GFM Network News


Owner Tim with Grandson Hayden.

Local honey farm wins big in London

Faces of Ag: The Wendell family pitches their honey on quality, purity and Prairie goodness

A Manitoba-Saskatchewan honey farm has brought home high honours from the 2020 London Honey Awards. Wendell Estate Honey, which practises both conventional and organic production, entered the only Canadian honeys to receive platinum awards in the competition, appearing alongside honey from Greece, Italy, Spain and the U.K. To reach platinum status, the honey must score an

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


Manitoba Beekeepers expect reduced production

Fewer workers, interruptions to supply chains to blame

Honey production capacity is likely to drop by 10 to 20 per cent this year due to various COVID-19-related issues. “A lot of beekeepers are planning to run less bees this year based on diminished capacity for labour,” said Mark Friesen, chair of the Manitoba Beekeepers Association. Border closures and airline shutdowns related to COVID-19

“I’m hurting not having my help,” says the chair of the Manitoba Beekeepers Association.

Vegetable, honey producers still waiting on workers

Less than half of international workers expected for the season have arrived, province says

Despite efforts to bring in international workers, vegetable growers and beekeepers are still severely understaffed, according to provincial numbers. “I’m hurting not having my help,” said Mark Friesen, chair of the Manitoba Beekeepers Association. Friesen’s Canadian employee is living abroad and hasn’t been able to get back into the country, he said. As of May 11, according to numbers

Kon and Julie Paseschnikoff are excited about the pending release of their first bottling of mead this year.

First bee-to-bottle meadery to open soon in Manitoba

‘Bee Boyzz’ couple raise a glass to the sweet things in life

Manitoba’s first ‘bee-to-bottle’ meadery will launch this fall, with hopes that the sweet honey wine will bring people together. “I want people, when they’re sitting at the table, I want to make sure that Bee Boyzz brought them to the table,” said Kon Paseschnikoff. “When you make mead, you make people happy.” Kon and Julie


Beekeepers see shorter season

Beekeepers have seen their honey supply dry up sooner than usual this year. Ian Steppler, vice-chair of the Manitoba Beekeepers Association, said almost every honey producer he’s spoken to has had a shorter crop than usual this year — especially in the Interlake. Steppler, who farms near Miami, said he usually has honey to late

New federal standard to expand beer ingredient options

More variety in allowable ingredients and more requirements for declarations are now part of the federal rules on what can be called beer in Canada. The federal government on May 1 announced “modernized” beer standards under Canada’s Food and Drug Regulations (FDR) — the rules laying out the requirements to be met by a product

Manitoba honey producers are pleased they’ll be exempted from labelling standards aimed at unhealthy foods.

Health Canada relents on honey label

No alert about sugar content as the regulator recognizes honey as a sweetener

Canada’s beekeepers are expressing relief after Health Canada last week exempted honey from proposed new mandatory rules for nutritional food package labels. The regulations, if approved, will require pre-packaged products to carry warning labels if they exceed recommended thresholds for sugar, sodium and saturated fat. Food products containing more than 15 per cent of the



Chris Kirouac of Beeproject Apiaries demonstrates honey extraction at 
Red River College.

Rooftop hives educating college

Red River College continues to grow its urban apiaries with sweet results

It’s all about the honey — sort of. Red River College has expanded its urban beekeeping project in partnership with Beeproject Apiaries, adding three new rooftop beehives on the school’s Notre Dame Campus. But Beeproject founder Chris Kirouac said the expansion is about far more than honey production. “The honey is really a secondary bonus