Category: Food Safety

The case for human intervention in nature

Over the past couple of decades, those who make a profit off of the environment — farmers, ranchers, miners, and loggers — have seen a fair amount of negative publicity. As people involved in some of these industries, we know the negativity isn’t always accurate, and Bruce Vincent with Environomics Incorporated more than agrees. “The… 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 »

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 »

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 »

Is Glyphosate the Next Honeybee?

When I’m knee-deep (ankle, for most of you) in discussions about challenges in agriculture, I often ask, “What’s the next bee?” I’m used to the funny looks I get, but what I mean, once I clarify, is what is the next issue in agriculture that will be debated and perhaps regulated not necessarily on the… Read more »

CFIA’s Mixed Priorities Holding Back Canadian Agriculture

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is one of the cornerstones of food safety in Canada. Federal inspectors monitor meat and food processing plants, feed mills, and even farms. But beyond what we tend to hear in the media about inspections, the CFIA has much larger responsibilities, some of which need to be separated from… Read more »

Health Canada Approves Irradiated Fresh and Frozen Ground Beef

Recognizing irradiation as a safe and effective treatment to reduce bacteria in ground beef, Health Canada has published new regulations allowing the sale of irradiated fresh and frozen raw ground beef. The final regulations were published in Canada Gazette, Part II on February 22, and take effect immediately. Irradiation involves exposing food to low levels… Read more »

Teens Taking Chances with Food Safety — And We’re All Affected

Safety is one of the key selling points that agriculture uses to promote food produced on Canadian farms. It’s often mentioned in the same breath as freshness, wholesomeness and nutrition, mirroring what consumers say they value (besides local). Farmers take many on-farm measures to keep food safe — using sound environmental practices, and federally approved plant and animal health… Read more »

Keep an Eye on the Customer While on the Combine

A guest editorial by Cam Dahl, president of Cereals Canada. Warren Buffet, once quipped “it takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” This is something worth thinking about as we start to prepare for harvest.  Canada has a strong reputation… Read more »

Health Canada Renews Proposal to Allow Irradiation of Ground Beef

Update: Health Canada formally announced its proposal to approve irradiation of fresh and frozen ground beef on June 17th. A 75-day consultation period with Canadians will end on September 1, 2016. The proposed regulatory changes are published in the Canada Gazette, Part I, for June 18, 2016. 18 years after formally asking the Canadian government for… Read more »

Ontario Farm and Food Sectors Team Up to Tackle Sustainability

The media firestorm caused by Earls Kitchen + Bar’s  pursuit of the “Certified Humane” standard has quickly become a cautionary tale for both the farm and food industry. It’s a situation a coalition of Ontario farm organizations are hoping to avoid by working with the food and beverage sector to help clarify and streamline sustainability initiatives. Earlier… Read more »

Food Safety is More Robust with Beefed-Up Support

Guess how many people are entrusted to answer more than 1,500 queries a year from veterinarians across Canada asking case-specific, time-sensitive questions about withdrawal times for extra-label use veterinary drugs? 2 22, or 222? If you guessed two, you’re correct — and perhaps astounded. Just two veterinarians — one at the Western College of Veterinary… Read more »

Let’s Put Food Cost in Context: Canadians Get a Sweet Deal

If you believe the headlines this week, Canadians will soon not be able to afford to eat. Fruit and vegetables will be beyond an ordinary person’s capacity to pay and consumers wanting to chomp down on a piece of meat will have to order horse, bison or ostrich because beef and pork will break their… Read more »

Tattoos or GMOs? Scenes From the ‘Natural Foods’ Section

The “Natural Foods” section of any grocery store is a truly fascinating place. Here you find clusters of people intently reading fine print ingredient labels and sorting through the growing number of label claims fighting for space on product packaging. There’s a little something for everyone – from non-GMO verified, gluten-free, organic and dairy free… Read more »

TWORA — Bacon Hazards(?), Corn Harvest & More — Oct 29

So eating processed meat can cause cancer? Dr. Joe Schwarcz of McGill University, host of “The Dr. Joe Show” and author of numerous books interpreting scientific information for the general public, joins RealAg’s Kelvin Heppner on this week’s TWORA podcast to explain the World Health Organization’s report linking processed and red meats to cancer. Elsewhere, corn yields have… Read more »