Sixty-five per cent of consumers say their behaviours and preferences for shopping and services like grocery have changed.

Shifting consumer expectations could be a challenge post-COVID

The pandemic hit the fast-forward button on trends already in progress

Reading Time: 3 minutes The pandemic ushered in technological, social and economic change for most Canadians, but did it change trends? “(It’s) simply an acceleration of trends we were already seeing, it’s not going to fundamentally transform our world,” said David Coletto, Abacus Data CEO at the annual meeting of Farm and Food Care Ontario. “But, perhaps, fast-forward us […] Read more

COVID-19 PPE supplies challenge farms

COVID-19 PPE supplies challenge farms

OFA survey shows some farmers concerned about PPE availability

Reading Time: 2 minutes A recent Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) survey showed some farmers and farm businesses are struggling to acquire personal protective equipment (PPE) to meet COVID-19 safety protocols.  The OFA’s small-scale Agricultural Personal Protective Equipment Survey (APPES) of 498 members showed 16 per cent of respondents were concerned a lack of PPE would see them closing […] Read more

Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland arrives to a news conference prior to delivering the budget in the House of Commons in Ottawa on April 19, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Blair Gable)

Federal budget to offer direct payments to farmers for carbon pricing

Other new 'green growth' funding also on deck

Reading Time: 3 minutes The federal government’s 2021 budget offers up new spending to support farmers combatting climate change through targeted investments — and, in some cases, direct payments. Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland released the budget Monday, showing the majority of new spending will take place over three years and be largely focused on “green growth.” “Budget 2021 announces […] Read more

CME August 2021 feeder cattle with Bollinger (20,2) bands. (Barchart)

U.S. livestock: Cattle, hogs down on demand concerns

'We got a little bit ahead of ourselves'

Reading Time: < 1 minute Chicago | Reuters — CME Group hog futures fell sharply for the second day in a row on Friday, with the most-active June contract sinking 2.9 per cent to its lowest since March 23. Cattle futures also were weaker, with the June live cattle contract notching its seventh straight losing session. The market was correcting […] Read more

Pandemic-driven demand for materials is making farm projects expensive.

Input costs escalate

Pandemic-driven demand for materials make farm projects expensive

Reading Time: 4 minutes From fertilizer to steel, agricultural input costs are rising. The only certainty, say some analysts, is the great number of factors in play make forecasting prices a challenge.  Why it matters: Farmers need to play far ahead in purchasing inputs and planning purchases and expansion, and volatile, rapidly rising prices can make for more expensive […] Read more


Set-aside funded for Quebec hog, cattle, big game producers

Feds, province pledge $21.8 million AgriRecovery plan

Reading Time: 2 minutes Farmers tending feeder hogs, fed cattle and big game animals such as elk, red deer, bison and wild boar in Quebec can expect $21.8 million in AgriRecovery to compensate for COVID-19’s drag on the province’s slaughter capacity. Federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau and her Quebec counterpart Andre Lamontagne on Thursday announced their governments’ respective 60-40 […] Read more

A worker at Cargill’s London, Ont. chicken plant demonstrates the deboning process for a 2014 McDonald’s video on the meat used to make McNuggets. (McDonald’s Canada video screengrab via YouTube)

Cargill shuts Ontario chicken plant against COVID

Other packers being sought to take birds

Reading Time: 3 minutes Agrifood firm Cargill is seeking slaughter space for Ontario chickens at other processors after temporarily closing its London poultry packing plant Tuesday against an outbreak of COVID-19 among workers. The company said Tuesday it was “taking this step out of an abundance of caution as our local workforce deals with the community-wide impacts of COVID-19.” […] Read more

Cargill’s London facility processes 100,000 chickens daily.

COVID outbreak closes Cargill chicken processing plant

Eighty-two workers test positive, all employees encouraged to get tested

Reading Time: 2 minutes The Cargill chicken processing facility in London abruptly ceased production on April 13 after 82 workers tested positive for COVID-19.  The number of COVID-19 positives at the Cuddy Boulevard facility marks a steep increase from the nine reported by the Middlesex-London Health Unit the week before.  “Our focus is on continuing to keep our employees […] Read more

Human travel and lack of vigilance help spread viruses.

Preventing human failings in COVID and African swine fever

Viruses have different superpowers they use to spread among animals and people

Reading Time: 4 minutes With the spread of both COVID-19 and African swine fever (ASF), humans can be their own worst enemies. That message was delivered by South West Ontario Veterinary Services practitioner Dr. George Charbonneau during the recent virtual edition of the 2021 London Farm Show. Why it matters: The North American swine sector is on high alert […] Read more

Canadians have been reaching for local food during the pandemic, but marketing of more than Canadian produce would be welcome, says a Nourish Food Marketing report.

Opportunities in a new food relationship

Not every pandemic-induced food trend will stick, but buying Canadian is one that should

Reading Time: 3 minutes The pace of change in Canada’s food system might have accelerated under pandemic pressure, but will alterations to our personal relationship to food really stick?  In some ways yes, but likely not everything.  According to a meta-analysis of purchasing trends grocers, farmers, and other purveyors will have to wrangle with a combination of new, lasting […] Read more