A recently established Canadian marketing council, led by Soy 20/20, hopes to raise awareness of Canadian soy food products with several new initiatives.
These include a new website, outreach efforts to dietitians and food industry professionals, and a market research study to gauge existing awareness and attitudes towards soy foods among Canadian dietitians.
The Canadian Soy Food Marketing Council, whose growing membership includes seed researchers and developers, seed companies, farmers, grain handlers, food and ingredient processors and soy food and beverage manufacturers, was founded last fall to help position the Canadian soybean industry as a global leader in soy food innovation. Continue reading New campaign to boost soy food awareness
Biomass is a promising emerging market in Ontario and farmers can learn more about growing and making money from these purpose-grown crops on a series of upcoming regional car tours. The Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA) also showcased miscanthus (seen in the image at left) and switchgrass test plots at Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show last week.
The plots are part of a larger research project in conjunction with the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) that is evaluating the potential of biomass crops in Ontario, including establishing a business case and determining possible market opportunities. Continue reading Growing plants for energy
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 farming in Ontario. Thirteen Ontario farmers or farm families are featured in the calendar every year, nominated by the project’s sponsoring organizations. Continue reading Apple grower featured in Faces of Farming calendar
It’s finally here.
The International Federation of Agriculture Journalists (IFAJ) 2011 congress is now underway with several pre-congress events taking place in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia.
Together with my colleague Owen Roberts (@theurbancowboy), I’m co-chairing this gathering of about 260 farm journalists from 30 countries around the world, which is taking place in Ontario this week.
The last time Canada hosted this annual conference for agricultural writers was in 1967, so this is a big deal for us. Continue reading World’s farm journalists come to Canada
Ontario lavender bunches
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 and economic development leaders in the area began grappling with key questions governing the future of their region, which is a key producer of many Ontario foods, including fruits and vegetables.
How can we bring new life and new value to this farmland? How can we keep farmers profitable and sustain the rural and regional economies? At the same time, is there an opportunity to bring new products to Ontario or to grow crops here that we’re currently importing from other places around the world? Continue reading New crops in local soils raising high hopes
New food service marketing program expands markets for Ontario foods
If you build it, they will come.
That’s the thinking behind a new marketing program being used by Gordon Food Service (GFS), Ontario’s largest family-owned food service distributor – expanding and promoting their offering of Ontario food products by making it easy for their customers to identify and buy local food.
Earlier this year, the company was the recipient of a grant from the Broader Public Sector Investment Fund, a partnership between the Greenbelt Fund and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) that aims to increase the amount of Ontario foods purchased through municipal, school, university and hospital food service settings. Continue reading Local food made easy
Growing mesclun mix
As an unabashed advocate for local food and farming, I was thrilled to see that here in Guelph we have an officially recognized local food champion in our midst.
Leslie Carson, of St. Joseph’s Health Centre, was honoured in the 2011 Local Food Champions Report, part of a series of initiatives by the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation and the Greenbelt Fund to connect Ontario’s farmers and food producers with public institutions.
Schools, universities, hospitals, day-cares and other public sector facilities are large-scale buyers and consumers of food. This represents a significant market opportunity for Ontario farmers — but one that currently isn’t being filled to its potential. Continue reading Bringing local farmers and food buyers together