GFM Network News


New pilot program for labour welcomed

Some well-established TFWs with solid foundation in Canada will qualify

Federal officials hope a new pilot program will help stabilize ongoing labour issues in certain sectors of the agri-food value chain, while also providing citizenship to some foreign workers. But critics contend more support is needed. “This pilot will help to ensure that farmers and processors have the much-needed skills, experience and labour so we can grow our economy and improve our living

Harvest labour from temporary foreign workers is particularly important to vegetable producers and other horticultural operators, who say they can’t find enough help locally.

Manitoba’s growing trend of migrant agricultural workers

It’s not just Ontario. Manitoba farms also draw temporary foreign workers

At Connery Riverdale Farms near Portage la Prairie, the fields and staff accommodations sit empty. They’re awaiting both the 2017 growing season and about 60 temporary foreign workers who will largely handle the hand-picked harvest necessary for much vegetable production. Beth Connery is one of several Manitoba producers to draw from the Seasonal Agricultural Worker


Four-year rule for TFWs tossed out

Government is also committing to develop pathways to permanent residency for eligible applicants among TFWs

Federal officials recently announced that temporary foreign workers (TFWs) will no longer be required to leave Canada after four years’ employment. The government will also begin paving the way for more to remain in Canada permanently. The ‘cumulative duration’ or ‘four-in, four-out rule,’ was a requirement that these workers could only work here four years

Just paying Canadians more to work in the farm sector or further automating farms

Canadian farms need foreign workers

The Conference Board of Canada says the industry is facing a growing labour crunch

Canadian agriculture faces a serious roadblock to future expansion through a growing shortage of workers with the right skills, says a report from the Conference Board of Canada. The report, entitled Sowing the Seeds of Growth, says the agriculture sector is “on a seemingly unsustainable path, with an ever-growing labour gap that is likely to

Workers bone and cut beef at a meat-packing plant in Toronto.

Farm and agri-food employers hail call for foreign worker reform

A new parliamentary report backs their recommendations to fix critical shortage of workers, 
but will the federal government act on them?

Farm employers and food processors are hoping a new report will spur Ottawa to revamp its temporary foreign worker program. “There are a lot of things in the report that are very positive for ag and agri-food,” said Mark Chambers, senior production manager with Sunterra Farms and co-chair of the Agriculture and Agri-Food Labour Task


Workers bone and cut beef at a meat-packing plant in Toronto.

Temporary foreign worker program gets reprieve

Employers who have been in the program the longest are being exempted from further 
reductions in the proportion of their workforce that aren’t citizens

Meat, fruit and vegetable processors are welcoming a recent announcement that reductions in the temporary foreign workers programs have been frozen for now. Employment Minister MaryAnn Mihychuk recently said employers registered in the Temporary Foreign Worker Programs (TFWP) prior to June 2014 will be able to continue to use up to 20 per cent non-citizens