Latest articles


Comment: Our garden’s last stand

There was no food waste on the rural farm of my youth

In the unseasonable heat of mid-September, the yard’s many black walnut trees began shedding their heavy fruit. Now, a month on, the stately trees are bare of nuts and most of their leaves weeks earlier than any year I can remember. Does that suggest an early winter? A long one? Time will tell. All I […] Read more


Telecommunication tower with beautiful sky background

Comment: CRTC scales back internet ambitions for remote areas

Being realistic about rural internet speeds is acceptable but the danger is ‘for now’ will become ‘forever’

When it comes to internet service, regardless how it is delivered, the one thing that matters most is speed – or so most Kitsilano condo dwellers would tell you. Because if you live in, say, Lunenberg County or Stony Rapids or Cambridge Bay, the thing that matters most about internet service is that you have […] Read more



plastic trash on a beach

Comment: All you can eat, including the packaging?

A strong case for taste and food safety will have to be made before consumers will be willing to eat their garbage

Within a year, single-use plastics and excess packaging have become public enemy No. 1. Everyone is talking about how our lives are overrun by too much plastic. A recent Greenpeace-led audit looked at waterways waste and companies involved. Much of the plastic trash cleaned up from Canadian shorelines this fall was traceable to five companies: […] Read more


pea seedlings

Comment: Expect the unexpected in push to build plant protein sector

Demand will rise, but new pulse supercluster will have to be nimble to seize opportunity

Pardon the pun, but the agricultural industry’s pulse was palpably high in the downtown hotel ballroom earlier this month as 300 leaders gathered to officially launch the Protein Industries Canada supercluster. The ‘Thought Leaders Summit’ was designed to get stakeholders in the plant-based protein value chain singing from the same song sheet, albeit in four-part […] Read more



Chicken Farm

Celebrating modern agriculture

The farm of today is nothing like the ‘good old days’ and thank goodness for that

Most farmers are reluctant to talk about modern agriculture. Our own industry advertisements promote the image of a farm with a faded red barn and a few chickens running about in a pastoral setting. That is not modern agriculture and we need to stop letting agriculture be portrayed this way. It is not hard to […] Read more


soybean on white background

Comment: Winning the trade war?

Will the U.S.-China trade war end up worthwhile for U.S. soybeans?

China’s absence from the U.S. soybean market has put tremendous pressure on both soybean growers and Chicago-traded soybean futures over the last several months. But the United States’ new trade pact with Mexico and Canada may offer some hope for a similar outcome with major U.S. trade partner China. The United States and Canada reached […] Read more



Portrait of Holstein cow

Opinion: How the USMCA democratized supply management

We’re 20 years behind the rest of the world’s industrialized countries and need to have a national conversation

Nobody should be surprised. Concessions on dairy access during the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) negotiations were foreseeable. Americans went from wanting to “tweak” the deal last year to getting significant concessions from Canada. It is a deal we needed of course, but one must wonder how our supply management system will fare moving forward. And specifically, how our […] Read more


Comment: The blockchain party

Grocers are finally climbing aboard the blockchain initiative and consumers should rejoice

Walmart, the largest retailer in the world, recently notified its leafy green suppliers that they will need to use blockchain by the end of next year. Walmart is banking on its relationship with IBM to put pressure on the entire sector to comply with what consumers want from the food industry: more transparency. But others […] Read more



The United States Capitol Building

Comment: Tell me if you’ve heard this before

Because agriculture policy-makers can’t remember history, farmers may be doomed to repeat it

Truisms don’t need to be completely true to be a truism. For example, “If you live long enough, you’ll see everything” doesn’t mean you will see everything if you live a long life. You may see a great deal, but it’s highly unlikely you’ll see “everything.” Simone de Beauvoir, a French novelist and existentialist, turned […] Read more


milk and dairy cattle

Comment: Authors of their own misfortune

Canada’s dairy industry is about to lay in a bed of its own making

Remember the early days of the NAFTA renegotiations, when all Donald Trump wanted to do was “tweak” the agreement as far as Canada was concerned? That seems like a century ago now. A lot has happened to poison the well between then and now, including the U.S. president’s over-the-top reaction to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s […] Read more