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

After a period of sluggish growth and a decline in the number of producers in the early 2010s, organic farming is expanding in Western Canada. | Screencap via prairieorganicgrain.org

Prairie farmers grow more organic crops

Organic is back. After a period of sluggish growth and a decline in the number of producers in the early 2010s, organic farming is expanding in Western Canada. Certified organic acres on the Prairies reached 1.824 million in 2017, up 29 percent from 1.4 million acres in 2015. The number of organic producers hit 1,605 […] Read more

After a period of sluggish growth and a decline in the number of producers in the early 2010s, organic farming is expanding in Western Canada. | Screencap via prairieorganicgrain.org

Organic acres on the rise

Organic is back. After a period of sluggish growth and a decline in the number of producers in the early 2010s, organic farming is expanding in Western Canada. Certified organic acres on the Prairies reached 1.824 million in 2017, up 29 percent from 1.4 million acres in 2015. The number of organic producers hit 1,605 […] Read more


Eric Johnson of the University of Saskatchewan’s agriculture college speaking at the Organic Connections Conference and Trade Show held in Saskatoon Nov. 1-3.
 | Twitter/@OrganicConnect1 photo

Organic weed war uses ‘many little hammers’

Researchers identify three mechanical control practices for organic farming, but none of them work well on their own

Organic crop researchers are now focused on developing a larger, more diverse tool kit to control weeds. “The research has kind of evolved to the point where we’ve looked at things in isolation and now we’re looking at integrating a number of different factors,” Eric Johnson of the University of Saskatchewan’s agriculture college said during […] Read more

Mike Kozlowski and Mackenzie Bouteiller, foreground, work on weed control in the garden. The weekly work schedule once harvest begins in late June andearly July is weeding on Mondays and Fridays and harvesting on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. | Maria Johnson photo

Organic gardener cuts out the middleman

On the Farm Alberta producer’s journey to the field began with a simple question: ‘where do you get your food?’

RED DEER — An innocent question from a subsistence farmer in Kenya in the mid 2000s affected Mike Kozlowski in ways he never imagined. He spent months in the east African country through a Canada Millennium Foundation Scholarship project where he helped identify agricultural-related community needs. The question and the conversation that followed initiated serious […] Read more


Jacob Marfo, manager and research co-ordinator with the Mackenzie Applied Research Association, looks at how his organic oat trials are doing in Fort Vermilion, Alta.  |  Jeremy Simes photo

Northern organic farmers get help

Fort Vermilion, Alta. — A new organic program in northern Alberta hopes to help solve farmers’ woes when it comes to growing in the region. The recently launched Mackenize County Organic Success Program will see the hiring of an agronomist to help with issues relating to weeds, soil fertility, crop rotations, finances and marketing. As […] Read more

The number of organic crop producers on the Prairies hit 1,442 in 2016, up from a recent low of 1,151 in 2013.
 | Screencap via www.scribd.com

Organic farms getting bigger on the Prairies

The number of organic crop producers on the Prairies hit 1,442 in 2016, up from a recent low of 1,151 in 2013. That’s positive news for the organic sector, which lost producers on the Prairies from 2010-13, when prices for conventional grains and oilseeds were particularly strong. The number of organic acres also increased, going […] Read more

New Alberta organic dairy entrants will be loaned extra quota to get them started in the system.  |  File photo

Organic dairy product demand sparks Alberta program

The marketing board that oversees Alberta dairy production has launched a new program to grow the organic sector, as demand for such products continues to increase. The program, spurred by Alberta Milk, aims to see two new organic dairy farmers join the supply managed system. Organic milk sales have increased by about 2.4 per cent […] Read more


“Whenever there is that differential (in price between organic and conventional) there is that potential for fraud,” said Byron Hamm, certification manager with Pro-Cert Organic in Saskatoon. | WP photo illustration

Organic industry cracks down on fraud

The United States imported about 300,000 tonnes of organic corn from Turkey last year. The figure is surprising because farmers in Turkey grow a tiny amount of organic corn. “There’s only, reportedly, 2,000 hectares (5,000 acres) of organic corn grown in Turkey,” said Eric Jackson, chief executive officer of Pipeline Foods, a Minneapolis company that […] Read more

In April, Sunrise Foods challenged the rejection of the cracked corn shipment. The company filed a lawsuit against the USDA and U.S. Customs, asking a U.S. district court for a temporary restraining order. | Screencap via sunrisefoods.ca

Organic company wrestles with U.S. customs over cracked corn

A Saskatoon company is dealing with a 25,000 tonne headache. Sunrise Foods, one of the largest wholesalers of organic feed and food ingredients in the world, has a shipment of 25,000 tonnes of organic corn currently at sea. That’s because United States Customs and Border Protection rejected the shipment at a California port in March. […] Read more