fruits and vegetables

Local food love reflected in popularity of food media tour

Ontario just marked its second annual Local Food Week. Although there were a multitude of events going on across the province, including a Foodland Ontario-run Twitter party and a one-day farmers’ market at Queen’s Park, the highlight for me was a Farm & Food Care Ontario media tour in the Ottawa area. It was a […]

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New Ontario “Asparagus Trail” launched

I await the coming of asparagus season the way many people anticipate Christmas. Yes, I absolutely love the fresh, crisp flavour of newly harvested asparagus spears, but it’s about more than just their yummy goodness. Or the fact that they’re good for you and loaded with iron and vitamin K. To me, it also signals […]

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Healthy school snack program expands

A popular school snack program that has been in place in Northern Ontario schools for the past eight years has been expanded. As a result of increased funding from the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care, approximately 36,000 students in 191 schools are now receiving two servings a week of fruits and vegetables […]

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Meet an Ontario fruit farmer

Family tradition is an important part of Ontario’s farming culture. Innovation and new technology, however, are what helps keep that family tradition going for the future generations. Fruit grower Phil Tregunno is proud of being the fourth generation of his family to farm in the Niagara Region – and with his two sons and a […]

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Ontarians showing apple love online

Facing a bumper crop after last year’s weather disaster, the Ontario Apple Growers (OAG) knew they needed to Ontarians to eat more apples than ever before. To do so, they needed more consumer awareness, so the organization turned to social media to reach out. A series of contests hosted on their Facebook page over the […]

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Community & sustainability at heart of local blueberry farm

This is the week we mark Earth Day, on Tuesday to be exact. Many of us give a bit more thought to the environment this week or do a few extra things to mark this day. And those are all good things. Farmers, in my opinion, have a special relationship with the environment, a stronger […]

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Ontario farm meeting rising demand for locally grown edamame

Demand for edamame, a type of soybean popular in Asia as a snack and vegetable dish, is growing in North America. Most edamame sold here, however, is imported – something that a local Ontario farm family is working hard to change. MacKellar Farms, near the southwestern Ontario town of Alvinston, is Canada’s only commercial supplier […]

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Pilot school program uses Ontario produce to raise funds, promote healthy eating

It’s a new initiative that’s a win for farmers, students and healthy eating. Fresh from the Farm is a pilot program being launched this fall in select school boards that will let students fundraise for their schools by selling Ontario fruits and vegetables. Modeled after a similar program in Manitoba, the Ontario initiative is a […]

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Inside an Ontario vegetable greenhouse

Ontario greenhouse vegetables – specifically cucumbers, tomatoes and peppers – are one of our largest local produce crops and one that we an enjoy almost all year round. Most of the vegetable greenhouses are centered in the Leamington and Niagara areas. Earlier this spring I was able to tour one of these operations Flamborough area […]

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Innovations protect fruit crops against weather, predator damage

Newcastle – Damaging weather and predators can mean the difference between a good year and a bad one on the farm. No one knows that better than Charles Stevens, who grows apples and blueberries on his farm near Newcastle, east of Toronto. He’s turned to technology and innovation to protect his apples against hail and […]

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Young farmers reach out to consumers

A group of young farmers has taken to social media to share with Canadians how they produce food and two fruit and vegetable growers are right in the thick of it. Erin McLean, whose family runs a pick-your-own berry operation near Peterborough and serves farmers’ markets and local grocers with fresh fruits and vegetables, and […]

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Producing wine and cranberries in cottage country

Winemaking and farming aren’t two things most people associate with Muskoka. Yet fruit wines and an iconic fall holiday berry are helping farmer Murray Johnston and his wife Wendy Hogarth put their family business on the map. The couple, with help from their four sons, run Johnston’s Cranberry Marsh and Muskoka Lakes Winery near Bala, […]

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Apple grower featured in Faces of Farming calendar

She was the winner of the Golden Apple Award for industry service and leadership at the 2011 OFVGA annual meeting. Now, in 2012, Cathy McKay will also be a calendar model. She is the first-ever apple grower to be featured in the popular Faces of Farming calendar, produced annually to promote awareness of food and […]

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New crops in local soils raising high hopes

Lavender, hazelnuts and sweet potatoes are not crops we commonly associate with this province. Yet they’re starting to emerge in Ontario’s south coast area, the fertile sand plains in Norfolk, Brant, Elgin, Middlesex and Oxford counties where tobacco used to reign supreme. As the decline of the tobacco industry continued over the last decade, agricultural […]

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Apples – organic or conventional?

The debate over organic versus conventional agriculture is an ongoing one in the world of food production. For one Ontario apple grower, though, that debate ended a decade ago after some firsthand research into the issue. But first, a little bit of background.

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