Category: Organic

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 »

Are Western Canadian Farmers Missing the Boat on Organics?

An op-ed column by Brenda Tjaden Lepp Over the past couple of years, I have been developing and promoting new marketing tools to help farmers prove the concept of sustainability to consumers, and to use that to their advantage in pricing. Most recently, my efforts have targeted helping those transitioning into organic. I have always… Read more »

Dear Environment Canada: Please Use Canadian Stats

You’ve likely seen Environment Canada’s Tweet celebrating #WorldFoodDay and thanking farmers…well, some farmers. If not, here it is: Today is #WorldFoodDay. Thanks Farmers! Let’s help keep the planet healthy and productive. Tips here: https://t.co/D4WBHIjjU8 — Environment Canada (@environmentca) October 16, 2016 Seems nice enough, yeah? Well, then you follow the link. It doesn’t lead to… Read more »

Wallbridge Named Thompsons Limited Organic Specialist

Thompsons Limited has announced that Rob Wallbridge will join the company as Organic Specialist. Wallbridge grew up on conventional dairy and cash crop farms in Central and Eastern Ontario. He comes to Thompsons with more than 15 years of experience in organic crop certification, production and marketing. Wallbridge is a registered Certified Crop Advisor (CCA-ON)… Read more »

Why Don’t You Grow Organic?

The Organic Council of Ontario (OCO) wants to understand why the province can’t seem to attract farmers and processors who want to fill the growing consumer demand for organic food. The organic market has seen tremendous growth in recent years. Ontario has more than $1 billion dollars in sales alone, about 30% of total Canadian… Read more »

Canada’s Largest Mushroom Business Bought by Fyffes

Leamington-based mushroom producer Highline Produce has been sold to Irish fruit and fresh produce company Fyffes for a reported C$145 million. Founded in 1961, Highline is the largest mushroom business in Canada and largest organic mushroom producer in the world, marketing around 58 million pounds of mushrooms annually from four production facilities in Leamington, Kingsville… Read more »

Tips for Hosting Your Own Farm Day

Last month, I stopped in for the annual Organic Alberta Conference in Olds to hear what’s new in the world of organics. I was a little later than I intended, but happened to sneak into the first concurrent session of the day just in time to hear Blake Hall of Prairie Gold Meats addressing an intrigued… Read more »

European Union Votes to Expand Canada-EU Organic Equivalency Arrangement

The European Union has voted to expand the scope of the Canada-EU Organic Equivalency Arrangement. That means processed products that are certified organic and contain imported agreements will no longer require double certification. It also means EU and Canadian organic wines will be considered equivalent. “Allowing goods to flow more easily between Canada and Europe… Read more »

Organic Sector Offering Transition Support as Grain Demand Exceeds Supply

According to the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements, in 2011 the global market for organic products reached a value nearing $US 63 billion. In Canada, the organic agriculture sector has been growing since the early 1980s, with now over 1.7M acres of farmed land certified organic. And though the overall number of farms in… Read more »

Observing Canada’s National Organic Week — A Retrospective

Canada’s National Organic Week kicked off on Saturday, September19. It’s a week to celebrate organic agriculture, organized and presented by Canada Organic Trade Association, Canadian Organic Growers and Canadian Health Food Association. Whose celebrating #OrganicWeek today? Hit reply and tell us how! — Organic Week (@organicweek) September 21, 2015 “Organic Week is the largest annual celebration… Read more »

Chosen to Compete — Organic Breeding Shows Value in Understanding Selection Environment

Knowing the context in which a plant variety was selected is critical in understanding how it should be managed in the field. As an example, in the video above, Martin Entz of the University of Manitoba explains what happens when cereal crop varieties developed in a conventional breeding system are grown in an organic system, or vice… Read more »

7 Reasons to Compost Manure and Other Waste On Farms

There’s potential for much more composting in North American farming, say researchers at the University of Manitoba. “Turning waste into gold” was the theme for the annual field day at the U of M’s Glenlea Research Farm last week. Mario Tenuta, soil ecologist at the University of Manitoba, describes the value of farm-scale composting of manure,… Read more »

Five of the 21st Century’s Coolest Food Initiatives

In the last few years, we have seen incredible innovations in food and agriculture, often inspired by environmental improvements, the push for more local food and increased global food security. Urban agriculture is cropping up in cities, insect farms are crawling out of the wood work, and cafes are repurposing would-be waste. In an effort to… Read more »

Organic Meadow Dairy Co-op Enters Creditor Protection

Ontario’s Organic Meadow Co-operative Inc. has filed for creditor protection in order to complete a “restructuring of its operations,” the company announced today in a press release. Organic Meadow is Canada’s oldest co-operative of organic farmers, organized in 1989, and represents over 100 family farms across Ontario. The company’s goal is to emerge from the… Read more »