GFM Network News


Ontario to insure for crop loss due to lack of labour

AgriInsurance offering hailed as a first in Canada

Ontario’s federal/provincial AgriInsurance program has been temporarily expanded to include coronavirus-related labour shortages as a covered cause for crop loss. Producers already enrolled in an eligible production insurance plan and hit by crop losses due to labour disruptions during the 2020 growing season will be able to get further insurance coverage, the Ontario and federal […] Read more



New pilot program for agri-food labour welcomed

Meat processors, greenhouse and mushroom growers, livestock producers get first crack at program

Ottawa — Federal officials hope a new pilot program will help stabilize ongoing labour issues in certain sectors of the agri-food value chain, while also providing citizenship to some foreign workers. Critics, however, contend more support is needed. “This pilot will help to ensure that farmers and processors have the much-needed skills, experience and labour […] Read more

Sollio outlines pandemic recovery plan for food sector

Support sought for automation, digitization, telecommunications

Ottawa — One of Canada’s largest agri-food companies has laid out a five-point industry recovery plan for federal politicians to consider. During a meeting Tuesday of the Commons standing committee on finance, the president of Quebec-based Sollio Co-operative Group shared plans to limit consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on the agrifood supply chain. Sollio employs […] Read more


Labour shortages persist, hort sector says

Horticultural Council warns sector output will drop for lack of workers, support

Ottawa — The Canadian Horticultural Council warns the federal government is using inaccurate numbers to describe how many temporary foreign workers are currently in the country. During a virtual meeting of the Commons standing committee on agriculture and agri-food, CHC president Brian Gilroy said food security continues to be threatened as a result of labour […] Read more

Cargill’s High River plant reopens with two slaughter shifts

Cutting line to resume Wednesday

Cargill’s southern Alberta beef packing plant, estimated to be responsible for over a third of Canada’s beef processing capacity, restarted Monday after a two-week COVID-19-related shutdown — but at a quicker pace than previously expected. The company said in a statement Monday it is resuming operations at the High River plant “with two shifts” in […] Read more


CFA seeks $2.6 billion in support for producers

Federal officials sought specific numbers from ag industry

Ottawa — Canada’s agriculture industry is seeking an initial $2.6 billion in COVID-19-related emergency relief funding from the federal government. Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) officials put in the ask to the federal government on Thursday. According to second vice-president Chris van den Heuvel, federal officials asked the CFA “to go and put hard numbers […] Read more

‘So far, so good,’ fertilizer sector says

Fertilizer Canada says vast majority of members have sufficient supplies in place or en route

There shouldn’t be any problems in supplying farmers with fertilizer this spring, says the organization representing manufacturers and distributors. “Our members are set to go,” Fertilizer Canada president and CEO Garth Whyte said in a news release Wednesday. “COVID-19 plans were quickly established at facilities, in conjunction with being declared an essential service, there was […] Read more


Foreign workers starting to arrive, livestock group says

About 2,000 have recently arrived, several thousand more here soon, feeders say

About 2,000 foreign workers have arrived in Canada in recent weeks and more should be here soon, an official with the National Cattle Feeders Association says. “There are about 4,000 more that are expected to arrive shortly, so the process is starting to work,” Janice Tranberg, the association’s president and CEO, said during a telephone […] Read more

Hiring labour for your farm

Ask the right questions, tell people about the job, and make sure you’re on the same page

At the Farm Forum Event in Saskatoon this winter, Leah Knibbs, a human resource management expert from Kn/a HR Consulting, gave farmers some tips on finding and keeping the right farm employee. Knibbs offered several pointers to use during job interviews. “The best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour,” she said. When you’re asking […] Read more