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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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Young farmers talk about raising veal

Tom and Paul Oudshoorn are veal farmers in Ontario

Tom and Paul Oudshoorn are veal farmers in OntarioThey’re young, they’re educated and they’re passionate about their future as veal farmers in Ontario.

Tom Oudshoorn and his brother Paul raise about 2,000 grain-fed veal calves on their home farm in the Auburn area near Goderich and on a second farm near Kincardine, where Paul now lives. Continue reading Young farmers talk about raising veal

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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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Local processor wins award for allergen-free meat products

Stemmler Boys on Truck

Brothers Kevin (squatting), Terry and Shawn Stemmler of Stemmler Meats and Cheese in Heidelberg, ON.

They built their business on the power of local long before it was popular and their allergen-free meat products are a life-line to many food allergy sufferers.

These efforts have won Waterloo Region’s Stemmler Meats and Cheese a Premier’s Award for Innovation and they’ve also just been named a finalist for a prestigious innovation award from the Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber of Commerce. Continue reading Local processor wins award for allergen-free meat products

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