National Newswatch

Alberta-based pork producer says mid-sized processors need financial assistance

Jun 19 2018 — Alex Binkley — Labour shortage for rural employers is a major headache. An Alberta-based pork producer says farming operations in Canada face more obstacles and less support than in the United States and are losing ground competitively compared to international competitors. Ray Price, President of Sunterra Farms Ltd., which also has operations in Ontario, South Dakota and Iowa, […]

Consumer tastes changing rapidly in food sector

Jun 18 2018 — Alex Binkley — Canada has to become better at adding value to food products. The food business is undergoing tremendous change as consumer tastes change and Canada needs to take advantage of that trend, says Don Buckingham, President and CEO of the Canadian Agri-Food Policy Institute. “Consumer preferences and retail food markets are changing extremely fast and food […]

Food safety is top ingredient in boosting Canadian food exports

Jun 15 2018 — Alex Binkley — OTTAWA—Any way you slice it, food safety is the key issue for consumers at home and abroad when they’re buying groceries, says Jean-Charles Le Vallee, Associate Director of Food Horizons Canada (FHC), “Food safety is the first question a foreign buyer will ask,” Lavelle told the Senate agriculture committee. “If they want to import to […]

CFIA regulatory reform finally reaches the finish line

Jun 14 2018 — Alex Binkley — Changes will be phased in during the next three years. OTTAWA–Converting 14 sets of federal food safety regulations into one overall package took the better part of five years but the Canadian Food Inspection Agency finally released its rules to implement the Safe Food for Canadians Act June 13. The first changes will come into […]

Labour shortages pose obstacle to agrifood export target, Manitoba farmer says

Jun 13 2018 — Alex Binkley — The agrifood sector won’t reach Ottawa’s $75 billion export goal unless the federal government removes impediments to recruiting foreign workers, says Manitoba potato grower Keith Kuhl. The sector has identified the labour shortage issue as its No. 1 challenge since 2012, Kuhl, President and CEO of Southern Potato Company based in Winkler, told the Senate […]

MacAulay thinks farmers support the federal carbon tax

Jun 11 2018 — Alex Binkley — Farm organizations have warned tax makes Canadian producers uncompetitive. OTTAWA — Despite wide-spread farm group criticisms of the federal carbon tax, Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay has told both senators and MPs that farmers back it. “Farmers fully support it,” MacAulay told the Senate. “I can assure you the farmers are fully on our side and […]

Government ready to introduce bill to implement CPTPP

Jun 7 2018 — Alex Binkley — Champagne says it will come before Parliament starts summer recess. Long-awaited legislation to ratify Canada’s participation in the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade deal will before presented to Parliament before the summer recess this month, says Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne. “We will proceed expeditiously to ratify the agreement and will introduce legislation before […]

Farmers can’t boost production without increasing carbon emissions, farm leader warns

Jun 4 2018 — Alex Binkley — Alberta shows a way to assist producers with carbon offset program. Farmers face a tough challenge increasing food production to feed a hungry world without pumping more greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere, says Lynn Jacobson, President of the Alberta Federation of Agriculture. Agriculture practices that boost carbon storage in soils have been adopted in […]

Canada needs to be a leader in adopting new gene editing techniques

May 30 2018 — Alex Binkley — The federal government needs to enable the introduction of new gene editing techniques so small and medium-sized plant breeders can afford to bring their innovations to market, says Dave Carey, Executive-Director of the Canadian Seed Trade Association. The existing regulatory system for plant breeding “lacks clarity, service standards and is prohibitively expensive for smaller and […]

‎Government needs to act quickly on CPTPP deal, ag groups say

May 28 2018 — Alex Binkley — Treaty tabled in Parliament but no date yet for presenting legislation. OTTAWA–More than two months after signing it, International Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne has tabled the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership treaty in Parliament. Agrifood and other groups welcomed that step but the big question for them remains when the legislation to approve Canada’s participation […]

Vets back key recommendations on combatting AMR

May 15 2018 — Alex Binkley — Controlling use of medicines in animals linked to protecting effectiveness of human drugs. OTTAWA—A Commons Health Committee report on combatting antimicrobial resistance (AMR) to preserve the continued effectiveness of human medicines contains useful recommendations and recognizes steps already taken by farm groups and vets, says the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA). It also sets out […]

Bayer making public scientific data behind its products

May 10 2018 — Alex Binkley — Bayer Crop Science is making the scientific data behind the development of its agricultural products available to the public to try to build public trust in the science behind them, says Paul Thiel, the company’s Vice-President, Product Development & Regulatory Science. It’s also making a more concerted effort to explain the importance of its products […]