Mary Robinson is the new president of the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, stepping up as the first female president in the organization’s 84-year history.  The Prince Edward Islander is joined by Keith Currie, Ontario and Chris van den Heuvel, Nova Scotia.

Broetje Orchards, one of Washington’s largest family-owned and operated apple companies, has been sold to the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan. What made this sale unique was that it also involved a community of affordable year-round and seasonal housing, recreation facilities, academic and social programming and extensive amenities for workers and their families, close to the job site.

Long-time federal agriculture minister Lawrence MacAulay was moved to the veterans affairs portfolio in a mini-cabinet shuffle March 1, replaced by Marie-Claude Bibeau, formerly minister of international development. She represents the Quebec riding of Compton-Stanstead.

Photo courtesy Wayne Riley, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Nova Scotia wines got a boost with the opening of a $1.8 million research winery at the Kentville Research and Development Centre. Federal funding will help growers and vintners hone their production techniques to take full advantage of the province’s unique soils and growing conditions. Dr. Shawna MacKinnon shows federal ag minister Lawrence MacAulay a test bottle of wine.

In the Canadian Horticultural Council’s latest video, British Columbia apple grower Nirwal Dhaliwal talks about the importance of international workers, both to running his operation, and personally, as friends and neighbours.

At the 2019 Great Ontario-Hopped Craft Beer Competition, first place went to Muddy York Brewing Co and VQH Farms. To put this win into context, brothers Curtis and Joe VanQuaethem and cousin Jared Hevenor grew their first hop crop in 2014. They are consistent competitors, twinning with another brewery for second place.

Canada’s largest grocer spent the last year rolling out its new digital services, and will continue to invest in technologies to improve customer satisfaction and company revenues. Loblaw’s e-commerce sales surpassed $0.5 billion in 2018.

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