Does Canada’s food processing industry face death by regulation?

The trust gap between industry and government has grown, and they’re butting heads more frequently

Does Canada’s food processing industry face death by regulation?Food industries need to be regulated. But the delicate balance between protecting the public and supporting industrial growth may have reached a tipping point in Canada. In the Western world, governments successfully play the anti-business card by implementing regulations so consumers feel someone is looking out for them. But governments are also flirting with populist…

Canada can only lose in a trade war with China

From canola to peas and soybeans, the Chinese are using our commodities as bargaining chips in a diplomatic dispute

Canada can only lose in a trade war with ChinaCanola was first, and now peas and soybeans. It was highly predictable. And given how things have progressed over the last five months, the situation can only escalate. The Canadian government has pledged to help farmers affected by our epic spat with China. But other than offering cash or support to develop new markets for…

The Senate at its best – and worst – in the fight to protect children

How Canada's upper house can work across party lines and stop the marketing of junk food to kids

The Senate at its best – and worst – in the fight to protect childrenBy Tom Warshawski Childhood Obesity Foundation and Yves Savoie Heart & Stroke The crops grown by Canadian farmers and the livestock they raise are of the highest quality. In many cases, however, when these healthy foods are industrially processed, harmful amounts of salt, sugar and saturated fat are added. Consumption of excessive quantities of these…

Replacing plastic packaging at the grocery store

Metro plans to let customers bring their own containers to stores in Quebec. You can bet other retailers will follow suit

Replacing plastic packaging at the grocery storeMetro announced recently that it would become the first major grocery store chain in the country to allow customers to bring their own reusable containers for packaging of individual products. It's a significant step forward for the industry, but it comes with risks. The policy, which only applies in Quebec, will take effect on April…

Maple Leaf Foods, U.S.A.?

The iconic Canadian brand is expanding south of the border. The decision makes perfect sense and national dithering is to blame

Maple Leaf Foods, U.S.A.?Maple Leaf Foods, the largest pork processor in the country, has opted to build its new meatless plant south of the border. Unfortunately, the decision makes perfect sense. The iconic Canadian food company recently announced plans to spend US$310 million on a 230,000-square-foot processing plant in Indiana, where its Lightlife Burger and other products will…

Food inspectors getting tough on olive oil fraud

Food fraud affects many food categories, but stakes are a little higher with olive oil due to potential allergens in substitute ingredients

Food inspectors getting tough on olive oil fraudOlive production in Italy was hard hit last year due to an early frost. The country’s production dropped by 57 per cent. Greece and Portugal suffered similar fates, along with pest issues, and saw their production drop by 35 and 15 per cent, respectively. Short food supplies generate economically-motivated adulteration, that is, adding a inferior…

Front-and-centre nutrition alert labels on the way

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

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

Health Canada’s suggested new food labelling has limitations

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

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