National Newswatch

Senate study of trade deal impacts on supply management extended

Nov 13 2018 — Alex Binkley — Senate should cooperate with Agriculture Canada working groups, Senator Rob Black says.   OTTAWA—A special Senate study of the impacts of three free trade deals on the country’s dairy and poultry farmers has received more time to complete its work in recognition of several developments since it was agreed to in late October. Without a […]

Statement supports potential for biotechnology in agriculture

Nov 12 2018 — Alex Binkley — Twenty-eight countries support the call for minimizing trade disruption related to biotech crops.   OTTAWA—Agrifood groups are welcoming Canada’s participation in the issuance of an international statement on the importance of agricultural applications of precision biotechnology and the need for regulatory frameworks that encourage research and minimize potential disruptions to trade. “Growers are excited about […]

Protein supercluster will reach out to the rest of Canadian agriculture once its funding contribution is complete

Nov 7 2018 — Alex Binkley — Projects ready to launch once financial deal with Ottawa is complete.   OTTAWA—Protein Industries Canada (PIC) will reach out from its Prairie base to farm groups and agriculture researchers in the rest of Canada once its financial contribution agreement with the federal government is complete, says Bob Tyler of the University of Saskatchewan. Tyler, Professor […]

Growing awareness of mental health issues reaches the farm

Nov 6 2018 — Alex Binkley — OTTAWA—It has been a long road bringing the mental health challenges in agriculture to the attention of the federal government but hearings on the topic by the Commons agriculture committee is providing a venue. Dairy farmer Andrew Campbell, a prominent internet blogger, painted the picture of what producers face in a recent presentation to the […]

Enough common ground found in Ottawa talks to lead to a second WTO reform meeting in January

Oct 29 2018 — Alex Binkley — Biggest of WTO’s many problems is in its Appellate Body.   OTTAWA–Ministers and senior officials from Canada and 12 other countries found enough common ground for reforming the World Trade Organization during two days of talks in Ottawa in late October to continue the discussions in January. However they concluded their first meeting with a […]

Protein Industries Canada still waiting for its supercluster funding

Oct 24 2018 — Alex Binkley — Industry will decide the research topics under PIC. OTTAWA—Although its creation was announced in February with considerable fanfare, Protein Industries Canada (PIC) is still waiting for finalization of the contribution agreement with the federal government to enable it to start operating. While PIC and the federal government talk of resolution in the near term, no […]

Trade, transportation and taxes key to boosting agrifood exports

Oct 12 2018 — Alex Binkley — Boosting agrifood exports lies with making sure Canada is ready to compete internationally and that means tending to the trade, transportation and taxation policies, says Phil de Kemp, Executive Director of the Barley Council of Canada. The 3Ts, as he called them, are important to making Canada globally competitive “not just for value-added industries, but […]

Senators and MPs push government on compensation for supply managed sectors

Oct 10 2018 — Alex Binkley — Plan should be in place before USMCA receives final approval.   OTTAWA—The federal government is under strong political pressure to deliver a compensation plan for dairy and poultry farmers in advance of signing the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement. Before starting its week-long Thanksgiving break, MPs from all parties backed a motion calling for a financial compensation […]

Most agrifood groups relieved the NAFTA drama is over

Oct 5 2018 — Alex Binkley — Many still wading through the fine print of the USMCA to understand its full implication.   OTTAWA—While the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) still needs to be ratified by the three countries, most Canadian farm groups are relieved that it will preserve existing agriculture commitments among them. One exception was the Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) which […]

Agrifood sector looking to keep government focused on boosting farmers and processors

Oct 3 2018 — Alex Binkley — Links with other high growth sectors are crucial. OTTAWA – Agrifood leaders want the federal government to remove roadblocks to beefing up the economic clout of their and other high-growth sectors to boost the economy. The challenge is to keep the government departments focused on clearing away obstructions to growth and competitiveness identified in the […]

Canadian farm equipment should have same write-off as in U.S.

Sep 25 2018 — Alex Binkley — Tax changes important to keeping Canadian farmers competitive. OTTAWA—Farmers should be able to write off the cost of new equipment in the year of purchase just as their American competitors can, says Howard Mains, Canadian Public Policy Advisor for the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM). The proposal echoes an earlier recommendation by the Canadian Federation […]