Farmers and food processors are going to have to get used to consumers wanting to know more about their production systems and processes. | File photo

Plant protein demand unshaken by COVID-19 pandemic

The pandemic has broken, shaken and disrupted many things, but the galloping development of plant protein demand isn’t one of them. “One thing that’s stayed consistent is consumers’ obsession with protein,” Jo-Ann McArthur, a food markets expert who operates Nourish Food Marketing, said at the Manitoba Protein Summit. About 43 percent of Canadians say they’re […] Read more

Since their products are organic, it’s likely the wheat, oats and other ingredients are produced without pesticides.
 But “likely” isn’t good enough for the owners of One Degree Organic Foods, especially when it comes to glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup herbicide.
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Glyphosate-free labelling on the rise

One Degree Organic Foods, as its name suggests, makes and sells organic foods. The British Columbia company manufactures organic bread, cereal, granola and other grain-based products. Since it’s organic, it’s likely the wheat, oats and other ingredients are produced without pesticides. But “likely” isn’t good enough for the owners of One Degree Organic Foods, especially […] Read more

From 2017 to 2019, certified organic acres have been around 1.7-1.8 million.
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Organic grain production hits a plateau

Organic acres have leveled off in Western Canada. From 2017 to 2019, certified organic acres have been around 1.7-1.8 million. That’s up significantly from the early 2010s, when acreage was around 1.3 million, but the period of rapid growth in the organic sector may have stalled out. In early October, the Canadian Organic Trade Association […] Read more

From 2017-19, organic acreage in Quebec went from 178,980 in 2017 to 243,168 in 2019, a jump of 36 percent. | File photo

Quebec dominates organic growth

The number of organic farmers and acreage may be flattening in Canada, but not in Quebec. Growth is way up in Quebec, as the province continues to add growers and land that is organically certified. Data from L’Union des producteurs agricoles (UPA) shows that acreage went from 178,980 in 2017 to 243,168 in 2019, a […] Read more

The study compares the two styles of farming, with organic using more manure, labour and machinery, and conventional using more fertilizer, herbicides and insecticides. 
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Profit study on organics yields data

If organic farmers get 100 percent premiums and keep their yield drag to one-third of conventional, they tend to be more profitable than conventional growers. That’s the conclusion of a Purdue University study analyzing the profitability of typical rotations in the United States Midwest over a 10-year period. “The net return to land for the […] Read more

Alex Boersch, who farms 5,000 acres near Elie, Man., is practising organic and regenerative agriculture on his cropland. He was a featured speaker at the 2020 Prairie Organics conference, held in early March in Brandon | Robert Arnason photo

What is the difference between organics and regenerative ag?

The brands, labels and words surrounding organic and regenerative farming have become confusing. Consumers likely have many unanswered questions: is regenerative better than organic? Which one is better for the environment and human health? Is there a real difference? It has also become perplexing for growers who want to tap into the alternative food markets. […] Read more

Kjartan Poulsen keeps a close eye on his cows.  |  Submitted photo

Neighbours milk cows in organic partnership

Two Danish producers have been working together successfully for more than 20 years, and they now milk 900 cows between them

Two dairy farming neighbours in Denmark have been milking cows together for more than 20 years and say the partnership model works well for them. Kjartan Poulsen, chair of the Danish milk producers association, farms on the west coast of the Scandinavian country, 30 kilometres north of Esbjerg. Poulsen had 45 cows in 1998, when […] Read more

Regenerative agriculture is a set of practices that improves soil health and increases productivity by using cover crops, minimal tillage, permanent land cover and integrating livestock into the farm.
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Organic certification takes the next step

The Regenerative Organic Certified standard was created in the U.S. partly as a way to deal with tillage in organic farming

Regenerative Organic Certified is a mouthful and possibly a bit confusing. But the standard and its brand, an R and an O in a circle with an arrow pointing to a plant, could become a familiar logo on grocery store shelves. The Rodale Institute, an organic research group based in Pennsylvania, created the RO label […] Read more

The U.S. organic food market was worth US$45 billion in 2017, making it a lucrative opportunity for the Canadian sector.  |  REUTERS/Gary Cameron photo

Close-to-home organic marketing encouraged

One industry insider urges exporters not to ignore the United States, while another emphasizes domestic processors

Canadian organic growers should focus on the world’s largest organic market sitting right on their doorstep, says an industry spokesperson. “The U.S. is the No. 1 organic market in the world. We’re sitting right next to them and we have an excellent trade agreement and we have an equivalency, which is almost full recognition of […] Read more

The European market is significant because it has traditionally been a major destination for Canadian flax, lentils and other organic commodities. | File photo

Glyphosate residues snare organics

BRANDON — Canadians are struggling to sell organic food and grains into Europe, even though it’s the world’s second largest market. That’s because Europeans are finding trace amounts of glyphosate in organic shipments from Canada. “Many of the containers of grains that arrive in Europe are being rejected because of glyphosate contamination,” said Laura Telford, […] Read more