GFM Network News


Two national campaigns launched for food supply chains

It's good, one campaign says, but could the sector have done better, another asks

Ottawa — The Canadian Centre for Food Integrity is launching a new campaign to inform consumers on how the food system works. “It’s Good, Canada” will share personal stories of Canadians working across the food supply chain and provide information about farming, transportation, processing, retail and production on its website. “It’s natural for Canadians to

Editorial: COVID-19 is changing the conversation around food

On one hand, the federal government stated the obvious when it identified the food system as one of the 10 critical infrastructures supporting Canadians during the pandemic crisis. After all, who can survive without food? Nevertheless, the guidance document issued by Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair recently sent an important signal, one


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

Developing a Canadian food advantage

Farmers and the industry need to actually demonstrate that their products are produced sustainably

What would you guess is the single most important ingredient in modern food production? Good seeds? Rainfall? Fertilizer? The surprising answer is that around the world, the scarcest and most precious resource for producing food is trust. Luckily, Canada has natural advantages that could allow the people of the world to view us as their

Drought has the ability to seriously impact both crop and livestock production. According to Environment Canada, this spring on the western Prairies has been the driest since record-keeping began 68 years ago.

Editorial: Agri-resilience is farmers’ best defence for managing risk

No one understands risk preparedness and management better than an insurance company. The iconic insurance giant Lloyd’s laid out a stark scenario recently in a report about the potential for weather-related disasters to undermine the entire global food system. The 327-year-old insurance firm says it wouldn’t take much — just three catastrophic weather events hitting


Surprisingly few ‘busy bees’ make global crops grow

Conservation of wild pollinators can’t be based on economics alone

A major international study published in Nature Communications, suggests that only two per cent of wild bee species pollinate 80 per cent of bee-pollinated crops worldwide. The study is one of the largest on bee pollination to date. While agricultural development and pesticides have been shown to produce sharp declines in many wild bee populations,

CFIA flubs food failure followup

Canada’s auditor general has identified weaknesses in how the Canadian Food Inspection Agency manages recalls of contaminated foods and its followups with processors to prevent further incidents. “While illnesses were contained in the recalls we examined, I am not confident that the system will always yield similar results,” Auditor General Michael Ferguson said in his

Common-sense strategies drive sustainable agriculture

A recent Iowa conference looked at the role women 
have in creating sustainable agricultural networks

How can agriculture transform our food system, save the planet and create a just global society? In mid-November, I attended a gathering of more than 400 farmers, industry professionals and food activists all seeking to answer that question. They gathered at the 4th National Conference for Women in Sustainable Agriculture in Des Moines, Iowa organized


Teachers see a much different dynamic in their classroom compared to 25 years ago, says Alison Delf-Timmerman, Treherne-based home economics teacher in the Prairie Spirit School Division and board member of Manitoba Association of Home Economists (MAHE).

Province promises long-overdue update of home economics curriculum

Curricula used to teach classes such as family studies and foods and nutrition in 
Manitoba schools has remained unchanged since the late 1980s

Manitoba home economists are applauding a provincial plan to give the home economics curriculum a long-overdue update. The current one is 25 years old, said Alison Delf-Timmerman, a board member of the Manitoba Association of Home Economists, which has been asking the province to freshen up the curriculum. “It definitely needs updating,” she said.“We’re very

New report says improved food literacy key to a healthier life

Conference Board of Canada says too many people can’t understand nutrition labels, 
make a meal in their kitchen, or stick to a food budget to reduce waste

Improved food literacy would improve the health of Canadian adults and children, says a new report from the Conference Board of Canada. The number of books, television programs and websites dedicated to food — not to mention diets — continue to multiply, but our understanding of food isn’t necessarily getting better, says the 46-page report.