Welcome to the gluten-free, sushi-less Olympic Games

As with every aspect of the pandemic-postponed Olympics, the virus will cast a long shadow on how people are fed

Welcome to the gluten-free, sushi-less Olympic GamesThe Tokyo Olympic Games are finally upon us. Most of the attention will be given to the athletes, the sports, the empty stands and, of course, COVID-19. But every Olympics brings the gigantic task of feeding an entire village of high-performing humans from all over the world. In Tokyo, that means organizers need to feed…

Food industry code of conduct finally gains traction

Recognizes that manufacturing - including farmers - are the anchor to the entire food supply chain

Food industry code of conduct finally gains tractionA new coalition led by the Retail Council of Canada (RCC) has presented a roadmap to peace within the food industry. It’s a positive step forward for the food production industry and consumers. For years, grocers have unilaterally imposed fees on their suppliers, with questionable excuses. While grocers maintained a hard line to protect margins,…

Canadian food autonomy takes a big step forward

McCain Foods ups the ante in TruLeaf Sustainable Agriculture

Canadian food autonomy takes a big step forwardWe learned recently that McCain Foods has upped the ante in TruLeaf Sustainable Agriculture and its wholly-owned subsidiary GoodLeaf Farms, Canada’s largest commercial vertical farming operation. McCain has invested $65 million in GoodLeaf, making it the single largest shareholder in the venture. The idea is to create a national network of sustainable vertical farms that…

Why a convenience store giant wants to be a grocer

Couche-Tard has a reputation of generating value by polishing hidden gems in companies like Carrefour

Why a convenience store giant wants to be a grocerWe heard this week that Alimentation Couche-Tard is looking at acquiring European-based Carrefour, the seventh largest food retailer in the world. Buying a grocery chain would be a significant departure from what Couche-Tard is known for. A non-binding, friendly offer of $25 billion was sent to Carrefour. Couche-Tard is all about the convenience store economy.…

Food industry keeps adapting to changing times

The food industry is in a much better position going into a second phase of lockdowns. But some risks remain

Food industry keeps adapting to changing timesMany Canadian regions will likely go through a second COVID-19 lockdown soon. And questions about the resiliency of our food supply chain are emerging again. With potentially 60,000 new COVID-19 national cases a day within weeks, it seems inevitable. Further lockdowns could well include even the Atlantic bubble. The COVID-19 virus knows no borders and…

Loblaw’s joins Walmart, Metro in supply chain bullying tactics

Major grocers are off-loading in-store and digital operations costs unto suppliers

Loblaw’s joins Walmart, Metro in supply chain bullying tacticsMajor Canadian grocers in Canada are at it again. After Walmart and Metro, it was Loblaw’s turn to make changes to its vendor policies, implementing new fees to support a $6-billion plan to improve its in-store and digital operations. A letter written by Loblaw Companies president Sarah Davis was leaked to the media. Over the…

How do we solve the local food paradox?

Most of us want to pay more for locally-grown food and will say so, but few actively look for opportunities to do so

How do we solve the local food paradox?Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic disrupting supply chains and impacting purchasing habits, our relationship with food was different. The pandemic has pushed governments to consider food autonomy as a priority and to look more at local supply chains. Discussions are about producing food in Canada, year-round, while offering products to consumers at reasonable prices, especially…

It’s time Canada stopped protecting its dairy industry

Governments tend to forget about consumers when managing supply. Open trade to more cheese and challenge our farmers

It’s time Canada stopped protecting its dairy industryCheese heads – it’s what Canadians are called in many of the United States border regions. It’s because when many Canadians visit their American neighbours, they head straight to the nearest supermarket and buy cheese – and milk and eggs. Dairy and eggs are much more expensive in Canada than in the U.S., even when…

Job rebound sluggish in Canada’s agri-food sector

Job rebound sluggish in Canada’s agri-food sectorStatistics Canada's recent September job market data is reassuring, overall. But for the agri-food sector, the reality is quite different. Overall, employment in the country increased in September, creating 378,000 jobs, the majority of which were full-time. This increase in September brought total employment to 720,000, shy of the level we had before the pandemic.…

As California burns, so does our winter lettuce

Canada depends on imports for fruits and vegetables. We need to think differently about how we feed ourselves during cold months

As California burns, so does our winter lettuceCalifornia is on fire. Although most of the fire-affected territory has nothing to do with agriculture, the smoke is so intense that it could damage many crops. And as fall approaches, the California fires could affect Canada’s food supply for the coming months. Like the labour issues affecting Canadian farmers this summer, this is certainly…