Senior policy thinkers at Agri-Food Economics Systems warn that future worker absenteeism due to COVID-19 illness could dent the agrifood supply chain. Think of truckers, logistics providers, anyone on the front lines of producing and moving food.
The Produce Marketing Association, based in Newark, Delaware, convened members from 21 countries to discuss the industry’s response to COVID-19. The virtual town hall revealed that bananas, potatoes, carrots and onions are in the highest demand.
The U.S. embassy has suspended processing of new H-2A worker applications in Mexico City and its offices across the country. The U.S. Apple Association, one of the founders of the Agriculture Workforce Coalition, is asking for a reversal of that position.
The European Food Safety Authority is closely monitoring the global outbreak of coronavirus disease. Ironically, its headquarters are based in Parma, in the north of Italy, part of the lockdown by the Italian government.
Nutrients and micro-nutrients have a huge role to play in keeping potato plants healthy through the season. A strong plant is in a better position to ward off diseases and pests, and stand up to extreme weather conditions.
Seasonal agricultural workers such as Jamaican Willy Green are crucial to the 2020 growing season. The federal government is providing exemptions to the travel ban however logistics are still to be announced.
Dr. Mary Ruth McDonald has mentored dozens of students as professor of plant agriculture, University of Guelph. Equally at home in the field, she’s working with Master’s student Alexandra Dacey, documenting carrot weevil found in carrot trials at the Muck Crops Research Station in Bradford, Ontario.
Seedless watermelon is only one of the specialties carried at Howe Family Farm Market near Aylmer, Ontario. Kevin Howe says ground cherries and canary melons also pique the interest of consumers. The on-farm market has been so successful that the family has opened another location south of London Ontario.
Bill George Jr. and his son Will have tasted the promise of Icewine exports to China. With geopolitical tensions in 2019, the risks of diversifying into markets abroad have been amplified. It’s too early to know if the recent U.S-China deal will help or hinder.
Fourth-generation grower Kyle Horlings is questioning the way things have always been done. Since 2015, he’s taken about 10 acres of carrots and onions out of production every year for restorative cover plantings. His experiments near King, Ontario garnered him the Healthy Soil Award from the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority in November.
Oleen Smethurst is known for her quest for flavour. As assistant vice-president, general merchandise manager for produce, Costco Canada, she jets all over the world from Berlin to Bogotá, meeting with growers and seed suppliers. While touring southern Ontario in late August 2019, she visited Martin’s Family Fruit Farm near Waterloo, Ontario.
Farm Credit Canada has received an enhancement to its capital base that will allow for an additional $5 billion in lending capacity. Federal ag minister Marie-Claude Bibeau announced March 23 that the infusion will help with spring planting.
Collaborative. Untiring. Tenacious. These are some of the adjectives that Brian Gilroy, president, Canadian Horticultural Council used to describe four award winners at the 98thannual general meeting in Ottawa.
United Fresh 2019 offers a glimpse into the future with a TEC Zone featuring 24 top ag tech start-up companies. One of those is Montreal-based Motorleaf, which uses artificial intelligence to automate harvest yield estimates and disease scouting in tomato and pepper greenhouses.
Hazel Technologies Inc., based in Salinas, California, has developed a small, biodegradable and food-safe insert to extend the shelf life of a carton of fresh fruit. Now the post-harvest sachet is being launched for one of the most challenging fruits to keep fresh – cherries.
On April 6, the federal government updated guidelines for seasonal and temporary agricultural workers. As rules are clarified, Bill George, chair, Ontario Fruit & Vegetable Growers’ Association, issued an update to all farm employers.
The average value of Canadian farmland increased by 5.2 per cent in 2019, the smallest increase over the last decade, according to the latest Farmland Values Report by Farm Credit Canada. The statistics do not reflect any impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
One of the critical assets in the food chain is the Ontario Food Terminal. Ken Knox, chair of the board, describes how the crisis team is responding. Look for details in a question-and-answer format with the editor of The Grower.