GFM Network News


Opinion: What’s the future of farm groups?

What is the future of farm organizations? How can they continue to make an impact? What do they need to change? Those were the weighty topics the Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario asked guest speaker Rene Van Acker to tackle during its annual meeting and leadership summit in late March. Van Acker is dean of

Opinion: Food policies should support small-scale producers

Ramping up food production via large-scale farming operations alone is unlikely to eradicate world hunger

Ten years ago, a spike in food prices ignited a global food crisis that compromised the ability of the world’s poorest people to access an adequate diet. Governments around the world responded by supporting the expansion of large-scale agricultural production, based on the idea that producing more food in this way translates into lower prices


Food processors spy shortcomings in CFIA regulatory plan

There are five key shortcomings that need to be fixed, food industry reps say

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency thinks it’s on the home stretch of its overhaul of food safety regulations but the food industry says there’s still work to be done. CFIA says the revamp will finally compete the implementation of the Safe Food for Canadians Act passed by the Harper government in 2012 and it’s planning

Canadian food buyers are a complex lot, according to a newly released survey of them. PHOTO: CREATIVE COMMONS/LEFTOVERTURE

Reaching consumers a complicated challenge for the agri-food sector

Consumers are tribal these days, which makes talking to them tough

Farmers and food companies striving to better connect with consumers need to prepare for dealing with a diverse audience, says the Canadian Centre for Food Integrity (CCFI). “There is no single consumer group,” the centre says in a report on its 2017 Public Trust Survey on public attitudes on food issues. “Today’s consumers are diverse,

Editorial: Food solitudes

World Food Day on Oct. 16 shed light on some confusing twists around global food security. The annual UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) event dating back to 1945 now falls five days after another big day — World Obesity Day, established by the World Obesity Foundation in 2015 to highlight the growing epidemic expected


Multiple actions needed to address world hunger

Leaders in agriculture and science gathered in Winnipeg to discuss solutions towards feeding the world’s rising population

The number of hungry people in the world could drop dramatically in our lifetimes — but achieving that goal will require action on many fronts, the former head of the United Nations World Food Program told a conference in Winnipeg last month. By 2050 the Food and Agri­culture Organization (FAO) anticipates food production must rise

Editorial: Food for thought

The federal government has suddenly taken an interest in food. It is about much more than growing agriculture and food exports, although that’s certainly one of the stated goals. It is beginning discussions toward a national food policy for the country. As Glacier FarmMedia staff writer John Greig outlined in a recent article (“Farm and

Groups across Canada’s agriculture and food sectors feel the time is right for a national food policy.

Farm and food talks bring new voices to the policy table

The national food policy development process will pull many out of their comfort zone

The meeting the Canadian Federation of Agriculture hosted in Ottawa June 5 wasn’t the usual assembly of farmers. Participants included a broad spectrum of stakeholders with an interest in food, including Food Secure Canada, the Nutrition Resource Centre of the Ontario Public Health Association, the Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security and the


Food banks plant roots for the long term

Canada’s food banks are embracing gardens and greenhouses, cooking classes and more 
to help clients achieve greater food security

Facing declining donations, an increasing number of Canadian food banks are growing their own food. Canadians may feel guilty for not giving enough but they shouldn’t. This is really about food banks adapting for the betterment of society. The Mississauga, Ont., and Surrey, B.C., food banks recently launched vertical farms using hydroponics and aquaponics. The

Gialuca Brunori  

Farmers’ markets drive food sector innovation

They offer valuable insights into changing consumer tastes and preferences

While many view farmers’ markets as an enjoyable and quaint, albeit inefficient, place to buy food, few would characterize them as cutting edge. But small-scale farmers and farmers’ markets are an important source of innovation in the food system because they are a source of direct consumer feedback, Gialuca Brunori, a professor with the department