Cracking down on COVID-19 profiteers

While artificially inflated retail food prices are possible in Canada at any time, it’s highly unusual – even now

Cracking down on COVID-19 profiteersEven if they really haven’t had good reason, many Canadians have felt food insecure lately. Access to food has been a concern. Affordability is certainly a close second. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, consumers have occasionally taken to social media to report inflated prices by retailers. Even though the accusations were warranted in…

Will a pandemic and an oil price war bring cheaper food?

The global economy is being hammered. The good news is consumers may see cheaper food prices but there’s a big, dark cloud on the horizon

Will a pandemic and an oil price war bring cheaper food?Most analysts agree that the oil price war is only beginning. Abundant cheap oil will impact the entire agri-food market, from farm gate to plate. And the coronavirus pandemic is compounding what’s already a fragile global economy. The pandemic and the oil price war caused a massive sell-off in equity and crude oil markets this…

The dollar store invasion gains momentum

Dollar stores in Canada sold well over $2 billion worth of food last year. And given how aggressive dollar stores are, that could double quickly

The dollar store invasion gains momentumA visit to any dollar store is something to remember: the bright lights, aisles filled with things you may or may not need, and the distinctive smell. If we had to create a smell that mixes plastic with China, the smell in a dollar store would be it. It’s not overly appetizing but a greater…

Keep calm and eat your fries

Potatoes are 20% more expensive in grocery stores than they were last year, and they could get even more expensive in 2020. Our craving for this food staple is likely to blame

Keep calm and eat your friesMost of us love fries and chips. Other than ketogenic, most diets don’t discriminate against the mighty potato. It’s even in the new Canada’s Food Guide. Most dishes using potatoes are loved by Canadians, especially in winter, when colder weather encourages us to seek heartier meals. But North America is experiencing potato shortages and processors…

‘Eat local’ food movement doomed to fail in Ontario and beyond

The “local food” movement is mostly about connecting producers of expensive niche products with middle- and upper-middle class patrons

‘Eat local’ food movement doomed to fail in Ontario and beyondAcross Ontario, “local food” activists continue to promote the economic, social and environmental virtues of small local alternative farms, community gardens, backyard henhouses and older, less efficient and more expensive ways to produce food. In response, the Ontario government – directly or through organizations such as Foodland Ontario, the Greenbelt Fund and the Trillium Foundation…

Living in a better world, one shared meal at a time

Ivonne Gamboa of GOAT talks about how the food-sharing app can be a difference-maker for many people

Living in a better world, one shared meal at a timeIvonne Gamboa is CEO of GOAT. What is GOAT and what does it stand for? Gamboa: Goat Generation is a mobile app that enables meal sharing among communities in a new and unique way. The term GOAT is used to define an exceptional person, experience or thing – GOAT is the greatest of all time.…

Food affordability needs to be a key election issue

Food costs are rising faster than inflation and healthy food may be getting out of the reach for many Canadians. But don’t expect to hear much about it over the next few weeks

Food affordability needs to be a key election issueBy Sylvain Charlebois Atlantic Institute for Market Studies and Howard Ramos Dalhousie University One of the main issues shaping the current federal election campaign is affordability. It has repeatedly been a leading concern for Canadians in opinion polls and should help determine who wins. So it’s no surprise that every political party promises to focus…

Holy guacamole! Avocados are expensive

Until Mexico ramps up production, we’ll pay higher prices. And corruption in the Mexican avocado industry could force suppliers to more socially-acceptable sources

Holy guacamole! Avocados are expensiveAvocados have been expensive for a while. And if you expect them to fall in price, you’ll need to wait a while longer. Typically, most Canadians expect to pay $1 per unit. But in the last few months, it’s almost impossible to find them below $2 apiece. And if you do buy an avocado, it…

Carbon tax will drive up grocery prices

The environmental and social costs of producing, distributing and selling food are rarely factored in. That’s about to change

Carbon tax will drive up grocery pricesThe carbon tax is now a reality for all Canadians – and that means food prices will be impacted. The federal carbon pricing scheme took effect in Ontario, New Brunswick, Saskatchewan and Manitoba on April 1. These provinces had previously chosen not to comply with the new federal law through their own initiatives. Pricing will…

Two for One isn’t always cheaper

Bulk buying discounts to stretch your budget only work if you have extra cash to spend

Two for One isn’t always cheaperDoes your heart skip a beat when you see a skid full of ‘buy one get one free’ grocery items? Maybe the words ‘deep discount while supplies last’ gets you filling your cart with three times as much of the stuff as you’d normally buy? Or, do you head straight for a bulk discount store…
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