GFM Network News


Details on federal food surplus program expected in ‘days’

Ottawa already at work with businesses, minister says

Ottawa — Detailed plans of the federal government’s food buyback program are expected soon, according to Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau. Ottawa tabbed $50 million of its COVID-19 response funds for agriculture to buy surplus food from farmers and redistribute it to communities in need. The challenge Bibeau and her federal colleagues are faced with is […] Read more

No timeline yet set for BRM reforms

Changes put on hold along with ministers' meeting

Ottawa — Federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau has confirmed any reforms to business risk management (BRM) programs are being delayed. That confirmation came during a wide-ranging media availability Bibeau held Tuesday. In March, Tom Rosser, an assistant deputy minister at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), said the government is looking at a number of options […] Read more


Carbon pricing not having ‘significant impact’ on grain drying, Bibeau says

Conservatives, ag groups dispute government's numbers

Ottawa — Grain drying costs an average of $210 to $819 per farm in carbon taxes, according to federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau. Her department used data provided by grower groups – including Manitoba’s Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP) and the Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan (APAS) – to arrive at the figures. The federal estimate […] Read more

Pandemic may strain rural community resources, panel warns

Enthusiasm for telecommuting could later benefit rural areas, if 'digital divide' can be bridged

The COVID-19 pandemic, and Canada’s response to it, have highlighted how rural communities need different strategies than their urban counterparts to provide social services on which the public relies. The Arrell Food Institute at the University of Guelph hosted a virtual panel in May to discuss COVID-19’s social impacts, in which researchers from a variety […] Read more


COVID concerns weigh on chicken farmers, processors

Sales crashed on lack of foodservice business

Ottawa — Chicken Farmers of Canada say they’ve faced a “sharp decline” in sales as a result of a significant drop in food services, which represents roughly 40 per cent of their market. CFC chair Benoît Fontaine warned federal MPs as much during a virtual meeting of the Commons standing committee on agriculture and agri-food […] Read more

New pilot program for agri-food labour welcomed

Meat processors, greenhouse and mushroom growers, livestock producers get first crack at program

Ottawa — 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. Critics, however, contend more support is needed. “This pilot will help to ensure that farmers and processors have the much-needed skills, experience and labour […] Read more


Sollio outlines pandemic recovery plan for food sector

Support sought for automation, digitization, telecommunications

Ottawa — One of Canada’s largest agri-food companies has laid out a five-point industry recovery plan for federal politicians to consider. During a meeting Tuesday of the Commons standing committee on finance, the president of Quebec-based Sollio Co-operative Group shared plans to limit consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on the agrifood supply chain. Sollio employs […] Read more

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 […] Read more


Federal ag supports ‘too little, too late’ for mushroom growers

Timing of programs for TFWs, surplus food purchases leaves aid out of reach: CMGA

Ottawa — Members of Parliament sitting on the committee dealing with agricultural issues continue to hear concerns over the federal government’s response to COVID-19. During the Commons standing committee on agriculture and agri-food’s online meeting Wednesday, representatives of the Canadian Mushrooms Growers’ Association raised “grave concerns” over the support CMGA members have received. CEO Ryan […] Read more

Labour shortages persist, hort sector says

Horticultural Council warns sector output will drop for lack of workers, support

Ottawa — The Canadian Horticultural Council warns the federal government is using inaccurate numbers to describe how many temporary foreign workers are currently in the country. During a virtual meeting of the Commons standing committee on agriculture and agri-food, CHC president Brian Gilroy said food security continues to be threatened as a result of labour […] Read more