Category: Food

Demand for rye whisky and new hybrids create opportunity for growers

When it comes to whisky, Canada is a little different. Whisky ingredients, brewing, distilling and aging rules are steeped in tradition in many countries, but Canadian whisky makers like Windsor, Ontario-based Hiram Walker & Sons Limited have very few restrictions. Canada is the most flexible and innovative whisky production market in the world, explains Hiram… Read more »

Food Fear: A call for action

This editorial was written by Brenna Mahoney, director of communications and stakeholder relations for Cereals Canada. As I scrolled through my Facebook this morning, I came across a treasure trove of misinformation and fearmongering. Some of my friends writing in the comments how they agree that our food system is a big conspiracy and we… Read more »

Canola Eat Well celebrates Canada’s 150th birthday

“Canola is a great Canadian product. We are celebrating it!” This year marks Canada’s 150th anniversary, and at Manitoba’s CanolaPalooza, it was echoed throughout the day that canola has been an important part of Canadian agricultural history. “You are celebrating Canadian food and farmers when you buy canola products, and that’s 43,000 farmers across Canada,”… Read more »

If anyone can make online grocery sales work, it’s Amazon

Last last week Amazon made a 13.7 billion USD bid for organic upscale retailer Whole Foods. The announcement sent competing grocer stocks reeling with the potential that Amazon-type competition could create major struggles for Kroger, Walmart and Costco in the long term. Financial market commentator Jim Cramer, stated on CNBC that “this is a game changer…..you cannot… Read more »

Ontario fruit and vegetable growers say minimum wage hike would devastate industry

The Ontario Liberal government’s plan to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2019 is drawing fire from the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers’ Association (OFVGA). In late May, the provincial government announced intentions to increase the minimum wage from the current $11.40 per hour rate. That’s a significant blow for an industry… Read more »

Fight for GMOs hits the big screen in ‘Food Evolution’

It’s easier to scare people than reassure them. That’s how environmental activist Mark Lynas frames the debate around the safety of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). GMOs have their supporters and their detractors, all fighting for or against the technology, and in the middle is a very confused and distrusting public. That’s the narrative director Scott… Read more »

Five reasons you should complete the national food policy survey

Producers need to make their voices heard now, as Ottawa proceeds with public consultations about the first-of-its-kind national food policy. Ottawa says a food policy is a way to address issues related to the production, processing, distribution, and consumption of food. It says such a policy “will set a long-term vision for the health, environmental,… Read more »

Ontario’s new minimum wage could weigh heavy on agri-food industry

Ontario’s minimum wage is set to climb to $15 per hour by 2019 and that could have a significant impact on agriculture in the province. Ontario Federation of Agriculture president Keith Currie says labour intensive sectors such as horticulture and greenhouse operations will likely suffer the greatest impact from the Liberal government’s announcement this week… Read more »

Details to be determined on national food policy, says Ag Minister MacAulay

The federal government is moving toward establishing a national food policy that will revolve around four “pillars,” but details on what it will look like beyond that have yet to be determined, according to Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay. The minister launched consultations, including an online survey, on establishing a national food policy in a speech… Read more »

Should politicians talk agriculture on the urban campaign trail?

City dwellers may not have much connection to the farm these days but there’s growing evidence that they value the agri-food industry’s ability to produce high-quality, safe food and create jobs. That’s the conclusion of an opinion poll commissioned by Grassroots Public Affairs. The survey of 676 residents in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) indicates… Read more »

Career opportunities are agriculture’s ticket back into the classroom

Consumers need to know where their food comes from. Why don’t we have more agriculture in the classroom? Those are recurring conversation themes and questions AgScape executive director Colleen Smith encounters every day. They’re challenges the Ontario agriculture industry has been grappling with since the Ag In The Classroom program was launched 25 years ago…. Read more »

Ag minister launches consultations on creating a national food policy

After years of discussion about the idea, the federal government has launched consultations on creating a national food policy. “Developing this food policy is an exciting opportunity for Canadians to have their say about how government can help address those opportunities and challenges that exist in our food system,” said Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay, announcing the consultations… Read more »

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 »