Golden fields of wheat blowing in the breeze and cows lazily grazing in the lush green pasture are the first things that come to most people's minds when they think of Alberta agriculture, but there's more to the provincial ag industry than grain and cattle. The Wild Rose province is home to many different types of agricultural operations such as beekeeping, sugar beets, pulses, market gardens, elk, bison, pork, chicken, lamb, turkey, dairy, eggs and much more.
The Bowman vs Monsanto Supreme Court hearing is big news in the United States and we are seeing ripple effects of it up here in Canada. Although some headlines sparked by interest groups that oppose modern agricultural production methods, including use of genetically modified (GM) crops, might suggest otherwise, this case is not about farm-saved seed.
David Okidi is a journalist in Northern Uganda and was the station manager at Mega FM, a radio station in the northern Ugandan region of Gulu. He recently joined the board of directors of Farm Radio International. Farm Radio International (FRI) helps African radio broadcasters meet the needs of local small-scale farmers and their families in rural communities. I met him for lunch.
The irregular weather conditions most of Ontario has been experiencing over the past few months have set the province up for a particularly challenging harvest season. Some of the farms we talked to were not even sure if they would be opening to the public this season because it has been such a hard year. So what does this mean for Ontario? As a result of this spring and summer's hectic weather, experts are expecting to see food prices rise by 4 per cent across Canada in 2013.
I confess: I have been wrapped up in a bit of a love affair. I have always enjoyed potatoes, but after my recent experience with our local potato festival, my love for that starchy tuber has been renewed. I don't know if it was the taste-testing on opening night or the experiences surrounding the festivities that further sparked my fever. All I know is this: from blossom to table, potatoes on P.E.I. rule the roost.
You find Saskatchewan people everywhere. We often stray from the province and find ourselves working, visiting or living our lives in other parts of Canada. When you discover one of us -- as you most certainly will -- there is a good chance that the conversation will turn, at some point, to farming. I guess people just really like to talk about farming and they believe that we're more likely than others to indulge them.
In its campaign against the Canadian Wheat Board's single desk system, the Conservative government has invoked the language of "choice," framing its intentions in terms of expanding farmers' options for marketing their produce. State intervention that forcibly undermines the CWB will accomplish exactly the opposite.