse businesses across Western Canada. In addition, she managed Cargill’s sustainability efforts, working with its grower and end-use customers to expand market opportunities in the agri-food supply chain.

Lauren has government and political experience at both the municipal, provincial, and federal levels. She served as Policy Analyst to Premier Brian Pallister during his time in Opposition and advised elected officials of the Manitoba Legislature in the Agriculture, Economic, and Conservation portfolios.

Lauren holds an honours degree from Queen’s University in Political Science.


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