GFM Network News


Comment: The Empress, The Player, and the Annoyed

Grocery leaders were summoned to a parliamentary committee recently

Top Canadian grocers testified before a parliamentary standing committee recently, to explain why all COVID-19 incentive programs were cancelled within hours. Most grocery store and distribution center employees were paid extra at the beginning of the pandemic, only to see wages now go back to pre-COVID levels. CEOs who testified were Loblaws’ Sarah Davis, Empire

Most major health authorities have concluded that consuming GMO ingredients in food does not pose either short- or long-term health risks. But most of this doesn’t matter in the eyes of the average consumer.

Comment: Gene editing a risk communication fiasco in the making

There are powerful arguments for this technology, but the industry isn’t making them

We are hearing more about gene-edited foods. It’s an intriguing concept for some but perhaps a scary one for others. We don’t know whether Canadian consumers will want to eat gene-edited food. There’s a lot of excitement in agriculture about the introduction of gene-edited food products into the Canadian food system over the next few


COVID-19 amplified two challenges restaurant operators were already facing before the pandemic.

Comment: Damnit Jim! Where’s the waiter?

Food-service establishments are poised to go ‘Star Trek’ in the wake of COVID

Canada’s first server-free restaurant opened its doors recently in Toronto. Box’d is a fully automated restaurant designed for life during a global pandemic. An interesting concept indeed, but it does raise the issue of the role humans can, and should play, in the food industry. Being aware of the new risks, we now need to

Don’t be fooled by the COVID-19 cons

Opinion | Tough times always mean more food fraud and COVID-19 will be no exception

When costs rise, most food companies adjust. Safe, fair, and sustainable business practices are always a priority in this sector. Regrettably though, it is not always the case. Several food science experts believe that an increase in food fraud is inevitable due to COVID-19. The Food Authenticity Network Advisory Board, which includes over 1,500 food

As domestic demand for milk and some other dairy products drops, so will the number of farms and processing plants.

Comment: Dairy sector faces uncertain future

The dairy industry is slowly being trampled by a wave of consumers who see it as only one of many options

There’s been a lot of talk recently about meat alternatives but dairy alternatives are also becoming more popular. And when it comes to dairy in Canada, given our quotas and high tariffs, the stakes are significantly higher. Dairy alternatives can be seen everywhere from grocery stores to coffee shops. These products are no longer confined


COVID-19 made us realize that many whose jobs are too important to shut down are also the people making the least money.

Opinion: Heroes, only for a while

The reality of low margins is seeing employers claw back wage top-ups for front-line employees

The “hero pay” is quietly fading away in grocery stores and food distribution centres. In fact, the American-based Kroger chain, among others, even asked employees to return the extra money they received but has since backed off. Quite the reversal from 10 weeks ago. It appears higher salaries in grocery stores were short lived. It

Unlike what many analysts have said in the past, the food sector has never been recession-proof. COVID-19, however, may show us that it is in fact immune to deflationary pressures.

Opinion: Better get used to higher food prices

Food inflation is vastly outstripping price advances in other products

Despite a negative inflation rate, recent StatsCan numbers are telling us that we are in for a wild ride at the grocery store. The numbers are also telling. While the general inflation rate sits at -0.2 per cent, the food inflation rate is at 3.4 per cent. In December 2019, Canada’s Food Price Report forecasted

Waste on the farm is a recurring issue and not just this year. What is different this year is the unprecedented volume.

Opinion: Canada has the food industry it deserves

Don’t blame farmers for euthanizing animals and dumping milk

Millions of litres of milk are being thrown away, more than two million eggs are eliminated from the food chain, and pigs and chickens are being euthanized. There is horror in the countryside. Throwing away good food when more than four million Canadians have lost their jobs is morally reprehensible, and farmers would be the


COVID-19 has the potential to be as disruptive to the food retail and service industries as the Green Revolution was to agriculture.

Comment: Why COVID-19 will change the food industry, forever

Like the Green Revolution changed primary agriculture, this will change food sales

COVID-19 is likely going to redefine grocery shopping in more ways than one. Convenience now has a different meaning. It’s less about saving time and more about survival and safety. Before the crisis barely anyone ordered online, and many Canadians wondered why someone would ever order food online. Many things are changing, and changing rapidly.

From oil price wars to the COVID-19 pandemic, the global economy is being hammered.

Comment: Pandemic + oil price war = uncertainty

So far agriculture commodity markets have avoided the worst of the sell-off

Most analysts agree that the oil price war is only beginning. With cheap oil abound, this will impact the entire agri-food market, from farm gate to plate. The novel coronavirus pandemic is also compounding what is already a fragile global economy. The current novel coronavirus pandemic and the oil price war is causing a massive