Category: Food

Should ‘vertical’ factory farms get a free pass?

In a recent Fast Company magazine article there was a feature on the benefits of using technology to produce food. The article praised the efficiency gains made by implementing the latest in what technology could provide. The farm in the article is located in San Francisco. That’s right, it’s a vertical farm. The company’s name… Read more »

Neither side wins with ‘Pig Trial’ verdict

The recent court case of Anita Krajnc, informally called the “Pig Trial,” has come to a close, and the farming community leaves the courtroom with disappointment. Sort of. Rather than a one-sided legal rout for animal rights activism, the verdict delivered in this criminal mischief case actually supports Ontario farmers in a number of ways. Let’s… Read more »

Mandatory GM labeling bill defeated in House of Commons

A private member’s bill that would have required a GM label to sell “any food that is genetically modified” was defeated in the House of Commons on Wednesday. Quebec NDP MP Pierre-Luc Dusseault introduced the draft legislation (read the Bill C-291 here), with NDP agriculture critic Ruth Ellen Brosseau speaking in favour of it. As… Read more »

Growing agri-food industry shaping Guelph’s OAC programs

The agri-food industry needs more highly qualified people, and the University of Guelph’s Ontario Agricultural College (OAC) is looking for ways to help meet the demand. Producing more graduates is both a challenge and tremendous opportunity, says OAC dean Dr. Rene Van Acker. A study released five years ago indicated that there were three jobs… Read more »

Alberta Wheat Commission launches consumer marketing campaign

The Alberta Wheat Commission (AWC) has launched a new consumer-focused marketing strategy, titled “Life’s Simple Ingredients.” The main goal of this project is to help consumers understand where their food comes from, and to shed a positive light on wheat so they can feel good about what they are eating. Victoria Russell, interim communications manager for… Read more »

Italy says it’s seeking EU approval for COOL on pasta

Italy’s government says it is moving ahead with a plan to implement mandatory country of origin labeling requirements on pasta, potentially impacting the competitiveness of Canadian durum wheat in one of its largest markets. The Italian government notified the European Commission about its intentions this week, according to the country’s agriculture minister, Maurizio Martina. (As of… Read more »

CBC runs a story smearing University of Saskatchewan professor for alleged ties to Monsanto

As universities encourage researchers to collaborate with industry, activists are looking to discredit academics they declare to be compromised.  This week, an American anti-GMO activist organization, U.S. Right to Know, convinced someone at CBC that University of Saskatchewan professor Dr. Peter Phillips has been compromised by Monsanto. The attack is similar to others carried out by… Read more »

Increased grocery store competition leads to food deflation in March

If you asked consumers about whether grocery bills are going up or down, they would likely say up. According to market analyst Kevin Grier and Statistics Canada, the data suggests otherwise. Food deflation continued again in March, with declines across the store in staples, meat, and consumer packaged goods. According to Statistics Canada, the Consumer Price… Read more »

Domino’s Pizza says it won’t be pushed around by animal activists

Farmers have gotten used to food companies bowing to the desires and demands of animal activists. It seems rare for a mainstream food company to stand behind the methods and practices of farmers and ranchers across the United States and Canada. Outside of McDonald’s Canada, the list seems quite short at times (and, yes, they’re moving… Read more »

Krajnc acquitted of criminal mischief charge in pig transport trial

Despite the defence creating over-the-top, headline-grabbing statements in court and using arguments not based on science, Justice David Harris has acquitted activist Anita Krajnc on the charge of criminal mischief related to interfering with hogs while in transit. Justice Harris says activists can protest laws, but they have to do that “within the confines of the laws that… Read more »

Presenting on the future of food and agriculture technology to Bill Gates

Who is the most memorable person that you have had a chance to interact with? How about one of the wealthiest, most successful business people of a generation? This week in Seattle, Washington, Rob Saik of Trimble Ag Software (Agri-Trend) was invited to a symposium to present on the future of ag technology at the headquarters of… Read more »

Putting the squeeze on celebrity influence

How powerful is popular culture? It has tremendous influence on much of our daily lives, impacting everything from food choices and diets, to exercise, and what products we buy. Many of these choices our those we make to help our families lead healthy lives. Dr. Timothy Caulfield would like to like to see governments, regulators,… Read more »

Door Opens for Easier On-Farm Business Development in Ontario

With 98 per cent of businesses in Canada employing less than 100 people, it really is true that, cliché or not, small business is the backbone of the country. In Ontario, agriculture and food already employs some 800,000 people. Its presence is clear. But once businesses are up and running, they then have to grow…. Read more »

Creating a ‘Silicon Valley’ for Food in Ontario

Around the globe, agriculture and food systems produce about 2,850 calories per person per day. That’s enough to feed the world explains University of Guelph professor Evan Fraser, but unfortunately we still have 800 million people who are undernourished. Even more perplexing is the fact that we have 2 billion people who struggle with being… Read more »

Canada is the Largest Importer Of U.S. Processed Food, Doubling Second-Place Mexico

Trade between the NAFTA nations has become mainstream news on a daily basis.  Trade relations between Canada and the United States seems to be getting cooler as the battle over lumber, energy, and dairy heats up. The Canadian and American agriculture economies are very linked and, as highlighted by Kevin Grier in his March edition of… Read more »