Latest articles


Editorial: CAPI report focuses on quality of export growth

There was heady excitement last year when the federal government’s Advisory Council on Economic Growth, led by Dominic Barton, identified agriculture as one of six sectors that could lead this country’s economy over the next decade. The prevailing response from within the sector was that ‘finally,’ agriculture is being acknowledged for the economic powerhouse it […] Read more


Editorial: Reimagining leftovers

Sometimes deciding what to feed the family after a long, arduous day juggling daycare, jobs and traffic seems overwhelmingly complicated. If the May 31 press release from the U.S.-based Tyson Innovation Lab is any indication, deciding what we’re going to put into our mouths next is about to get more cluttered with new products, new […] Read more



Editorial: Gluten-free bacon?

It was enough to spoil my breakfast. As I opened a package of bacon to cook while camping on the holiday weekend, I learned from the label that it was “gluten free.” Gluten-free bacon? I was confused. Since when does bacon, which comes from animals, contain gluten, which is one of the components of the […] Read more


Bridging the digital divide is no easy task

Rural residents are still living life in the slow digital lane

Anyone who dares suggest country life moves at a slower pace would be laughed out of the room in most rural communities, especially at this time of year as the spring-planting frenzy kicks into high gear. But there’s one sector of the rural economy and of rural living that few would deny moves at a […] Read more



Editorial: Why all the fuss?

Canada’s dairy system has figured prominently in the rhetorical storm surrounding NAFTA renegotiations. The Canadian government has so far remained steadfastly opposed to any significant change. Two documents that surfaced recently help explain why. The first, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s “Regulatory Economic Impact Analysis of the Final Decision to Establish a California Federal Milk […] Read more


Worth a look: Annual production estimates a valuable resource

It can help you calculate your own risk and rewards, but only if you use it

At first glance, the annual Guidelines for Estimating Crop Production Costs released every January looks like good bedtime reading for insomniacs. But sort through the numbers and analysis, and the story that emerges is full of mystery and intrigue. These production estimates are designed to give farmers a reference for determining which crops make the […] Read more



Food policy recommendations reflect diverse interests

The report to Parliament will either cement the solitudes or set the stage for finding common ground

The 21 recommendations toward developing this country’s first national food policy delivered to Parliament recently establish one thing fairly succinctly. It’s complicated. However, from the first recommendation (making adequate nutrition as a basic human right) to the last (calling for a national food policy advisory body with a wildly diverse range of stakeholders), the committee’s […] Read more


Selling environmental benefits

New data management tools could help position Canadian agriculture as a sustainable supplier in the global marketplace

As momentum behind the tools and concepts of precision agriculture continues to grow, one of the most exciting — but least talked about — opportunities is their ability to improve farming’s environmental footprint. That’s a shame, because that’s one attribute of this latest revolution in agriculture that is most likely to resonate with an increasingly […] Read more



Explosion of innovation coming to the farm

The chief technology officer for Monsanto Co. says the interface between data and biology will be a powerful tool

There is an explosion of innovation coming to the farm as a new age of sensors and satellite imagery intersects with the world’s oldest industry, the executive vice-president and chief technology office for Monsanto Co. says. Robb Fraley, who was in Calgary recently to address the GrowCanada Conference, said in an interview that although agriculture […] Read more


Consumers are demanding companies prove their sustainability commitment

The rapidly changing retail food sector wants to know what you do on your farm

The $118-billion retail food sector in Canada is becoming increasingly fragmented but it still shares one thing in common: a commitment to trust and transparency, a retail food expert told delegates at the recent GrowCanada conference. That has repercussions that trace through the value chain all the way to the farm, John F.T. Scott said. […] Read more