Wheat makes the world go round

Wheat is one of the world’s staple crops. And Ukraine and Russia are critical exporters

Wheat makes the world go roundFor American academic Scott Reynolds Nelson, the timing was fortuitous. His Oceans of Grain came to market coincident with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. And as Nelson’s thesis revolves around the critical role wheat has played in history, the invasion’s implications for supply disruption add to the book’s topicality. For sure, Nelson may egg the pudding.…

The world is running out of oil – vegetable oil

The entire planet will be impacted, one way or another

The world is running out of oil – vegetable oilIt’s funny how sometimes we take the simple things in life for granted. Cooking oil, or vegetable oil, is certainly one of them. Our appreciation for vegetable oil will likely reach new levels in months to come. Oil prices have increased by 25 per cent in just the last six months. While palm oil went…

The world is on the brink of a food shortage

More than 100 million people will soon experience either famine or hunger

The world is on the brink of a food shortageFood supply chain hangovers due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have resulted in questions about the global nature of our food systems. Some suggest we need to deglobalize and refocus our energy on making most economies around the world food sovereign, including Canada’s. Given what the world is…

Putin’s War puts global food security in jeopardy

The pandemic was just a dress rehearsal for what’s about to happen

Putin’s War puts global food security in jeopardyUnited States President Joe Biden was the first G7 leader to admit publicly that many parts of the world will soon experience food shortages and even famine. The world will be short of many commodities. Regions like the Middle East and northeastern Africa already have dangerously low food inventories. The world will soon discover that…

The potato chips war is just the tip of the iceberg

PepsiCo’s move signals that the sector is tired of - and desperate to stop - supply-chain bullying

The potato chips war is just the tip of the icebergWe recently learned that Frito-Lay, a brand owned by giant PepsiCo Canada, stopped selling to Loblaws after the retailer refused requests by Frito-Lay to increase their prices. Food manufacturers, when selling products to grocers, suggest retail prices. With low profit margins, labour shortages, packaging issues and supply-chain woes, inflation has been violently disruptive to manufacturers.…

Supply chain woes compromise food freshness at stores

Shelflation leaves consumers with a sour taste

Supply chain woes compromise food freshness at storesYou have likely heard of shrinkflation, in which companies reduce the quantity of an item they sell you without changing the price. This packaging strategy has been going on for years and creates the illusion you’re buying the same amount of product. And when supply chains aren’t working optimally, food products reach store shelves either…

Vaccine mandate for truckers puts extra pressure on grocers

Robbing the industry of the oxygen it desperately needs

Vaccine mandate for truckers puts extra pressure on grocersIn many parts of the country, Canadians report a growing number of empty grocery store shelves. It’s also happening in the United States and many other parts of the industrialized world. Before the COVID-19 Omicron variant arrived, empty shelves were visible but few shoppers noticed. They were sporadic in the fall as supply-chain woes continued,…

Trudeau needs to shelve his plan to ban unvaccinated truckers

It puts Canadians' access to food at risk

Trudeau needs to shelve his plan to ban unvaccinated truckersThe federal government apparently still wants to push ahead with its plan to require all truckers entering from the United States to show proof of vaccination starting Jan. 15. The plan creates some serious problems. Vaccines are the most effective way to reduce risks associated with COVID-19, stop the spread of the virus and save…

Top food-related stories of 2021

We should be thankful for what the food industry is doing for all of us, every day, one miracle at a time

Top food-related stories of 2021The year 2021 was certainly another challenging one for most of us. It was also incredibly difficult for people in the food industry, from farmgate to plate. Most headlines related to the food industry had to do with problems and issues related to supply chains, labour, and forced closures due to COVID-19 outbreaks and many…

Food supply chain resilience put to the test by B.C. floods

Supply chains in Western Canada have always been vulnerable and that’s not going to change anytime soon

Food supply chain resilience put to the test by B.C. floodsImages from British Columbia over the past week have been heartbreaking: human casualties, dairy cows barely breathing above water before being pulled to safety, the loss of livestock across the Fraser Valley. Just devastating. And the flow of goods on rail and roads is severely compromised. Many now claim that flash floods and atmospheric rivers…
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