GFM Network News


China offers the sorts of opportunities that Canada’s ag and food sector should capitalize on.

Be bold, go big, and sell more to China, urges ambassador

Leverage the Canada brand, target consumers directly, and get to know the many Chinas, says Dominic Barton

Reading Time: 4 minutes China’s pandemic buying spree has ag commodity prices soaring — but as canola growers (and others) know, Beijing can quickly turn hostile. But the ag sector here needs to be bold and aim to grow its ag and agri-food exports to China, says Canada’s ambassador to the country. “Even when things were really rough and […] Read more

Incoming WTO director-general Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala takes part in an online meeting before speaking during an interview with Reuters in Potomac, Maryland on Feb. 15, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

Nigeria’s Okonjo-Iweala makes history as new head of WTO

Geneva-based body leaderless for six months; Trump paralyzed some of WTO's functions

Geneva/Washington | Reuters — Three months after the Trump administration rejected her, former Nigerian finance minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala received unanimous backing on Monday to become the first woman and first African director-general of the World Trade Organization. A self-declared “doer” with a track record of taking on seemingly intractable problems, Okonjo-Iweala will have her work […] Read more


(Photo courtesy Canada Beef Inc.)

Strike a better deal with U.K. on beef, says CCA

Reading Time: < 1 minute The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association is hailing the interim trade deal with the U.K., but says a new long-term agreement needs to “resolve trade barriers” when it comes to the trade in beef between the two countries. “A glaring inequity that remains to be resolved is that Canadian beef producers face far more hurdles to export […] Read more

China drives surge in pork exports

China drives surge in pork exports

Reading Time: < 1 minute Thanks to surging sales to China, pork exports were up by more than 18 per cent in volume (nearly 21 per cent by value) from January to September, says provincial livestock market analyst Jason Wood. Total year-to-date pork exports were $3.75 billion (1.1 million tonnes), with China accounting for close to half of that — […] Read more


Germany is one country where a targeted growth strategy could pay dividends, says a new report from Farm Credit Canada. On the food side, Canada’s “stellar reputation” for food safety and quality provides an opening to sell more processed pork and beef products while the EU’s move away from palm oil gives canola oil opportunities in the biofuel market. (Pictured is a meat shop in Regensburg)

Seize the opportunity to grow Canadian food exports

Canada can be ‘a leading supplier of food’ in the world if it strategically targets the right markets

Reading Time: 4 minutes Canada will need to grow and diversify its export markets if it hopes to reach its export targets by 2025, says a new report from Farm Credit Canada. “As an industry, we have quite ambitious targets when it comes to exports,” said J.P. Gervais, FCC’s chief agricultural economist. “The federal government put a $75-billion target […] Read more

Cherilyn Jolly-Nagel. (GGC video screengrab)

Grain Growers of Canada lobby Parliament Hill

Agriculture can help restart Canada's economy and the federal government help by addressing some issues, group says

Agriculture can help revitalize Canada’s post-COVID economy, but the federal government should clear the track for it. That means updating regulations to encourage technological innovation, improving market access for agricultural exports and recognizing farm practices that help the environment, Grain Growers of Canada (GGC) says. The organization, which represents 15 regional, provincial and national grain […] Read more


There are several short-term reasons why things are going well right now, but Alberta Wheat chair Todd Hames says behind those factors is Canada’s reputation as a reliable supplier of high-quality grain. Supplied

Savour it: The stars have aligned for crop producers

Demand, prices and shipping are all strong, and that’s not something that happens very often

Reading Time: 3 minutes There’s a huge good news story coming out of 2020 for crop producers. Or rather, three of them — demand is up, prices are good, and shipping is going like gangbusters. “Total volumes are up about 23 per cent year over year,” said Brennan Turner, CEO of online grain-marketing company FarmLead. “We moved about 8.34 […] Read more

Doug Sawyer, pictured with daughter Brittany and son Braden, had high hopes for the trade deal with Europe. But while pursuing what could be a large, premium market is worthwhile, Sawyer now wonders if Europe officials are negotiating in good faith.

The Canada-EU trade deal: High hopes replaced by frustration

Instead of billions in extra trade, agreement bogged down in fruitless talks on ‘technical’ trade barriers

Reading Time: 6 minutes CETA is short for the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, but for many it’s become a term for frustration and disappointment. “When CETA was signed and ratified three years ago, there were lots of promises,” said Doug Sawyer, a cow-calf producer from Pine Lake and co-chair of the foreign trade committee for the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. […] Read more


Alberta grain growers have travelled the world on New Crop Missions, but the pandemic will see Canada’s grain sector reach out to potential buyers virtually for the foreseeable future.

New-crop missions grounded, but grain sector has adapted

Pandemic provides the push to create a long-discussed online hub that aims to reach more grain buyers

Reading Time: 3 minutes Team Canada won’t be heading out overseas on a new-crop mission this year. Instead, they’ve got a new way to market wheat to their international consumers. “We used to go to about 17 countries within a span of about six and a half weeks. That is not really possible this year,” said Dean Dias, chief […] Read more

A scrappy White House administration with no reverence for the hard-fought gains in global rules-based trading over the past three decades has had the entire agricultural sector on edge.

Opinion: The bar has been set lower in this new era of global trade

‘No loss’ is the definition of winning as the new version of NAFTA comes into effect

Reading Time: 3 minutes While many Canadians were enjoying backyard barbecues this summer after months of being isolated from family and friends, the country quietly embarked on a new era of trade with two of its largest trading partners. The U.S.-Mexico-Canada-Agreement (USMCA), referred to as the CUSMA in Canadian documents, came into force to replace the North American Free […] Read more