GFM Network News


File photo of a small greenhouse operation in Quebec. (ManonAllard/E+/Getty Images)

Increased federal support for TFWs welcomed

Ottawa — The Canadian Horticultural Council says Monday’s federal announcement offering $50 million to help cover the extra costs associated with importing foreign workers this year is welcomed support. “We are finding that there are a lot of increased costs this year with COVID-19 and bringing in the employees, so having the extra money will

Every year, Canada requires around 60,000 international workers for the agricultural sector.

Time running short to bring in international workers

Farms and organizations are putting together safety plans to meet federal guidelines, but most are still waiting on workers

Nearly two weeks after securing permission for temporary foreign workers to enter the country, agriculture groups were still hammering out the details of how they’d get here. “We’re trying to make sure that everyone is as safe as possible,” said Beth Connery, labour chair of the Canadian Horticultural Council. On March 16, Prime Minister Justin


A foreign laborer tends to plants in a greenhouse.

Travel restrictions complicate temporary foreign labor

COVID-19: Organizations scrambled to work out if—and how—much-needed seasonal laborers would get into Canada and onto their farms

Travel restrictions and mixed messaging had some Manitoban producers “freaking out” after it seemed temporary foreign workers might not be let into the country. On March 16, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that foreign nationals from all countries except the U.S. would be temporarily barred from entering Canada in response to the evolving threat of


Blooming rapeseed field at sunset

More debate yet to come on neonics

Health Canada has satisfied its concern with three neonicotinoid insecticides and pollinator risk, but a decision to protect aquatic insects may yet take those chemistries off the table

Health Canada’s April decisions on three neonicotinoid insecticides won’t change much for growers this year — but it also won’t be the last word on the subject. Producers will still have access to most imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiamethoxam uses following the April 11 ruling. In 2016, the federal government announced plans to phase out imidacloprid


“PMRA’s re-evaluation decision confirms that in the vast majority of cases, neonics can be used effectively by farmers without unnecessary risk to pollinators.” – Pierre Petelle, CropLife Canada

No new major neonic restrictions: Health Canada

Existing restrictions remain, but they won’t be expanded for the foreseeable future

No new changes are coming to the use of neonicotinoids in Canada. There will be no new significant restrictions beyond those announced last year, Health Canada said April 10 in its final decision on its review of clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiameth­oxam. The department said it will proceed with cancelling some uses of the products and

Feds fund potato push

The investment is aimed at increasing Canada’s potato exports

The federal government is putting up $274,000 in Growing Forward 2 funding to expand markets for Canadian potatoes. The announcement came last month when member of Parliament Dan Vandal spoke to the 95th annual general meeting of the Canadian Horticulture Council in Winnipeg. This project, funded under the AgriMarketing Program, provides the Canadian Horticultural Council

Wireworm are set to take a bite out of potato fields and can be tough to control.

Manitoba potato growers brace for wireworm issue

The loss of Lindane then Thimet has resulted in growing and booming wireworm populations across Canada

A budding wireworm problem for Prairie potato growers is the result of losing two key chemical control products. According to Bob Vernon, a research scientist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Agassiz, B.C., that lack of control options makes it a question of when, not if, the problem shows up. First the organophochlorine pesticide Lindane


Canadian fruit and vegetable growers have been cut off from access to PACA, the U.S. government’s payment protection system, since October 2014.

Liberals pressed on PACA pledge for produce growers

The NDP tables a motion to set up a payment protection system by Sept. 30

The federal opposition New Democrats have cherry-picked a Liberal election promise to fruit and vegetable growers seeking insurance against U.S. and Canadian buyers who dodge their bills. Tracey Ramsey, the NDP’s international trade critic and MP for the southwestern Ontario riding of Essex, on March 8 tabled a motion in the Commons for Canada to

Fruits and veggies deserve more respect

Fruits and veggies deserve more respect

Prairie Fare: Mango Salsa

As I checked our family’s garden the other day, I noted the potential bumper crop of tomatoes coming our way. I recalled a scene from the season we built a raised garden bed. That year, I noticed a few partially eaten tomatoes on the grass outside the raised bed. Eating tomatoes right out of the