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Happy cows don’t make headlines

Schaus Land & Cattle Company feedlot near Alliston ON Another undercover video of farm animal abuse – this time on a BC dairy farm – means another black eye for farmers in the media.

Those of us in farming know these terrible incidents are by far the exception and not the norm – but the many millions who see or read the bad news stories don’t.

What never makes headlines are the thousands of Canadian farmers who do the right things every day when it comes to raising their livestock.

I had the chance to visit one such farmer recently (whose barn is pictured above) as part of the Farm & Food Care annual media tour for food writers, bloggers and culinary professionals. Continue reading Happy cows don’t make headlines

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Buying beef directly from farmers

buying local beef

buying local beefThe strength of the local food movement and the potential of an untapped urban market keen to buy high quality beef direct from farmers are behind a new marketing initiative underway by Beef Farmers of Ontario.

Farm to City Marketing is based on the popular community-supported agriculture (CSA) model that has been successful for vegetable producers, said BFO Policy Advisor Katie Dettman in a presentation at the annual general meeting of the Agricultural Adaptation Council last December. Continue reading Buying beef directly from farmers

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Argentina no longer a global beef powerhouse

This is the final article in a short series about agriculture in Argentina, a country I had a chance to visit as part of the International Federation of Agriculture Journalists conference in 2013.

A gaucho or cowboy on horseback in ArgentinaArgentina has traditionally been amongst the world’s leading beef producing nations.

Much of its proud rural history is based on cattle, ranching and gauchos – the legendary cowboys of the South American Pampas region who spend their lives herding cattle on the vast grasslands.

But the country is far from the global beef powerhouse it used to be, as delegates to the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists’ congress held in Argentina learned in early September. Continue reading Argentina no longer a global beef powerhouse

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Social media changing Canadian beef promotions

Ask if it is Canadian Beef

BIC_logoMore beef check-off dollars are going into social media than ever before – and it’s proven to be a very effective strategy for boosting consumer awareness and driving loyalty to Canadian beef.

That’s according to Heather Travis, Canada Beef’s Director of Public Relations and Marketing Communications, who’s been a long time champion of social media and has made the organization a leader amongst Canadian farm groups when it comes to using new media tools. Continue reading Social media changing Canadian beef promotions

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Beef farmers raise 70K for local cardiac rehab centre

Picton – A desire to give back to a community that supported them in their time of need led to a fundraising campaign by local beef farmers that has raised $70,000 for a cardiac rehabilitation program in Picton, Ontario.

The donation by the Prince Edward County Cattlemen’s Association was instrumental in helping to establish an outpatient rehabilitation program with the Prince Edward Family Health Team – only the fourth such program in eastern Ontario – for people recovering from heart disease or cardiac surgery.

Previously, patients had to travel as far as Kingston or Ottawa to access treatment. Continue reading Beef farmers raise 70K for local cardiac rehab centre

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