Business & Policy

Poultry groups have called it a giveaway, failure and deeply concerning. The reviews are in for the latest version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement. They aren’t good.
Turkey Farmers of Canada (TFC) is deeply troubled and concerned about the signing of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).“We believe this deal will harm the turkey sector,” said TFC chair Mark Davies. “There was no need to maintain the market access levels of the original TPP, which were made in response to demands by the U.S., which is no longer part of the agreement.”After the U.S. pulled out from the original Trans-Pacific Partnership, the remaining 11 member countries agreed on January 23, 2018 to a revised trade agreement in principle. The agreement is scheduled to officially be signed in early March 2018.This deal will increase import access to the Canadian turkey market by 71 per cent, representing $270 million in lost farm cash receipts over the next 19 years, and a farm output loss of at least 4.5 per cent.“Farmers’ livelihoods will be impacted by corresponding farm income losses, without even taking into account downward pressure on farm prices or the market growth Canadian farmers will lose to exporters,” said Davies. “Total economic activity losses in the order of $111 million per year will occur throughout the value-chain.”“We will be losing family farms, at a time when 90 per cent of Canadians want turkey produced in Canada according to a 2017 survey,” Davies noted. “The original TPP agreement came with commitments to mitigation and remedies for border irritants. We look forward to working with the government to follow through on these commitments and work on solutions tailored to our sector.”
January 26, 2018, Montreal, Que. – A group of pro-NAFTA American farmers descended on Montreal on Friday and expressed cautious optimism that a deal will be reached, despite unresolved issues at the negotiating table that include Canada's supply management system.U.S. President Donald Trump has described Canada's protectionist policies for dairy, poultry and eggs as unfair, and people close to the NAFTA talks have indicated that more access to Canadian dairy market is a key American demand.As the sixth round of negotiations continued at a nearby hotel, member of Farmers for Free Trade stressed the importance of exports to American producers and expressed hope for a quick resolution on the file.Former chief U.S. agriculture negotiator Darci Vetter said that while the highly protected agriculture sector is always contentious, other recent free-trade agreements have shown the issue isn't insurmountable.Canada's free-trade deal with the European Union and the recently revised Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement have showed the country is willing to compromise on the sacred cow of supply management, she said.''What used to be the uncrossable barrier of putting dairy in a trade agreement was crossed with the agreement with the EU and certainly the TPP package,'' Vetter said in an interview following a press briefing at a downtown hotel.''So there are examples this can be done. The question is how, at what level, and over what period of time.''The revised TPP deal struck on Tuesday included a concession on the supply-managed dairy sector, which is to be opened up by 3.25 per cent to foreign competition.Vetter, a consultant for Farmers for Free Trade, said it's ''not unreasonable'' that the United States would ask for access to the dairy market as part of a revised NAFTA.She added that negotiators for all sides are very familiar with each other's positions and what is possible.''Hopefully the negotiators will have a pragmatic discussion about how we get there, understanding the political pressure is high,'' she said.Kansas cattle and hog farmer Terry Nelson said Trump's recent comments to CNBC, where the president suggested the United States might enter the TPP if it got a ''better deal,'' are a reason for optimism and a sign Trump has been listening to his pro-trade agriculture secretary, Sonny Perdue.''We've got a lot of faith in President Trump being willing to listen to agriculture,'' Nelson said. ''I know Secretary Perdue has had a lot of conversations that have finally been acknowledged and...I think we're going to be all right.''All the members of the group present at the meeting stressed the importance of bending Trump's ear to the needs of the agriculture sector and its importance to his conservative rural base.They also pushed for a quick resolution to the talks, noting that the uncertainty of the protracted negotiating process could harm the export-dependent sector.''We don't know quite where the end of the road is or where it will be...but it will probably put a little drag on exports of both meat and grain,'' Nelson said.The NAFTA negotiations are scheduled to conclude Monday.
January 25, 2018, Ottawa, Ont. – Egg Farmers of Canada (EFC) has weighed in on Tuesday’s Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) announcement.In a press release, the organization said it was disappointed with the deal, describing it as a failure to protect the future of Canada's egg farms.EFC added it also represents a hit on Canadian consumers.“The outcome of the CPTPP agreement means difficult challenges for Canada's egg farmers, their communities and many farms and businesses they support,” EFC chairman Roger Pelissero said.Once fully implemented, Canadian egg farmers will have lost the right to produce close to 291 million dozen eggs, with an additional 19 million dozen eggs added each year after the implementation phase.The total value of the trade deal represents close to $1 billion dollars in lost farm family income.“Our farmers make a sizeable contribution to Canada's food system, help keep rural communities vibrant and feed urban consumers' appetite for locally produced food. The concessions under the CPTPP impact the livelihood of Canada's more than 1,000 egg farm families,” Pelissero added.EFC recognized the CPTPP as an opportunity for the Canadian economy overall.However, it added there was little incentive for Canada to give away the market access concessions that were originally agreed to in October 2015 when the U.S. was still a part of the deal.Given the seriousness of the CPTPP outcome, EFC urged the government to expedite work on mitigation measures.In concluding its statement, EFC said, “We must work side by side to address the impact this will have on our farmers, on our consumers and our ability to produce and deliver the Canadian products they expect, need and enjoy.”
January 24, 2018, Ottawa, Ont. – Chicken Farmers of Canada has slammed the new Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) agreement, framing it as a giveaway.The deal includes concessions on market access for chicken products that were granted in the original Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in response to U.S. demands.Given that the U.S. has since withdrawn from the TPP, those concessions should have been taken off the table, the organization said in a press release.CFC said this is especially true since none of the other partners have provided anything in exchange for this increased access to the Canadian chicken market.The new CPTPP access represents an additional 2.1 per cent of the Canadian production that will be imported, in addition to Canada's existing commitments of 7.5 per cent for a total of 9.6 per cent.“It is more important than ever that the government start closing the loopholes and implementing the programs that were previously promised when the TPP was first concluded,” said Benoît Fontaine, chair of Chicken Farmers of Canada.He was referring to commitments made in October 2015 to deliver the support programs and implement the anti-circumvention measures relating to chicken.These include mislabeled broiler chicken imported as spent fowl, the addition of sauce to circumvent import quotas and excluding supply-managed products from DRP (duties relief program) to stop the loopholes announced at the conclusion of the original agreement.Together, the circumventions have resulted in annual losses of: Over $139 million in farm cash receipts 4,456 jobs $335.3 million to the GDP $11.9 million in tax revenues “Increased access to the Canadian chicken market, especially without gaining something in return, is going to impact jobs from coast to coast,” Fontaine said. “These programs will help lessen the damage being done by the giving away of our market access.”Fontaine added, “We need to make it clear that we have reached the limit of what we can give in any future negotiations. If the U.S. wants access to our market, for example, they are welcome to rejoin the CPTPP.”
January 24, 2018, Palestine, Texas/Mexico City - Workers at the Sanderson Farms plant in Palestine, Texas, are cutting up chickens for export to Mexico, a market that has become a pillar of the town’s economy and a key focus of the U.S. poultry sector. 
Getting rid of supply management and regulating abortion are just two of the more than six dozen policy resolutions that will be on the agenda at the federal Conservative party's biennial convention in Halifax later this month.The gathering marks the first such policy convention since Andrew Scheer became leader, and will set the stage for the party's bid to wrest power away from the governing Liberals in 2019.The resolution to phase out the supply management system for dairy, eggs and poultry comes from riding associations in Ottawa and Red Deer, Alta., not from renegade Quebec MP and former leadership contender Maxime Bernier, an ardent opponent of the mechanism.It seeks to replace the current party policy of supporting supply management, which allows producer marketing boards to set quotas and regulate prices for dairy and poultry production.It appears the party has ranked the resolution so low on the order of precedence it may never actually make it to the floor for debate.Two other resolutions seek to break the party's silence on abortion, including one calling for a ''pre-born child policy'' that would declare protection for unborn children ''a perfectly valid legislative objective'' for the Conservatives.The party has approved 74 resolutions for consideration at the convention and grouped them into three lists to be debated first by smaller groups of delegates in workshops. Only about 10 from each workshop will be considered by the entire membership.The supply management resolution is 26th in a list of 26 resolutions on the list for one of the three workshops.Supply management has become a tinderbox within Conservative ranks, thanks in large part to Bernier's very visible, vocal disdain for the policy - and his razor-thin loss to Scheer in last year's leadership race.In an unpublished book about his political ideals, Bernier wrote that Scheer only won because ''fake Conservatives'' in Quebec who wanted to save supply management joined the party in order to keep the Beauce MP from winning.Bernier's efforts to promote the book ultimately cost him his role as a critic in Scheer's shadow cabinet.The Campaign Life Coalition is trying to get 1,000 members registered to attend the convention to help support the abortion resolutions, which are listed second and seventh on one workshop list, giving them a decent chance of being fully debated.The coalition says its membership was so well represented at the 2016 convention, it helped pass a ''conscience rights'' resolution to protect health care providers from prosecution if they do not want to perform abortions or play a role in a medically assisted suicide.A resolution on the table this month calls for that right to be extended to faith-based institutions.The convention is scheduled to take place Aug. 23-25.
It’s that time of year again where we celebrate industry leaders from across the country. Indeed, our annual Who’s Who issue is back. This time we’ve added a few new twists. For one, we gave the issue a theme. Our first premise is “Rising Poultry Stars” and each year after we’ll be giving the issue a different focus.
Canada's system of supply management has been the target of heated political debate for the better part of half a century — but very few Canadians outside of the affected farm sectors actually understand how it works, or who foots the bill for stabilizing farmers' incomes.Supply management is a system that allows specific commodity sectors — dairy, poultry and eggs — to limit the supply of their products to what Canadians are expected to consume in order to ensure predictable, stable prices.While the federal government has played a role in supporting agricultural pricing policies for more than a century, the current system of supply management traces its origins to the 1960s — a period of overproduction due to technological advances that resulted in low prices for farmers. | READ MORE
Proposed service fee increases for veterinary drugs will create serious and unintended consequences, says a new report from Agri-Food Economic Systems.The report, commissioned by the Canadian Animal Health Institute, finds that proposed service fees for the review and maintenance of veterinary drugs are to increase up to 500 per cent, effective April 1st, 2019. Access to veterinary drugs would become more challenging as a result of these excessively high fees. This in turn will result in fewer veterinary drugs available in Canada leaving our food animal industries in a less competitive position, and leaving pet owners and horse enthusiasts with an increasingly difficult challenge to maintain their animals’ health and welfare.Health Canada suggests that the proposed fees make Canada consistent with those applied in the United States (US), the European Union (EU) and Australia, “But Canada has a much smaller livestock population than the US, EU, or even Australia, and as such the animal health marketfrom which to recover these service fees is much smaller”, says Douglas Hedley, Agri-Food Economic Systems Associate and co-author of the report. “These service fees proposed for Canada will exceed those in competing regions, on a unit basis, by a considerable margin."The report finds that the high fees being proposed for Canada would result in fewer veterinary drugs being registered in Canada. It says that some companies will cease to market drugs for minor species and for niche products in this country. Options such as not treating and culling ananimal, finding alternative therapies to licensed medicines, increased use of compounded drugs and other unapproved products will be used in the absence of licensed veterinary drugs. In other cases, firms may attempt to pass through increased costs in pricing, and many will find animal health products unaffordable. Reduced access to veterinary drugs could harm the health status of food animals due to the substitution of unregistered product as a means of keeping animals healthy. This in turn threatens the phytosanitary standards of Canadian food animal exports.“The proposed fees will have unintended consequences that will hurt the safety of our food supply, our trade with foreign countries and reduce pet owner access to health management tools for their pets”, says report co-author Al Mussell, Agri-Food Economic Systems research lead.“This is an administrative decision made without the full understanding of the ramifications for Canada’s economic competitiveness and welfare of its animals; it also sets an alarming precedent for regulatory service fees that could apply elsewhere in the agri-food chain”.The report can be accessed at www.agrifoodecon.ca. Agri-Food Economic Systems is an independent economic research organization dedicated to agri-food located in Guelph, Ontario.
As if tax planning weren’t painful enough for poultry producers… Over the past year, the federal government has made things even more confusing – and drawn the ire of farmers in the process. Last summer, the feds unveiled controversial small business tax reforms.
Many of you are aware that the Federal Government recently introduced tax legislation that affects farm business owners all over Canada. Because of the rapid way in which things progressed, there is a lot of confusion as to what legislation was proposed, modified, or simply dropped altogether.I have attempted to outline the “evolution” of these tax changes in this article, from early 2017 to where we are today.I wish I could tell you that the tax changes create a better tax environment for business owners, but in my opinion the opposite is true – business owners now face more complexities and uncertainties then ever in managing their tax affairs and trying to comply with tax legislation.On that positive note, let us start with a quick history lesson:Background/TimelineMarch 22, 2017 – Budget 2017Finance signals its intention to address specific tax planning strategies employed by business owners.July 18, 2017 – Finance releases the ProposalsFinance releases the consultation paper, and unexpected draft legislation and explanatory notes (“the Proposals”).The Proposals target the following strategies: Income splitting (“Income Splitting Proposals”): Income splitting is redirecting taxable income between the family so that the family “unit” pays the least amount of income tax. This includes allowing more than one family member to access the Enhanced Capital Gains Exemption (ECGE). Private corporations investing in passive assets (“Passive Investment Proposals”): Canadian-controlled private corporations carrying on an active business in Canada (which includes farming) have the ability to pay a low rate of tax on the first $500,000 of corporate business profits. Corporations can invest the after-tax business profits in rental property, stocks, bonds, etc., and delay triggering personal tax until some later date. Surplus stripping (“Surplus Stripping Proposals”): Converting what would otherwise be a taxable dividend from a company to a capital gain, which are currently taxed at lower rates. July 19, 2017 – October 2, 2017 – Reaction to the ProposalsOutrage within the business and tax community ensues.The business and tax community identify a significant number of issues with the Proposals, including but not limited to:Income Splitting Proposals: Too complicated for business owners, let alone professional tax advisors, to understand, increasing tax compliance costs. Significant concern that the Proposals will result in CRA challenges to what should be a relatively simple business decision, i.e. how much can I pay my family members and myself. The cost of incorrectly applying these rules is significant – income is taxed at the highest marginal tax rate for the province of residency. In Ontario, this can be as high as 54%. Farmers and their family members may not be able to access their ECGE. Passive Investment Proposals: Business owners will pay extremely high rates of tax on investment income earned in a corporation and paid out to the owner as a dividend. In some cases, the rate of tax could be as high as 73%. The sale of land or quota within a corporation, or the rental of land owned by a corporation, is treated as investment income, which would specifically affect farmers. Surplus Stripping Proposals: Estates could face significantly larger tax burdens if a business owner passes away. Tax costs to transition incorporated businesses to the next generation increase significantly, providing a tax incentive to sell the business “outside” the family. October 16, 2017 – October 19, 2017 – Finance Takes a Step BackFinance makes a number of significant announcements regarding the Proposals: October 16, 2017: Finance announces it intends to proceed with the Income Splitting Proposals, however They intend to simplify them; and Restrictions on the ECGE will be dropped altogether. October 16, 2017: Finance announces it will reduce the small business tax rate to 10% effective January 1, 2018 and to 9% effective January 1, 2019. This affects CCPC’s carrying on an active business in Canada. This announcement is a surprise, albeit a welcome one. October 18, 2017: Finance announces it intends to proceed with the Passive Investment Proposals, however current investments will be “protected” from the new rules, as well as corporations earning less than $50,000 of investment income in any given year. October 19, 2017: Finance announces it is going to drop the Surplus Stripping Proposals altogether. December 13, 2017 – Finance releases “Version 2” of the Income Splitting ProposalsThe revised Income Splitting Proposals are simplified, and a number of exclusions to the rules are introduced.The Income Splitting Proposals are to be effective January 1, 2018.February 27, 2018 – Budget 2018Finance releases draft legislation regarding the Passive Investment Proposals.These rules are simpler and less complicated compared to what Finance was originally proposing.March 27, 2018 – Bill C74 – Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 1 (March 27, 2018)“Version 3” of the Income Splitting Proposals as well as the Passive Investment Proposals are introduced in this Bill.Where are We Now?Income Splitting ProposalsWe are in a completely different world now when it comes to income splitting.A family business carried on through a corporation, partnership, or trust must consider the new rules when any family member is paid from that business.Generally speaking, if you pay a family member income from a family business, that income will attract the highest marginal tax rate for your province. This concept is known as “tax on split income,” or TOSI.Thankfully, there are exceptions to the TOSI rules. Some of the more notable ones are as follows: TOSI does not apply to a wage or salary – which have always been subject to a “reasonability” requirement; TOSI does not apply to income from an “excluded business” – this exception looks at the level of involvement of the family member in the business, both in the current year and throughout the history of the business; TOSI does not apply to income from “excluded shares” – this exception is only relevant for incorporated businesses, and looks at the nature of the business being carried on in the company, the source of its income, as well as the type and number of shares owned; and TOSI does not apply to a capital gain from the disposition of “qualified farm property,” which can include shares of a family farm corporation, however you still have to be careful if a minor shareholder is involved. There are other exceptions to TOSI as well which might be relevant for your situation.Passive Investment ProposalsEffective January 1, 2019, if a corporation earns in excess of $50,000 of investment income in the prior year, access to the low small business tax rate in the next year is affected.This will apply to the corporation earning the investment income, as well as any other corporations “associated” with that corporation (essentially a group of corporations with common control/shareholders).“Investment income” will not include the sale of assets that are used in an active business, such as farmland or quota.Next StepsConsult with your tax advisor immediately to: Determine the impact of the Income Splitting Proposals on the current business structure/remuneration plan for family members; Consider the impact of the Passive Investment Proposals and whether access to the low small business tax rate is affected, assuming your business is incorporated; and Determine whether any planning or restructuring is required because of these new rules. In the meantime, we anxiously await more direction from Finance and CRA on many of the issues, uncertainties, and complexities relating to the legislation in its current form.
Maple Leaf Foods recently announced it is investing approximately $28 million to transition its Edmonton poultry processing facility to world-class controlled atmosphere stunning (CAS) technology, reflecting its commitment to building on its leadership in animal care, the poultry sector and value-added branded fresh chicken.Maple Leaf will convert its transportation, lairage and receiving area and handling systems to optimize rest-time and create a climate-controlled environment as it implements this technology. The new lairage system will enhance lighting, air quality and temperature control, allowing chickens to rest comfortably and significantly reducing stress. The CAS technology selected is a very humane system that will ensure birds are fully insensible prior to processing. The conversion will result in a 26,000-square foot expansion at the Edmonton facility, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2019."We are on a journey to become the most sustainable protein company on earth and being a leader in animal care is a cornerstone of this vision," said Michael McCain, president and CEO, Maple Leaf Foods. "We are deploying world-class technologies and best practices that support our goal to eliminate stress and pain and provide humane treatment of animals in our care, while enhancing employee health and safety and food quality. With Canada's leading poultry brands, we are advancing many dimensions of sustainability, from eliminating antibiotics, to best practices in animal care and dramatic reductions in our environmental footprint.""CAS provides many advantages to animal welfare, ensuring chickens are fully unconscious and humanely euthanized, while greatly reducing stress," according to Dr. Greg Douglas, vice-president, animal care. "This technology, which we have also installed at our pork processing facility in Manitoba, is acknowledged as a best practice around the world," Douglas added.Maple Leaf Foods is also installing Remote Video Auditing at this facility, a powerful training and auditing tool that supports rigorous monitoring and compliance to best practices of animal care. This will be the ninth implementation as part of Maple Leaf's commitment to incorporate Remote Video Auditing across its network.Poultry is the most consumed protein in Canada and Maple Leaf Foods has the leading national brands and market position in value-added poultry, which continues to experience significant growth. To support its leadership, Maple Leaf has added a second shift at this facility to keep pace with demand and recently invested approximately $16 million to expand capacity at its hatchery operations in Wetaskiwin, Alberta. Maple Leaf has additionally reached an agreement to acquire two poultry processing facilities and related supply, with significant value-added capabilities, from Cericola Farms.
Maple Leaf Foods recently announced that Gary Maksymetz, who has held the role of chief operating officer (COO) since 2014 and has almost four decades of experience in the food industry, mostly with Maple Leaf, has made a personal decision to retire at the end of September.During his tenure, Gary has led a wide range of functions at Maple Leaf and successfully driven major strategic initiatives that have resulted in significant, structural long-term value creation. He will provide ongoing strategic counsel to support the transition of his responsibilities and more broadly to the Senior Leadership Team, who will continue to benefit from his expertise and deep industry knowledge.Curtis Frank, who has held the position of senior vice president, retail since 2014, will assume the role of COO, effective October 1, 2018. In this capacity, he will have overall executive responsibility for the Company's prepared meats, fresh pork and poultry operations, and commercial activities, and a lead role in the development and implementation of strategic business initiatives that advance Maple Leaf's profitable growth and vision to be the most sustainable protein company on earth."Gary has made a profound contribution to Maple Leaf and I am deeply grateful for his astute leadership, intellect and counsel over our many years together," said Michael H. McCain, president and CEO. "One of our organizational priorities is to establish effective succession planning that delivers continuity of leadership and experience, while providing career opportunities for our next generation of leaders who bring new ideas and capabilities to leading Maple Leaf into the future. Curtis is an intensely results-oriented, strategic and progressive executive who is deeply committed to advancing our vision, growth and profitability."Frank has over 18 years of experience at Maple Leaf in progressively senior roles where he has demonstrated exemplary people and leadership skills and results. In his capacity as senior vice president retail, he has led a high performance North American sales organization and the successful commercial execution of several strategic initiatives, including the company's recent brand renovation and U.S. sales expansion. He is a member of the Maple Leaf senior leadership team and serves as a director for the Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security. He brings extensive knowledge of Maple Leaf, the marketplace and managing large and complex businesses to the role of COO.
For the first time, HatchCare chicks have been born in the United Kingdom. Specifically, these first chicks were hatched on July 16 in Boston, Lincolnshire, U.K., and were directly provided with feed, water and light post-hatch. HatchTech commissioned the HatchCare hatchery together with Annyalla Chicks, a family business that runs independent hatcheries in Ireland and the U.K.Following the positive results of several field trips to HatchCare hatcheries and farms, equipping this hatchery with HatchCare was selected for Annyalla Chicks. John Mawer, CEO of Annyalla Chicks says, “The evidence I’ve seen shows improvement in many areas, including enhanced hatching results, superior technical performance at broiler level and reduced medication requirements. Above all, the biggest attraction for us is the much-improved welfare it brings to our chicks.”The hatchery will produce 500,000 day-old chicks in the first phase, with the possibility of extending this to 2.2 million day-old chicks within the existing building. HatchTech delivered the whole package of incubation solutions – from setters and HatchCare units to heating, cooling and ventilation equipment.“We’re very pleased with this successful startup and the entrance of HatchCare chicks into the UK market. We’re proud to be able to provide Annyalla Chicks with all the benefits of early feeding, such as improved welfare conditions, undisrupted development of the birds and better technical performance at broiler farm level. We’re really looking forward to a successful rollout,” says Michiel van Veldhuisen, international sales manager with HatchTech.Besides building a HatchCare hatchery, Annyalla Chicks also commissioned a HatchTraveller. This enables the chicks to eat during transportation, which will enhance chick quality and positively contribute to their development. The HatchTraveller will be supplied in September.
Jamesway Incubation Company Inc., incubation and hatchery equipment manufacturer, announced that Denis Kan, CPA, CMA, will assume the role of president replacing former president Christopher Omiecinski. In his former positions as Jamesway C.O.O. and director of finance, Kan has led the company through many new processes and has used his formidable organizational skills to propel the company to new achievements. As president, Kan can be expected to continue this forward surge as Jamesway continues to acquire market share in the hatchery sector.Denis brings a strong set of technical and analytical skills in financial management, reporting, and organization and planning coupled with key knowledge in operational monitoring, analysis and control and strong business acumen in strategic analysis and planning and tactical business and process alignment. He has experience directly in field sales and national accounts as well as a history of partnering with sales to work with strategic customers. Jamesway welcomes the senior management change and looks forward to continued growth with Kan at the helm.
Olymel L.P. executives announced the acquisition of all the shares of Pinty's Delicious Foods Inc., an Ontario poultry slaughtering and processing company that specializes in fully cooked products and other related products. Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, Pinty's employs 360 people. The company operates three processing plants, respectively located in Port Colborne, Paris, and Oakville, Ontario. Pinty's markets its products throughout Canada and the United States under the brands Pinty's Food Service, Pinty's Pub & Grill, Pinty's Eat Well, Pinty's Perfect Portions and Pinty's Delicious Food Inc."Olymel is confident that this transaction will benefit our development and growth. We are proud to welcome the employees of Pinty's Delicious Foods Inc. Over the past 70 years, Pinty's has developed great expertise on the Canadian and American markets by offering innovative and exclusive products under brand names that have become extremely popular with many consumers and customers. We know that this family business has been served by passionate owners throughout its history. We are also pleased to invest and strengthen our presence in Ontario and on the Canadian market," said Réjean Nadeau, Olymel's president and CEO.Current employees of Pinty's Delicious Foods Inc. will continue to work within the company. The closing of this transaction is subject to the approval of the Competition Bureau. Meanwhile, both companies will continue their activities separately and independently."The owners and management of Pinty's Delicious Foods are happy to have found a Canadian buyer. We are confident that Olymel will grow our company and ensure it a promising future. I truly believe that our employees will benefit from the advantages of working for a large group like Olymel, a company that has a unique expertise in the processing and marketing of poultry products. We are proud of the company and the business network that we have built around Pinty's brands for decades and I am certain that this transaction will also benefit our customers and consumers," said Jack Vanderlaan, executive chairman of Pinty's.This acquisition is part of Olymel's action to consolidate its position in Canada as the leader of the pork and poultry slaughtering and processing sector. Specifically, in the poultry sector, Olymel owns seven poultry slaughtering and processing establishments in Quebec, Ontario and New Brunswick serving the entirety of the Canadian market under the brands Olymel, Flamingo and Galco, in addition to placing its production capacity at the service of private brands. Pinty's will pursue its activities, continue to serve its current customers and honour its supply agreements according to the prevailing poultry market conventions in Ontario.
As part of Cargill Protein’s efforts to address growing interest from customers and consumers for continuous improvement in humane handling of food animals, Cargill Protein is investing $22 million (CDN) to install a state-of-the-art Controlled Atmospheric Stunning (CAS) system at its London, Ont., chicken processing facility. The system replaces electric stunning and will be operational this spring.“As we grow our business to meet consumer and customer demand for wholesome, nutritious, affordable animal protein, we continuously explore enhancements that position us as an industry leader in both animal welfare and protein production,” said Claudecir Pagnussatto, plant general manager at London. “Our new CAS system will help reduce handling stress with chickens, resulting in a higher-quality, more consistent product.”While both electric and CAS stunning systems are approved, proven and acceptable for humane poultry harvesting, a growing number of consumers and customers are expressing a desire for CAS systems at poultry facilities. Cargill was a pioneer in the use of CAS at a U.S. turkey processing facility more than a decade ago.“Cargill is committed to ensuring the highest standards of animal welfare are maintained and believes all food animals deserve respect and dignity prior to harvesting. We have led the way in many areas of animal welfare,” said Dr. Stephanie Cottee, Cargill’s global head of poultry welfare. “We were the first to install third-party remote video auditing at our harvest plants to ensure our animal welfare program is properly implemented.“For the past two years, we have been named to the second highest international company ranking tier by the U.K.-based Business Benchmark for Farm Animal Welfare. We are dedicated to animal welfare because it’s the right thing to do.”This investment also underscores Cargill’s commitment to its traditional protein business, with nearly $900 million of investments in North America over the past two years to ensure continued growth. Cargill’s London, Ont., chicken processing facility serves customers throughout Canada and produces a variety of products to meet customer specifications. It was opened in 1987 and employs more than 830 people.
With farms, woods, wildlife and fresh air, rural residents cherish the charm and beauty of the countryside. Many people move from cities seeking peace and a pristine environment in the country.Most people understand that a rural community includes farmers and that farming is a business. Ontario’s agriculture and food sector employs 760,000 people and contributes more than $35 billion to the province’s economy every year. This means that certain activities take place according to a production schedule; and some affect residents living close to farms. In almost all cases, farmers and their rural neighbours get along well together. However, there are some exceptions.For the year of 2015- 2016 the ministry received 107 complaints related to farm practices. Of these, 45 (40 per cent) were about odour, while the others were mainly about noise (26 per cent), flies (19 per cent) and municipal by-laws (nine per cent).Odour complaints are generally related to: Farmers spreading manure on fields Fans ventilating livestock barns Manure piles Mushroom farms To manage conflict about farm practices, the Ontario government enacted the Farming and Food Production Protection Act (FFPPA). This act establishes the Normal Farm Practices Protection Board (NFPPB) to determine “normal farm practices”. When a person complains about odour or other nuisance from a particular farming practice, the board has the authority to hear the case and decide whether the practice is a “normal farm practice”. If it is, the farmer is protected from any legal action regarding that practice.When people make complaints about farm practices, a regional agricultural engineer or environmental specialist from OMAFRA’s Environmental Management Branch works with all parties involved to resolve the conflict. The board requires that any complaint go through this conflict resolution process before it comes to a hearing.Each year, through the conflict resolution process, OMAFRA staff have resolved the vast majority of complaints. In 2015-16, only twelve of the 107 cases resulted in hearings before the board. Of these, only two were odour cases involving multiple nuisances such as noise, dust and flies. Thus, while odours remain the biggest cause of complaints about farm practices, OMAFRA staff working through the conflict resolution process has proved very effective in dealing with them.
I first heard the word ‘sustainable’ in university many moons ago. It seemed academic, and the right thing to do as we studied agriculture and how to feed the world in the future. Then I didn’t hear that word for about a decade.
I recently went back to school to join an ethical food choice discussion at a high school in our nation’s capital. Although it jarred me on some levels, it inspired me on many more. I’m sharing this experience as just one example of thousands like it that are happening online, in boardrooms and conversations about food across Canada every single day.
The chicken industry, along with foodservice and retail, has been in the sights of vegan activists. Their mission, it seems, is to misinform and manipulate Canadians about how we do our work.
Last year the industry saw an irksome trend endure. Global food companies, in response to pressure from deceptive activist groups, continued to roll out different poultry welfare policies.
Begin with the end in mind. This simple leadership mantra captures the essence of the Canadian Centre for Food Integrity (CCFI) research on understanding Canadians’ expectations regarding trust and transparency in our food and how it’s produced. Before investing millions in changing farm and food production practices or in efforts to communicate with the public, it’s important to have a solid understanding of public perceptions and concerns. To be most effective, this investment should be part of a long-term game plan with proactive, collaborative thinking.  
Across Canada, breakfast sandwich sales are exploding. And Canadians’ love for eggs is booming right along with it.More and more restaurant chains across the country are offering all-day breakfast menu items, and Canadians are getting inspired in the kitchen with their own creations. And the results are amazing.After implementing all-day breakfast, the sale of egg meals at McDonald’s rose 25 per cent in the first year...that’s over 35 million more eggs!Breakfast sandwiches are one part of an incredible trend—more and more Canadians are eating and enjoying the nutritional benefits of eggs. We’ve seen consistent sales growth in eggs over the past 11 years. In fact, in 2017 alone, egg sales increased by 4.1 per cent across the country. | READ MORE
Several years ago, the people at Egg Farmers of Canada (EFC) noticed a trend. In an increasingly urbanized society, fewer people had a direct connection to where their food came from. Despite this shift, the organization’s CEO Tim Lambert noticed younger Canadians were more interested in where their food came from. They appeared particularly concerned about the environmental impact of production.
It wasn’t exactly the kind of product launch that consumers – and, for that matter, retailers – were expecting. Almost two years after receiving government approval to supply Ontario-sourced kosher chickens, Premier Kosher introduced its free-range birds in 50-pound boxes that were shipped directly to customers, bypassing retailers entirely – at least for now.The move came only a few weeks after Premier Kosher received final government approval for its production plant in Abingdon, Ont., and only a few weeks before the Passover season, the busiest time of year for kosher food retailers. | For the full story, CLICK HERE.
The idea of using a biological system to produce products for human use is not new. Since civilization began, humans have harnessed bacteria, yeast and more to produce alcoholic drinks, fermented foods and, later on, things like silk and insulin.
How time flies – it’s been a year since two major fast food chains introduced all-day breakfast (ADB) in Canada.
There is hardly a month that goes by without a new story on cultured meat or plant-based products that look, smell, cook and taste just like meat. Commercialization of both types of foods is moving forward.
Chicken Farmers of Canada is proud to announce the election of the 2018 executive committee. The elections followed the annual general meeting and the 15-member board of directors, made up of farmers and other stakeholders from the chicken industry, has chosen the following representatives:Benoît Fontaine, Chair (Stanbridge Station, Quebec)Hailing from Stanbridge Station, Quebec, Benoît Fontaine, chair of Chicken Farmers of Canada, most recently served as the first vice-chair of the executive committee. He first joined the board of directors in 2013 as an alternate, and became the Quebec director in 2014. He farms in the Lac Champlain area and raises 5.5 million kg of chicken and 500,000 kg of turkey. A former high school Canadian history teacher, and second generation chicken farmer, Benoît has also been heavily involved in the Union des producteurs agricoles since 1999. Benoît has also served on Chicken Farmers of Canada’s policy committee and the production committee.Derek Janzen, first Vice-Chair (Aldergrove, British Columbia)Derek Janzen, first vice-chair, and his wife Rhonda have farmed in the Fraser Valley since 1998. They currently produce 1.4 million Kg’s of chicken annually and manage 22,000 commercial laying hens. Prior to farming, Derek worked for B.C.’s largest poultry processor for nearly nine years. He worked his way up from driving delivery truck to sales and marketing where he took the position of Major Accounts Manager. Derek’s experience in the processing industry has served him well with his board involvement. Derek has held various positions on a variety of boards including chair of the B.C. Egg Producers Association and also was appointed by the Minister of Agriculture as a member of the Farm Industry Review Board, B.C.’s supervisory board. Derek enjoys being involved in the industry and is excited to represent B.C. at the Chicken Farmers of Canada.Nick de Graaf, 2nd Vice-Chair (Port Williams, Nova Scotia)Nick de Graaf is a third-generation poultry farmer in the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia operating the farm founded by his Dutch grandfather in the early 1960’s. Today the farm produces more than 660,000 chickens, and 67,000 turkeys per year. Nick is also part of Innovative Poultry Group (IPG). IPG farms 55,000 broiler breeders and owns Maritime Chicks, a new, state-of-the-art hatchery employing the HatchCare system. In addition to poultry, Nick grows more than 1,600 acres of wheat, corn and soybeans. He is self-sufficient in the production of corn and soybeans for his on-farm feed mill where he processes poultry feeds for his own flocks. Nick is in his 8th year as a director with Chicken Farmers of Nova Scotia. He has participated in Chicken Farmers of Canada as an alternate director and as a member of the policy committee. Nick and his wife, Trudy, have three children and two grandchildren.Tim Klompmaker, Executive Member (Norwood, Ontario)Tim Klompmaker lives in Norwood, Ontario and was elected to the Chicken Farmers of Canada Board in 2017. Tim started farming in 1984 along with his wife Annette and his three sons. He is a third generation chicken farmer with the fourth generation already in place and running chicken farms of their own. Tim served as a district committee representative for Chicken Farmers of Ontario before being elected to the Ontario Board in 2000. He served as CFC alternate representative for Ontario from 2012 to 2013, and has represented Ontario on the CFC Production Committee, the AMU Working Committee, and at NFACC. He has also served as first vice-chair of Chicken Farmers of Ontario.The Board looks forward to continuing its work together, ensuring that Canada’s chicken industry continues to deliver on consumer expectations for excellence. With an eye to the future, Chicken Farmers of Canada will work with all its partners, ensuring clear, common goals for the future, and setting a solid path and purpose for all stakeholders, and for generations of chicken farmers to come.Canadians want Canadian chicken, so we deliver them fresh, locally-raised food, just the way they like it. Our farmers are a stabilizing force in rural Canada, where they can – and do – reinvest with confidence in their communities, but their contribution is much wider. In sum, we are part of Canada’s economic solution, and do so without subsidies, and are very proud of both.Chicken Farmers of Canada introduced its “Raised by a Canadian Farmer” brand in 2013 to showcase the commitment of farmers to provide families with nutritious chicken raised to the highest standards of care, quality and freshness.People care deeply about their food, about knowing where it comes from and that what they’re serving to their family and friends is of the highest quality; our farmers and their families are no different. So, when we say that the Canadian chicken industry is good for Canadians, it’s because we know that we’re raising our chickens to the highest standards: yours.
November 2, 2017, Ottawa, Ont. – The final step in concluding a new Federal Provincial Agreement for Chicken (FPA) was taken earlier this week. On October 31st, Farm Products Council of Canada determined that Governor-in-Council approval is not required for the new FPA.This brings to close more than eight years of discussions and negotiations to arrive at a new allocation methodology that is not only supported by all federal and provincial signatories, but also delivers on the requirements of the Farm Products Agencies Act for Chicken Farmers of Canada (CFC) to take comparative advantage into account when allocating production growth.The new FPA provides increased certainty to all industry stakeholders. "With it, we have the tools we need to grow, develop and thrive," Benoît Fontaine, chair of Chicken Farmers of Canada, added in a press release. "This FPA marks our industry's total commitment to a dynamic and always evolving supply management system for chicken."With the new FPA in hand, today, the Canadian chicken industry welcomed back Alberta Chicken Producers into the agreement, bringing all provinces back into the system. Alberta had withdrawn from the FPA in 2013, but continued to work at CFC on the modernization of the allocation system to ensure that Canadians from coast to coast continue to enjoy a steady supply of fresh, high-quality, Canadian-grown chicken."Our focus on responding quickly to the changing demands of consumers in every province, and to meeting all our challenges, are among the many reasons we are a Canadian success story," Fontaine said. "We're excited to have all our provinces back on board.""The agreement provides strength to the Canadian chicken industry and shows that we can work together to evolve our supply management system for the benefit of all," CFC executive director Michael Laliberté added.Supply management is a uniquely Canadian response to market volatility in a perishable product market. Consumer demand is rarely static. It changes as a result of demographic shifts, immigration from countries with different food preferences, and new science related to human health and nutrition.This latest FPA is paramount to the Canadian chicken industry's continued strategic growth. The active support and participation of the federal and provincial governments enhances the nation's international trade position, backing Canada'sright to use the marketing systems of its choice.
When you think about the connection between chickens and history you might think about how feed efficiency has increased or how birds have changed through genetic selection. But for Benoît Fontaine, his version of the connection of poultry to history goes a lot deeper than that.Rooted in historyFontaine, a second-generation turkey and chicken producer, was at one point in his career a Canadian history teacher. For 10 years after graduating from the Université du Québec à Montréal in 1998, he taught high school, rising to become the principal for two years while still actively farming.This Quebec poultry producer is now the chair of the Chicken Farmers of Canada (CFC), elected in November 2016, only the second chair to hail from La Belle Province.Now, whether he’s at a poultry industry gathering or talking to politicians, he is able to connect by talking history and entertaining. As a history buff, he manages to find a local story to tell wherever he goes.“Do you know why the carpets in the House of Commons are green?” he asked. The green carpet is the same as that used in the House of Commons in England for over 300 years, representing the colour of fields; a red carpet would symbolize royal power. “The MP’s appreciate this information,” Fontaine says.Youth on the farmThat green carpet is a long way from his farm where he grew up in St-Ignace de Stanbridge. Benoît’s chores after getting off the school bus included feeding and watering turkeys at their home farm, cultivating an appreciation of both birds and work involved with farming. His parents had been raising turkeys since 1970. Thus, when he later found himself with an empty barn and an opportunity to obtain quota it was an easy decision to go ahead.Thriving businessWhen Fontaine stepped down from his teaching job he began farming full time. Ferme Avicole B. Fontaine Inc. is nestled in the winery region close to Lac Champlain, an area Fontaine claims is the warmest spot in Quebec. One farm in Notre-Dame de Stanbridge, that Fontaine purchased in 2005, sits so close to the American border that he can see the U.S. from his window; another farm, purchased in 2010, is in nearby Pike River.With the help of seven employees he will produce 1.8 million chickens per year and one million kilograms of turkey in a total of eight three-storey barns. With no family of his own, Fontaine relies on one 24-year-old manager, Pascal Monnier, to look after the farm while he’s on the road. “He has his diploma in agriculture and has his own quota,” says Fontaine, who rests easy knowing that the farm is in good hands while he may spend up to 150 nights a year away from home as the CFC chair.   View the embedded image gallery online at: https://www.canadianpoultrymag.com/index.php?option=com_k2&Itemid=34&lang=en&layout=latest&view=latest#sigProGalleriade0c60cfa8 GlobetrotterThat may seem like a lot of time to spend on the road, but Fontaine does enjoy travelling. In addition to the CFC miles, this year he will visit Finland; last year it was Kenya for the World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial Conference, where he got to visit the house used in the filming of Out of Africa. Before that it was Hawaii on Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) business, allowing him to visit Pearl Harbor, an experience that helped him to understand the involvement of the U.S. in World War II. “Everything is linked with history,” says Fontaine, who is already eyeing up retirement trips that will involve the study of human history.Back at home Fontaine will talk to his parents, his mentors, Marcel Fontaine and Lucille Gagné, once a week. Their answers will guide him in questions of what to say or not to say or how to   manage the farm. As he humbly admits, “You cannot buy experience. I have some, but my father has more.”The farm issues they both face have changed, with Fontaine listing animal welfare along with the new ways of rearing chickens, with the ‘new norms’ involving issues such as changing bird density or new water systems.Industry engagementHis rise through the ranks of industry boards began six months after he bought his first quota, starting with his local district, moving quickly through to first vice-chair, then provincially to second vice-chair in 2012. Fontaine has been heavily involved in the Union des producteurs agricoles since 1999 and has served on both CFC’s policy and production committees.Now, as CFC chair, he knows he must remain neutral, speaking on behalf of all Canadians, not just Quebec. He also knows that policy discussions will always go down better with a good story. Fontaine’s command of the English language is already good but he continues to improve through taking courses. With his teaching background he brings communication and teamwork skills to his board positions; his two years as a school principal taught him leadership skills and how to bring forth new ideas with an open mind and an open ear.At the national board level, he sees free trade as the number one issue. Fontaine points to 14 free trade agreements that have already been signed with 51 countries as proof that supply management is stronger than ever. “They haven’t touched supply management yet; even with the TPP we got a great deal. The government was listening to us.”As he looks to the future he predicts the greatest challenge will be for chicken to remain a Canadian favourite with consumers. With Olympic enthusiasm, he says he wants poultry to remain on the top step of the podium. “Keep the flame burning; keep the love of Canadian products. As long as we stay there, we succeed.”
July 31, 2017, Winnipeg, Man. - Direct Farm Manitoba is pleased with a ruling by the Manitoba Farm Products Marketing Council (MFPMC) earlier this month that orders Manitoba Chicken Producers (MCP) to not charge extra administrative fees for a decade among those participating in its new specialty chicken quota system.DFM co-ordinated an appeal on behalf of three specialty chicken producers who would have been affected by the additional expense.DFM voiced numerous concerns with MCP’s new program after it was rolled out last year, but ultimately launched an appeal on the specific grounds that the program’s new fees for participation would force those already raising specialty chicken to either pay more to keep producing, or produce less. READ MORE 
April 4, 2017, Ottawa, Ont – Chicken Farmers of Canada recently announced the outcome the 2017 election for its executive committee. The elections followed the annual general meeting and the 15-member board of directors, made up of farmers and other stakeholders from the chicken industry, has chosen the following representatives: Benoît Fontaine, chairHailing from Stanbridge Station, Quebec, Benoît Fontaine most recently served as the first vice-chair of the executive committee. He first joined the board of directors in 2013 as an alternate, and became the Quebec director in 2014. He farms in the Lac Champlain area and raises chicken and turkeys. A former high school Canadian history teacher, and second-generation chicken farmer, Benoît has also been heavily involved in the Union des producteurs agricoles since 1999. Benoît has also served on Chicken Farmers of Canada's policy committee and the production committee.Derek Janzen, first vice-chair Derek Janzen and his wife, Rhonda, have farmed in the Fraser Valley since 1998. They currently produce 1.4 million kgs of chicken annually and manage 22,000 commercial laying hens. Prior to farming, Derek worked for B.C.'s largest poultry processor for nearly nine years. He worked his way up from driving delivery truck to sales and marketing where he took the position of major accounts manager. Derek's experience in the processing industry has served him well with his board involvement. Derek has held various positions on a variety of boards including chair of the B.C. Egg Producers Association and also was appointed by the Minister of Agriculture as a member of the Farm Industry Review Board, B.C.'s supervisory board. Derek enjoys being involved in the industry and is excited to represent B.C. at the Chicken Farmers of Canada. Nick de Graaf, second vice-chairNick de Graaf is a third-generation poultry farmer in the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia, operating the farm founded by his Dutch grandfather in the early 1960s. Today, the farm produces more than 660,000 chickens, and 67,000 turkeys per year. Nick is also part of Innovative Poultry Group (IPG). IPG farms 55,000 broiler breeders and owns Maritime Chicks, a new, state-of-the-art hatchery employing the HatchCare system. In addition to poultry, Nick grows more than 1,600 acres of wheat, corn and soybeans. He is self-sufficient in the production of corn and soybeans for his on-farm feed mill where he processes poultry feeds for his own flocks. Nick is in his eighth year as a director with Chicken Farmers of Nova Scotia. He has participated in Chicken Farmers of Canada as an alternate director and as a member of the policy committee. Nick and his wife, Trudy, have three children and two grandchildren. Tim Klompmaker, executive member Tim Klompmaker lives in Norwood, Ontario, and was elected to the Chicken Farmers of Canada board in 2017. Tim started farming in 1984 along with his wife, Annette, and his three sons. He is a third-generation chicken farmer with the fourth-generation already in place and running chicken farms of their own. Tim served as a district committee representative for Chicken Farmers of Ontario before being elected to the Ontario board in 2000. He served as CFC alternate representative for Ontario from 2012-2013, and has represented Ontario on the CFC production committee, the AMU working committee, and at NFACC. He has also served as first vice-chair of Chicken Farmers of Ontario. The board looks forward to continuing its work together, ensuring that Canada's chicken industry continues to deliver on consumer expectations for excellence. With an eye to the future, Chicken Farmers of Canada will work with all its partners, ensuring clear, common goals for the future, and setting a solid path and purpose for all stakeholders, and for generations of chicken farmers to come. Canadians want Canadian chicken, so we deliver them fresh, locally-raised food, just the way they like it. Our farmers are a stabilizing force in rural Canada, where they can – and do – reinvest with confidence in their communities, but their contribution is much wider. In sum, we are part of Canada's economic solution, and do so without subsidies, and are very proud of both. Chicken Farmers of Canada introduced its "Raised by a Canadian Farmer" brand in 2013 to showcase the commitment of farmers to provide families with nutritious chicken raised to the highest standards of care, quality and freshness.
March 27, 2017, Ottawa, Ont – Egg Farmers of Canada is pleased to announce Roger Pelissero of Ontario as its new chairman following his election at the 44th Annual General Meeting in Ottawa. Pelissero is a third generation egg farmer from St. Ann’s, Ont. Most recently, he served on the EFC executive committee as first vice chair. He has been a member of many board appointed committees including cost of production, marketing and nutrition, and production management. Pelissero was first elected to the EFC board of directors in 2012 as the Egg Farmers of Ontario (EFO) representative. He currently serves on the EFO board of directors representing Zone 4 and is also a member of EFO’s executive committee. In addition to Pelissero’s election as chairman, the EFC board elected directors John Penner from the Northwest Territories as first vice chair, Glen Jennings of Nova Scotia as second vice chair and Emmanuel Destrijker of Quebec to the executive committee. The EFC board of directors would like to thank Peter Clarke for his many years of dedication, leadership and service as EFC chairman between 2011 and 2016. He is a well-respected member of Canada’s agriculture community and a member of the Order of Nova Scotia. He was first elected to the EFC board in 1995 representing Nova Scotia and has served on numerous committees including audit, budget, cost of production, research, production management, and executive as well as leading project teams which made progressive changes to the egg industry in Canada and abroad.
Chicken Farmers of Ontario (CFO) is providing a second Ontario chicken processor with a new and unique opportunity to supply smaller-sized chickens, ‘Small Whole Birds’, aimed at meeting the demands of distinct Ontario consumer markets, including the increasingly popular Portuguese barbecue restaurants or ‘churrasqueiras’.“Earlier this year, CFO strengthened its growing suite of processing programs, which are designed to meet new and emerging markets and satisfy the complex demands of today’s consumers,” said Ed Benjamins, chair, Chicken Farmers of Ontario. “With the introduction of CFO’s Small Whole Bird Supply Program, Ontarians can look forward to even more chicken choices on retail shelves, in restaurants and foodservice establishments across the province,” stated Benjamins.The announcement welcomes a second Ontario processor into this new program. Sure Fresh Foods Inc., of Bradford, Ont., is planning to start processing ‘Small Whole Birds’ for the Portuguese barbeque market in early fall of 2018.“CFO is pleased to announce that Sure Fresh Foods will target the needs of a specific market which is intended to further enhance the ability of our industry to meet consumer demand for Premium Ontario Chicken,” said Rob Dougans, president & CEO of CFO. “All of our processor programs are designed with the consumer in mind and are developed through strategic consultation across the chicken industry value chain.”CFO’s Small Whole Bird Supply Program was established with the purpose of meeting the demands of consumer markets requiring chickens that are smaller than what is traditionally grown and processed in Ontario (approximately 1.7 kg versus 2.2 kg). Serving these distinct markets may also require different processing equipment than is used in the mainstream chicken industry to accommodate the smaller size of the bird.To learn more about how the chicken industry is committed to providing Ontarians with even more choice, check out some of the other Chicken Farmers of Ontario Programs for Ontario Processors by clicking here.
August 29, 2017, U.S. - Chlorinated chicken– or chlorine-washed chicken – simply means that chicken was rinsed with chlorinated water; chlorine is not present in the meat. Just as chlorine helps make drinking water safe, it can help remove potentially harmful bacteria from raw chicken.Numerous studies and research have confirmed that the use of chlorinated water to chill and clean chicken is safe and effective. Chlorine-washed chicken does not pose any human health concerns and it is not present in the final product.Hypochlorus (i.e. chlorine) is a common disinfectant used in water treatment and food processing worldwide. Although it is proven safe, a lot of U.S. plants have moved away from chlorinated water in their chilling systems and rinses, opting for alternatives.The National Chicken Council would estimate that chlorine is used in chilling systems and rinses in about 20-25 per cent of processing plants in the U.S., as a lot of U.S. plants have moved away from its use. Most of the chlorine that is used in the industry is used for cleaning and sanitizing processing equipment.All chicken produced in the U.S. is closely monitored and inspected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). READ MORE
July 7, 2017 - Given the high value of chicken breast meat in many markets, poultry processors need to ensure that any factors that may reduce product quality are thoroughly addressed.Issues affecting breast meat quality can arise pre-slaughter and during processing, and there are several key areas that need to be properly functioning if losses are to be minimized. Extreme temperatures during transport and while waiting at the plant pre-slaughter can result in dehydration and other metabolic conditions, affecting the health and survival rate of birds, and also meat quality. READ MORE 
June 22, U.S. – Tyson Foods Inc. will test a new way to render chickens unconscious before slaughter, the company said, in the latest sign that heightened concerns about animal welfare are affecting U.S. meat processors.Within the next year, Tyson, the biggest U.S. chicken company, will launch a pilot program at two processing plants to use gas instead of electricity to stun birds before they are killed.Poultry companies render birds unconscious prior to slaughter so they do not feel pain and have increasingly explored gas as a potentially more humane option. Consumers and some restaurants have also called for more humane practices.Tyson's program "is a very significant step forward for us in understanding if this is scalable," Justin Whitmore, chief sustainability officer, said in an interview.The project is part of a broader shift in production practices in the U.S. poultry industry, in which companies have also backed away from antibiotics due to health concerns. Such changes generally increase production costs.Tyson also announced a new video monitoring system to ensure live chickens are handled properly, after saying last year that it had not done enough to stop the mistreatment of animals.Whitmore declined to discuss costs of Tyson's gas stunning project.In January, U.S. chicken processor Pilgrim's Pride Corp touted GNP Company's use of gas stunning when it paid $350 million to buy the smaller rival.In GNP's system, birds were lowered into a sealed tunnel in specially designed modules where the amount of carbon dioxide gradually rose to 70 percent from 5 percent, according to the company. In minutes, the birds passed out as carbon dioxide displaced oxygen in the air.With gas stunning, chickens are unconscious when they are shackled for slaughter. Some companies view this as more humane than stunning them afterward with electricity.Perdue Farms, another rival, is retrofitting a Delaware plant to stun chickens with gas, instead of electricity, and expects it to be operational by year's end, spokeswoman Andrea Staub said. The company has a goal to eventually use the method at all processing facilities.Panera Bread Co, food service company Sodexo and Hormel Foods Corp's Applegate brand have each said they want to buy chicken from U.S. birds rendered unconscious by a multi-step gas stunning process by 2024.McDonald's Corp is evaluating the method, spokeswoman Becca Hary said, after failing in 2009 to find conclusive evidence that it was better for birds.
May 26, 2017, San Diego, Cali. - PURE Bioscience, Inc., creator of the patented non-toxic silver dihydrogen citrate antimicrobial, announced that the company has received final acknowledgement from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that its Food Contact Notification (FCN) for use of PURE Control® in raw poultry processing to reduce pathogens became effective last week.FDA approved PURE Control antimicrobial is applied directly onto raw poultry carcasses, parts and organs as a spray or dip during processing to eliminate pathogens causing foodborne illness, including Salmonella.PURE is not aware of any equally effective, lower toxicity solution to eliminate Salmonella in poultry processing – and believes PURE Control is the breakthrough solution the poultry industry has been seeking.SDC is distinguished by the fact that it is both more effective and non-toxic. Currently used poultry processing intervention chemistries, most notably Peracetic acid (or PAA), are highly toxic, irritants to users, negatively impact the environment, are corrosive to equipment, and have a negative yield impact.The FCN for PURE Control will be added to the list of effective notifications for FCNs, which is available on the FDA website: http://www.fda.gov/Food/IngredientsPackagingLabeling/PackagingFCS/Notifications/default.htm.As previously announced on April 27, 2017, the FDA had completed its review of the safety and efficacy of the proposed use of SDC in concentrations up to 160 PPM as a raw poultry processing aid, and set an effective date of May 18, 2017.PURE will be initiating an in-plant raw poultry processing trial in which SDC-based PURE Control will be spray applied to whole chicken carcasses during Online Reprocessing (OLR).The USDA has already approved PURE Control for use in pre-OLR and post chill poultry processing. This trial is now expected to be completed by early calendar Q3. PURE has just received the necessary scheduling clearances from the plant and the local FSIS inspector. The trial will be conducted following the protocol proposed by PURE and approved by the USDA-FSIS, and will be monitored by FSIS inspection personnel in the plant. Assuming a successful plant trial, and that no additional trials are required by the USDA, PURE anticipates that the USDA-FSIS will issue a “Letter of No Objection” in approximately 4-6 weeks after completion of the trial, stating that PURE Control is approved for use in OLR applications and list SDC as an approved poultry processing aid in Attachment 1 of the FSIS Directive 7120.1 Table 3. Upon receipt of the “Letter of No Objection,” PURE can immediately commercialize PURE Control for OLR applications and begin to market PURE Control as a superior raw poultry processing aid into the +$350M U.S. market.
April 18, 2017, Peterborough, Ont. – The government of Ontario has announced plans to grow opportunities for local poultry through the Greenbelt Fund. The Greenbelt Fund will support 24 new projects across Ontario, totalling over $830,000 in new investments through the province's Local Food Investment Fund program. One of the 24 projects is the Reiche Meat Products Ltd., which will see $14,550 put towards establishing a poultry processing facility in Renfrew County. The availability of an abattoir in Renfrew County will allow existing small-scale poultry farms to scale up and meet growing demand for local poultry at farmers' markets and in stores. The project is expected to increase local food sales by $100,000 and bring 20 new farmers to market. Since 2010, the Greenbelt Fund has seen a 13:1 return on its investment in local food projects. READ MORE Other projects include:Poechman Family Farms Microgreens for Pastured Eggs ($38,100) Poechman Family Farms will invest in significant changes to its barn to improve quality of life for its hens as well as quality and flavour of its eggs, meeting consumer demand for humane eggs. The project will involve the introduction of a new perch for the hens, and specially grown greenhouse microgreens for the hens' diet. The pilot will allow Poechman Family Farms to share learnings with other egg farmers in the Organic Meadows Co-Operative and the Yorkshire Valley Farms distribution family. National Farmers Union – Ontario Building a Network of Local Food Advocates ($32,675) The National Farmers Union – Ontario will enhance local food literacy across the province by building a network of local food advocates across a number of sectors, including educators, healthcare providers, faith communities, artists, academics, outdoors professionals, and youth. The NFU will create tailored local food information material for the different advocates and create a directory of local food advocates. Victorian Order of Nurses – Windsor Essex Promoting Local Food Literacy & Increasing Local Food Consumption in Southwestern Ontario Schools ($18,988) The Victorian Order of Nurses delivers school breakfast and snack programs that feed over 100,000 students every year. This project will develop local food literacy awareness materials for students and parents, to accompany increased local food served through these programs. Bayfield Berry Farm Increasing Processing of Ontario Fruit Juices, Cider, Preserves & Fruit Liqueurs ($37,250) Bayfield Berry Farm will expand their on-farm processing facility to meet growing demand for fruit juices, ciders, preserves and fruit liqueurs. The expansion will allow Bayfield Berry Farm to develop packaging and labelling, including requisite nutritional information, to sell their products to wholesale and retail markets, in addition to their on-farm shop. The project is expected to increase sales by up to 50% in their first year. Cauldron Kitchen Inc. Local Food Entrepreneurship Program ($5,000) Cauldron Kitchen will launch a Local Food Entrepreneurship Program for 4-8 participants to build the skills to create a viable local food business. Participants will have access to business development classes, mentoring and commercial kitchen use. Cohn Farms Processing and Distribution Hub ($72,500) Cohn Farms will be scaling up capacity at its processing and distribution hub to meet growing demand for local food, which is outpacing supply. The project is expected to double the number of farms supplying Cohn Farms to 25-30, create over 15 full-time equivalent jobs, and increase sales of local food by over $4m per year. Deep Roots Food Hub Grow West Carleton – Food Hub ($48,500) Deep Roots Food Hub will increase access to local produce by investing in a new co-packing approach for its roots cellar, providing storage, distribution and marketing opportunities to area farmers. In addition, the project will expand the Good Food Box program and include an "Eat West Carleton" promotional campaign.Earth Fresh Farms Increasing Access for Ontario's New Innovative White Potato ($42,900) Earth Fresh Farms will work with 9 Ontario growers to grow premium Polar White potatoes and extend the season for Ontario white potatoes. The project is expected to increase the market for Polar White, Ontario potatoes significantly, with increased sales of well over $1m a year. Ecological Farmers Association of Ontario Supporting Local Food Market Access for Ecological Growers Across Ontario ($14,475) The Ecological Farmers Association of Ontario will increase market access for small to mid-scale ecological producers by providing specialized training through workshops and farm tours, including selling to new markets (eg. Food hubs, retail, wholesale, farmers markets), on-farm value-added opportunities, and new and emerging markets (eg. World crops, heritage grains, ecological fruit). Farmersville Community Abattoir Farmersville Community Abattoir – Processing Equipment ($30,141) Farmersville Community Abattoir is a new, not-for-profit initiative to establish a community-owned abattoir to meet the needs of the farming communities in Leeds and Grenville, Frontenac, Lanark and Ottawa-Carleton. By establishing a community-owned facility, Farmersville Community Abattoir will help ensure the long-term viability of the agricultural system in Eastern Ontario for 1,300 farmers in the region and increase local food sales by $240,000. Farms at Work – Tides Canada Initiatives Expanding Impact and Sustainability of Local Food Month in Peterborough ($15,000) Farms at Work will expand the impact and improve the sustainability of Peterborough Local Food Month, by working in partnership with Transition Town Peterborough to facilitate local food-related workshops, events and tours throughout September and culminating in the Purple Onion Festival. Flanagan Foodservice Homegrown – Local Food Project ($42,840) Flanagan Foodservice is Canada's largest family-owned foodservice distributor and will increase sales of Ontario foods by increasing its local food offerings, improving traceability, and investing in a promotional campaign to improve awareness of Ontario food available to its customers. The project is expected to increase local food sales by $1 million in 2017.Greenhouses Canada Northern Ontario Mobile Growing Facility ($52,283) Greenhouses Canada will purchase a mobile "grow truck" to serve as an indoor demonstration and training site, and allow for transportation of fresh produce to remote northern communities (including on seasonal ice roads). The project is expected to increase local food sales by $117,000. Halton Healthcare Good For You, Locally Grown – Phase 2 ($51,500) Halton Healthcare will build on the progress made to increase local food served in its hospitals by working with farmers, manufacturers and other industry colleagues to develop recipes using Ontario food that meet the nutritional needs of patients. The project will also establish branding to identify local food choices to patients, as well as a marketing campaign to promote the local food offerings at Halton Healthcare facilities. Len & Patti's Butcher Block Improved Production Efficiency to Increase Ontario Raised Pork, Beef, Lamb, Elk & Goat ($46,438) To meet growing demand for Ontario raised meats, Len & Patti's Butcher Block will invest in modernized machinery to increase production capacity. The project will include a new smoke house, tumbler, sausage stuffer, and patty machine. The increase in production capacity is expected to increase the sale of local meat by $2.5 million by the end of 2017.Local Line Inc. Local Line Food Hub Project ($28,316) Local Line will build custom local food hub software for Ontario food hubs, based on a market assessment of the needs of Ontario's existing food hubs. The platform will leverage existing Local Line marketplace and reporting software to create easy-to-use software for new and established local food hubs. Munye Kitchens Increasing Local Food Outreach – Multi-Ethnic African Communities & Beyond ($23,495) Munye Kitchens will create a local food guide for multi-ethnic African communities to increase awareness of locally-grown foods relevant to the African communities and identify where Ontario-grown produce can be purchased. The project will also educate consumers on how to use African crops like okra and callaloo, grown in Ontario and the Greenbelt. Muskoka Foundry Market Assessment for the Development of a Local Food Hub ($30,000) Muskoka Foundry will establish a new aggregated local food hub in Northern Ontario in Bracebridge's historic Foundry building. The space will include 10 permanent retail spots for agri-food processors, and provide mentorship opportunities for new processors and producers through an additional 10-15 temporary vendor stalls.  The project is expected to increase local food sales by $1.5m per year. Neyaashiing Smoked Fish Increasing Access for Local Neyaashiing Smoked Fish Products ($13,250) Neyaashiing Smoked Fish will invest in upgrades to its smoking facility to improve food preparation, food safety and production output. This will allow Neyaashiing Smoked Fish to increase access to new markets for smoked fish sourced and processed in First Nations communities, both through retail and wholesale market channels. Select Food Products Implementation of New Cooking Line to Increase Production Capabilities and Access the Ontario Market ($75,000) Select Food Products has made a significant investment in a new cooking and production line in order to deliver a made-in-Ontario with Ontario ingredients French's Ketchup. The project will nearly triple production capacity for Select and help French's to execute on its commitment to make and source ketchup in Canada.   Wendy's Mobile Market Season-Extension, Value-Adding Processing and Services ($71,538) Wendy's Mobile Market will retrofit a cow barn into a local food processing and storage facility to offer season-extending and value-added processing to local farmers. The facility will create new processed products including jams, jellies, preserves, dried fruit, and frozen entrees. West Niagara Agricultural Society Niagara 4-H Local Food Booth ($14,463) West Niagara Agricultural Society will partner with Niagara 4-H to purchase a road-worthy trailer for the volunteers of the 4-H club to bring to food and agricultural events throughout the region. The trailer will allow the 4-H to introduce their local food products to urban and near-urban students who might not otherwise be exposed to local food offerings. Wickens Lake Sunshine Greenhouse Retrofit Extension – Northern Ontario ($9,942) Wickens Lake Sunshine will invest in a retrofit and extension of its existing hydroponics greenhouse to extend the farms' growing season and increase capacity. Once the upgrades are complete, Wickens Lake Sunshine will partner with Open Roads Public School and the Cloverbelt Local Food Co-Op to supply produce for the school's salad bar program, bringing more local, nutritious food to students.

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