Genetic modification a crucial tool in feeding the world

Scientists have found no negative differences in the health of people eating GM and non-GM foods

Genetic modification a crucial tool in feeding the worldThe changing environment means we face weather patterns that haven’t been seen in generations. And that means new challenges in feeding humanity. But we have the tools. Storms and floods are more frequent and widespread. Changing temperatures affect oceans and lands, wildlife and crops. Because we haven’t seen such changes before, we often don’t know…

Food safety is up against a wall over U.S. government shutdown

Canada is by far the largest destination for U.S. exports of high-value agricultural products. But is that food safe?

Food safety is up against a wall over U.S. government shutdownThe U.S. government shutdown poses a threat to food safety in the United States and Canada. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for 80 per cent of all food facilities in the U.S. It announced recently that it has had to change its daily operations as a result of the partial shutdown, which…

Romaine calm returns but produce safety not guaranteed

If we don't mitigate the risks that come with relying on global food supply chains, one mistake will affect many

Romaine calm returns but produce safety not guaranteedWe went from a slew of alerts on romaine lettuce this fall to a series of clearcut recalls affecting various produce items – including romaine lettuce and cauliflower – when Canadian consumers were at their most vulnerable. At this time of year, the Canadians economy is particularly vulnerable when safety issues arise in imported produce,…

Front-and-centre nutrition alert labels on the way

Health Canada's food labelling proposals should help Canadians deal with an epidemic of obesity and diet-related chronic diseases

Front-and-centre nutrition alert labels on the waySupermarkets are crowded with around 40,000 products, yet most shoppers spend fewer than 10 seconds selecting an item. That’s certainly not enough time to review current Canadian nutrition labels, which are on the back or side of packages and contain detailed information that’s often too complex for many consumers to understand. But nutrition labeling is…

All you can eat, including the packaging?

However, a strong case for taste and food safety will have to be made before consumers will be willing to eat their garbage

All you can eat, including the packaging?Within a year, single-use plastics and excess packaging have become public enemy No. 1. Everyone is talking about how our lives are overrun by too much plastic. A recent Greenpeace-led audit looked at waterways waste and companies involved. Much of the plastic trash cleaned up from Canadian shorelines this fall was traceable to five companies: Nestlé,…

The trouble with edible marijuana products

Edibles scare Health Canada and the food industry, since they’re discrete, convenient and potentially dangerous

The trouble with edible marijuana productsOn Oct. 17, smoking cannabis will become legal in Canada. Cannabis edibles, on the other hand, will be legal in a little less than a year. Once cannabis-infused food products are available, things will get complicated in Canada’s food industry. But with the right regulations, this is a profit opportunity that doesn’t come by every…

How blockchain technology can reassure food consumers

BIXS sees blockchain as a logical addition to traceability in the beef industry, able to easily track specific information

How blockchain technology can reassure food consumersGoogle blockchain and the search results will boggle your mind. You’ll fall into endless reams of information about blockchain and bitcoin. Cryptocurrencies spawned the birth of blockchain, and the technology has grown and adapted to serve other industry needs. Wikipedia defines blockchain as a continuously growing list of records, called blocks, which are linked and…

Consumers want greater transparency in food production

Canada is the first country to launch a producer framework for sustainable beef production, to certify cattle operations and track chain of custody

Consumers want greater transparency in food productionThe Beef InfoXchange System (BIXS) is an answer to the needs and demands of consumers and their trusted retailers. With the launch of a new generation of BIXS, which is a web-based data management system that operates a value-added traceability system, transparency, traceability and verification in beef production is a reality. Recognizing that ease of…

Health Canada’s suggested new food labelling has limitations

Would help consumers know what's in their food but there are some gaps in the system

Health Canada’s suggested new food labelling has limitationsWhen it comes to food, the current federal government is big on consultations. Health Canada recently launched online public discussions and consumer-oriented research to find the best front-of-package labelling formula. Four models have been presented – Health Canada appears to want to keep its options open (although all the logos look the same). Saturated fats, sugar…

In the fight for kids’ attention, parents don’t stand a chance

Study shows Canadian kids see more than 25 million online food and beverage ads a year – mostly for junk food. It's time for that to end

In the fight for kids’ attention, parents don’t stand a chanceDear Parents, I’m writing you because you may be in the dark about the amount of unhealthy food and beverage marketing your children and teens are viewing. This isn’t your fault. It’s our reality. We’ve let food and beverage companies have a huge influence on our children. Twenty-five years ago, a parent might be expected…