National Newswatch

Farming blamed for elevated levels of another greenhouse gas

Oct 28 2020 — Alex Binkley — Science magazine calls for reduced use of nitrogen fertilizers.   Ottawa—Farm use of fertilizers to boost crop production is once again getting the wrap for worsening the planet’s greenhouse gas problems without recognizing that the 4-R Program developed by Fertilizer Canada presents a solution. An article in ZME Science, an online publication that generally places […]

Trade issues would have been a challenge even without Covid

Oct 27 2020 — Alex Binkley — CAPI sets out a game plan for making the most of the chaos.   Ottawa—Rules-based international trade was in trouble before COVID-19 lead to national policies and subsidies that amplified the chaos, says the Canadian Agri-Food Policy Institute (CAPI). To cope with the situation, Canada needs to build up its sustainability credentials and find like-minded […]

Farm groups unite to remind governments of needed BRM changes

Oct 23 2020 — Alex Binkley — Call came as Commons agriculture committee worked on a report urging BRM upgrades.   OTTAWA—It’s time for the federal and agriculture ministers to stop dithering on long-overdue improvements to the Business Risk Management (BRM) programs, particularly AgriStability, says the AGgrowth Coalition of major farm organizations. The ministers need “to come to a consensus and finally […]

Ontario group adds its voice to agriculture’s concerns with federal fuel regs

Oct 21 2020 — Alex Binkley — Proposed rules could disrupt farm expansion especially in Northern Ontario.   Ottawa—Draft federal clean fuel regulations pose a threat to future crop production and farmland expansion, especially in Northern Ontario, says Keith Currie, President of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA). Not only would the regulations for a Clean Fuel Standard (CFS) limit what crops […]

Green groups urge governments to support sustainable agriculture

Oct 19 2020 — Alex Binkley — The next federal budget should endorse the concept.   Ottawa—The push from within the agrifood community for sustainable farming and food production has won the backing of a broad coalition of environment groups. The 25-member Green Budget Coalition issued a sweeping set of proposals for the federal government to follow in implementing promises made in the […]

Canada needs to recast its approval process for new food plants

Oct 14 2020 — Alex Binkley — Canadian plant breeders need a modernized federal approval system for new varieties that is science-based, proportionate to risk, supports innovation and is predictable, says Jennifer Hubert, Director of Plant Biotechnology with CropLife Canada. The current system is intended to ensure the health and safety of consumers and encourage innovation. “But the devil is in the […]

Bibeau announces Canada Brand changes to expand its reach

Oct 7 2020 — Alex Binkley — Move will help companies market domestic products around the world.   Ottawa—The Canada Brand platform will receive a makeover to enable it to perform more effectively in today’s social media systems and digital platforms, Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau and Trade Minister Mary Ng have announced. The Canada Brand was launched in 2006 and provides a […]

Infrastructure Bank steps up on two rural priorities

Oct 6 2020 — Alex Binkley — Details on where funding to be spent expected in coming months.   Ottawa—Improved rural broadband internet service and agriculture irrigation projects will be receiving major financial support from the Canada Infrastructure Bank in the coming months. It will invest $2 billion into expanding high-speed broadband, and $1.5 billion to irrigate an additional 700,000 acres across […]

Government repledges supply management compensation in Throne Speech

Oct 2 2020 — Alex Binkley — First promised in April 2019, poultry and egg producers still waiting for payment.   Ottawa—Buried in the government’s Sept. 24 policy speech was the repeat of a promise to compensate supply-managed farmers and processors for losses caused by three trade deals. “The government will also ensure that those in Canada’s supply managed sectors receive full […]

CFA and CAPI urge Ottawa to act on farm sector needs

Sep 29 2020 — Alex Binkley — GFO and other Eastern groups say their members can’t compete with U.S. subsidies.   Ottawa—Good words in the Throne Speech are no substitute for action on the many challenges facing the agrifood sector and governments need to act before it’s too late for many farmers. That’s the message from the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, Grain […]

Beef industry working to ensure pasture practices enhance biodiversity

Sep 23 2020 — Alex Binkley — Alberta study claims livestock grazing around the world harms wildlife.   Ottawa—With 44 million acres of pastureland in use, Canadian beef farmers have put a lot of work into ensuring their grazing livestock aren’t harming the environment, says the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. Close partnerships with many wildlife, nature and conservation organizations ensures that livestock production […]

The European trade deal has been a disappointment for agrifood

Sep 22 2020 — Alex Binkley — Trade minister, former premiers agree agrifood shortchanged in trade deal.   Ottawa-While the Canada-Europe free trade deal is usually described in glowing terms for its benefits to the Canadian economy, it hasn’t worked out for the country’s farmers, says Dan Darling, President of the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance (CAFTA). The deal reached its third anniversary […]

Federal carbon offset program leaves out key agriculture initiative

Sep 16 2020 — Alex Binkley — The 4R program has been shown to reduce emissions.   Ottawa-A proposed carbon offset program developed by Environment Canada makes no mention of a fertilizer management initiative that’s been credited with reducing carbon emissions from farms. The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Protocol is recognized in both Canada and the United States for its success in reducing […]