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Shawn Moen



Shawn Moen is a business owner, lawyer, husband and father living in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. He has worn many different hats throughout the course of his career, which underlines his inquisitive nature, his versatility, and his desire to positively impact the community which surrounds him.

Shawn was raised in the farming community of Cabri, Saskatchewan, a town of approximately 400 people located in the south-west corner of the province. His family has farmed north of Cabri since 1907, growing a combination of durum wheat, lentils, chickpeas, and various other dryland-suited crops. His father Jim is an accomplished seed grower and resilient dryland farmer and his mother Nancy is the administrative glue overseeing the financial operations of the farm.

The Moen family continues to operate the family farm amidst changing weather, market, and macro-economic conditions. Shawn is the 5th Generation of the Moen family to work this land.

In his first professional chapter, Shawn practiced law for the better part of a decade. He graduated from the University of Saskatchewan with a Bachelor of Laws (2005, Distinction) and later from Osgoode Hall Law School (York University) with a Master of Laws (2010). From that foundation, he practiced in a myriad of areas – working with two of the largest law firms in Saskatchewan in civil litigation and corporate/commercial law and serving Her Majesty the Queen as a Crown Prosecutor. Shawn earned a reputation for high ethical standards, subject-matter versatility, interest-based problem solving, and an ability to navigate high-conflict situations to find fair solutions.

In his second professional chapter, Shawn quit being a lawyer, at least in the traditional sense. He walked away from a conventional legal career in 2013 and began to pursue his long-held passion – building a business with like-minded people and values at its core. After traveling the world and exploring different business models, he opened 9 Mile Legacy Brewing with his best friend Garrett Pederson.

For over a century, the Pedersons have farmed 9 miles away from the Moen family farm. Each generation of Moens and Pedersons have found opportunities to collaborate in agribusiness. 9 Mile Legacy Brewing is only the most recent interpretation of that relationship (but arguably the most fun!).

Shawn has received several commendations and acknowledgements throughout his career, but the titles of which he is most proud are “husband” and “dad”. He and his wife Deyne happily spend all of their free time raising their two beautiful and clever children, Pearse and Maeve.

It is with gratitude that Shawn was able to include his family in his Nuffield travels and venture with them through South Australia – making memories that will last a lifetime.

Their perspectives and the importance of future generations significantly and rightly inform his perspective as a Nuffield Scholar.

Collective Resiliency and SME Agri-Processors

Small-medium enterprise (“SME”) agri-processors are a vital part of a local economy and a key piece in the ag-value growth plans of many policy makers, including the Government of Saskatchewan. A competitive SME agri-processing sector provokes a multiplicity of innovation, a diffusion of economic risk (due to the creation of anti-fragility within the sector), and spins out considerable economic growth for the surrounding community.

The vulnerability and importance of individual SME agri-processors has been exposed in recent years, with the presence of century-level disruptions (such as the COVID-19 pandemic), rising instability in global trade and food security, and heightened pressures related to interest rates, inflation, and supply chain disruption.

This report explores the concept of building collective resiliency in the agri-processing sector by embracing a collaborative ethos and designing clustering initiatives that are decluttered, positioned to foster the right type of adjacency, and are led by Collaborative Champions.

In an effort to unpack effective supports for scaling SME agri-processors, the author travelled to several premium agrifood clusters, namely South Australia, Tasmania, Japan, New Zealand, and the Pacific Northwest of the United States of America. In those places, he observed four categories of clustering initiatives: (i) Business Incubators, (ii) Designated Development Districts, (iii) Collective Retail Facilities, and (iv) Destination Marketing Initiatives. Each of these clustering initiatives have their unique opportunities and challenges, which are reviewed alongside examples observed.

The author also met with several Collaborative Champions (leaders committed to the development and success of their related ecosystems) and observed the occasional Common Good Economic Flywheel (organizations, infrastructure, and businesses that resulted from the implementation of well-designed and well-led clustering initiatives).

The author suggests several recommendations related to fostering a collaborative ethos within an ecosystem, designing clustering initiatives to be decluttered and adjacent to the intended stakeholders, investing in and developing local agri-processing leadership, and exercising patience and vision in the pursuit of Common Good Economic Flywheels.

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