The divide between farmers and environmental NGOs is widening. So is the gap in understanding between northern and rural Ontario, the region’s natural resource industries and some environmental groups. Efforts are underway to promote more harmony between all sides. But it will take a while to turn this ship around. In Ontario, grain farmers are… Read More

A good story can be told about potato production in Canada. It rose more than 4.5 per cent in 2015 over the previous year. Half of the new production came from Manitoba, with about another third coming from Quebec. That production increase didn’t hurt McCain Foods Canada’s decision in January to expand its Carberry, Manitoba… Read More

The final push is on this week to connect with farmers across Canada, for the first-ever national mental wellness survey of those who produce our food. Back when this initiative started in the fall, survey coordinator Prof. Andria Jones-Bitton of the University of Guelph, said she hoped to have 1,000 farmers involved in the survey… Read More

Brew pubs and craft breweries need points of uniqueness. Sure, they offer local beer, however they define it. But what’s different about their lager, ale, stout or whatever, than that of their competitors? Well, in the Year of the Pulses, a couple of Canadian brewers, one from the east and one from the west, are… Read More

Universities are sometimes said to emphasize theory over practice. But when it comes to farm safety, agricultural diploma program students at the University of Manitoba get both. When these students reconvene for class at the University of Manitoba this week, farm safety will be on their minds and in their curriculum. Thanks to advances being… Read More

It looks like the New Year is going to bring even more focus on animal welfare. In a year-end interview, University of Guelph researcher Michael von Massow said he was “stunned” when his research this fall revealed there’s been a 300 per cent increase in just two years in the group of Canadians he describes… Read More

Dairy — milk, in particular — is facing big challenges from the likes of pop companies and juice manufacturers. They’ve marketed their way into the lunch buckets of Canadian children over the years, and taken hold. A study underway now by University of Guelph researchers has found milk is not considered cool by adolescents, one… Read More

Among the agriculture stories consumers need to hear are those that show the industry has known all along they were there. It has not just suddenly discovered them. Farmers have anticipated society’s needs and have long taken measures to keep food safe and affordable. This imperative is growing in importance, as popular food chains seek… Read More

I’m not surprised that Alberta farmers railed against Bill 6. Usually, the status quo is easier to live with than change, particularly imposed change. And in the case of Bill 6, change would occur in everything from farm culture to the bottom line. It still might. But hopefully, not to the same extent. In response… Read More

Women are looking for new opportunities in agriculture – in production, leadership and business, among them. When this search extends beyond Canada’s borders, the commodities may change. But the principles are the same, including equality, participation and recognition. Take Peru, for example, where coffee is a very popular commodity. Coffee production there everywhere else is… Read More

The eight experts who comprise the province’s Agri-Food Growth Steering Committee, tasked last fall with developing recommendations to address Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne’s jobs-and-exports challenge, have spoken. And what they had to say in a two-page letter full of advice to agriculture and agri-food minister Jeff Leal could have a profound effect on the agri-food… Read More

After significant market research in China, Japan, Mexico and right here at home, Canada Beef, a national advocacy group, announced that it has determined what consumers, importers and processors like most about Canadian beef — it’s Canadian. Now, that may seem obvious. Maybe even simple. But what it’s Canadian really means is a huge question, with… Read More

Keeping livestock healthy in ways that consumers endorse isn’t getting any easier for producers or veterinarians, neither of whom particularly need another challenge right now. New campaigns by fast-food outlets to stop using meat from animals that have been treated with antibiotics are raising all kinds of questions in consumers’ minds about modern production practices…. Read More

Farmers’ healthy appetite for information gives agricultural media everywhere a vital role in the agri-food sector. Knowledge mobilization, technology translation and transfer, extension or whatever you want to call the flow of information from a source to a user depends significantly on skilled, trusted media. Feedback from users is an important part of the cycle… Read More

Those who oppose agricultural subsidies have long held New Zealand out as the ultimate success story. According to their line of reasoning, if the Kiwis can farm without subsidies, so can we. In fact, before and during the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks, New Zealand’s iconic status with its admirers was so elevated that to… Read More


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