National Newswatch

Agriculture ministers gather in Quebec City while watching the Canada-EU summit in Montreal

Jul 18 2019 — Alex Binkley — Farm groups remind the agriculture ministers of the actions they’ve called for in recent months.   Ottawa—As agriculture ministers gathered in Quebec City for their annual mid-summer policy meeting, they were keeping an eye on the two-day Canada-EU summit up the St. Lawrence River in Montreal. Representatives of the AgGrowth Coalition travelled to Quebec City […]

CFIA to beef up food fraud prevention program

Jul 17 2019 — Alex Binkley — Adulterated imported honey discovery shows what can be done, agriculture minister says.   Ottawa—The Canadian Food Inspection Agency will receive $24.4 million to expand its efforts to prevent the marketing of fraudulent food products, Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau has announced. The funding will enable CFIA to revamp its existing food fraud program to conduct additional […]

Senate agriculture committee creates a scenario for boosting the agrifood sector

Jul 16 2019 — Alex Binkley — Support innovation and cut needless regulations among its proposals.     Ottawa—The Senate agriculture committee has pulled together a wide range of ideas into nine comprehensive recommendations to guide the federal government in boosting the export of value-added food products. In a report entitled Made in Canada: Growing Canada’s value-added food sector, the committee calls […]

The Power of Declining Expectations

Jul 16 2019 — Glen Pearson — Like it or not, and whether it is indeed an accurate assessment, the terms “populism” and “class war” are increasingly creeping into our political language the closer we get to this fall’s federal election.  Numerous pundits have spent the past year assuring Canadians that nothing like Brexit or the Trump phenomenon would happen here in […]

Pilot project to ease worker shortages in the agrifood sector to be launched

Jul 15 2019 — Alex Binkley — Meat processors and mushroom producers are at the front of the line.   Ottawa—After years of presentations to governments on the negative economic repercussions of worker shortages, the agrifood sector is finally in line for some badly-needed assistance. Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen said that up to 2,750 workers and their families could be admitted under […]

Canadian farm support well below global average

Jul 11 2019 — Alex Binkley — OECD remains critical of supply management.   Ottawa—Canadian farmers receive less government support than producers in many other countries, says the latest report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. However, it remains critical of supply management in the dairy and poultry sector. With the introduction of business risk management programs and shift of […]

Meeting rising global food demand faces growing production threats, says OECD

Jul 10 2019 — Alex Binkley — Cereals expected to be increasingly in demand.   Ottawa—Farmers around the world will face many challenges to meeting growing global food demand in the coming decade, says a joint report from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development and the Food and Agriculture Organization. While agricultural productivity growth should stay ahead of the projected 15 […]

Worker shortages continue to hamper Canadian farms

Jul 9 2019 — Alex Binkley — Almost half of farmers can’t find all the labour they need.   Ottawa – Almost half of Canadian farms can’t find all the workers they need and a third of them receive no applications from Canadians when they do post jobs, says the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC). As a result of the labour […]

Open Letter to Premiers

Jul 9 2019 — Perrin Beatty — On behalf of the two hundred thousand businesses represented by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce network, I urge you to take significant and meaningful action on advancing the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA). As you are no doubt aware, the Council of the Federation was created in 2003 “to work collaboratively to strengthen the Canadian […]

Better internet service key to tackling what’s holding rural Canada back

Jul 8 2019 — Alex Binkley — Report highlights obstacles to overcome to achieve rural prosperity.   Ottawa—While it has been said many times before, the federal Rural Development Strategy (RDS) makes a strong case for bringing the level of internet access urban Canada enjoys to the country. Announced by Rural Development Minister Bernadette Jordan, the strategy said, “Access to reliable, high-speed […]

Canada strengthens disease zoning protocol with Europe

Jul 4 2019 — Alex Binkley — Will apply if ASF is found in Europe or Canada.   Ottawa—Canada and the European Union have strengthened a livestock disease zoning agreement to allow for normal trade in pork products from unaffected areas if African Swine Fever (ASF) is found in either jurisdiction. The move is line with a zoning agreement Canada has with […]

Food industry groups looking for ways to reduce plastic use

Jul 3 2019 — Alex Binkley — Processors and the fresh produce sector working toward federal 2021 deadline.   Ottawa—Two food processor associations have launched efforts to reduce their member’s use of plastic in packaging in line with a federal government objective of banning single use plastics by 2021. Food & Consumer Products of Canada (FCPC) has endorsed the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s […]

When Compromise Becomes Dishonour

Jul 2 2019 — Glen Pearson — During my former parliamentary tenure (2006-2011), there were those rare occasions when we would commiserate as MPs from different parties about just how caustic political life was becoming.  There were inevitably expressed concerns about how long the public would tolerate the kind of mean partisanship displayed in the House and on the news.  We knew […]