Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Pork Council urges TPP deal

The Canadian Pork Council is urging the federal government to take a leadership role to complete a trade deal with the Trans-Pacific Partnership members.

The council said it would welcome a deal that includes the terms of the agreement reached before U.S. President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the deal.

The council said in a news release that enhanced market access is of critical importance to Canadian producers and government’s efforts to expand economic ties in key Asia-Pacific markets are very much appreciated.

The Pacific region is experiencing significant economic growth and is also a region with an evolving need for agricultural products.

The Government of Canada has identified Asia-Pacific as a priority market and is working with the current Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) participants to assess alternatives.

“The value these markets bring to the trade of Canadian pork is key to the expansion of the industry,” said the council.

“While Japan is the most lucrative market, there is room to quickly improve Canadian market shares in Singapore, Vietnam and Malaysia.”

“Canada has the capacity and ability to complete this deal” the council said, adding “the status quo is not an option.

‘If a free trade agreement with Asia-Pacific nations is not implemented, Canada will face ongoing erosion of its ability to compete in Japan and other rapidly growing Asian markets.”

Guelph-Eramosa man faces arson charges

The Ontario Provincial Police have laid arson charges against a 28-year-old man living in Guelph-Eramosa township, which stretches northeast from Guelph to Halton Hills.

Police say he set six fires, one of them burning down a barn and house, four of them burning houses and two burning sheds. All of those fires were in the township.

The combined house and barn fire was Feb. 3 on Township Road 3.

The OPP is investigating a total of 24 fires deemed suspicious.

The man they charged is Justin Nicholas Jonathon Beal.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Lantz Meats wins appeal

Steven Lantz and his Lantz Meat Market in Durham has won an appeal, over-turning provincial meat inspection orders to stop processing meat and the seizure of meat products at his premises.

Lantz won by pointing to his status as a “food service premise” which is “any food premise where meals or meal portions are prepared for immediate consumption or sold or served in a form that will permit immediate consumption on the premises or elsewhere”.

He has consistently held permission from the local health unit to operate his seasonal business.

The tribunal ruled that Lantz indeed holds the exemption from provincial meat inspection.

Deere celebrates its centennial

Next year Deere and Co. will be celebrating 100 years of making tractors.

It has planned a number of museum displays, especially in its home state of Iowa, but also at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C.

 “John Deere is excited the Smithsonian has chosen to present one of Deere’s most iconic tractors in the context of technological change in America,” said Neil Dahlstrom, manager of corporate history and archives at John Deere.

“The display provides an opportunity to educate the public about the importance of agricultural innovation,” he said.

Deere has been producing innovations in farm machinery for nearly two centuries, but for the past 100 years, John Deere tractors have been the machines that best portrayed agricultural productivity, the company said in a news release.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Sheep agency has new name

The Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency is now Sheep Farmers of Ontario.

It aligns the organization, which speaks for more than 3,000 farmer-members, with marketing boards that have changed their names, such as Dairy Farmers of Ontario, Egg Farmers of Ontario and Chicken Farmers of Ontario.

Also at the recent annual meeting at Alliston, the association gave the Outstanding Shepherd of the Year award to Sandi Brock of Shepherd Creek Farm at Staffa.

She and her husband, Mark, who has been chairman of Grain Farmers of Ontario, and their children, Jack and Jessica, manage a flock of 500 ewes.

The Wand Family Livestock farm at Parry Sound won the Ontario Sheep Pasture Award.
Their 650-breeding-ewes flock is managed by Klaus, Ursula and Marcus Wand.

Also at the annual meeting, chairman Rob Scott and general manager Jennifer MacTavish introduced the EweGrow program designed to improve availability and quality of Ontario Lamb.

The benchmarks outlined in the program were developed with the help of Value Chain Management  International which undertook consultations with industry stakeholders.

The general aim of value-chain management is to align the interests of producers, processors and retailers so they all improve the quality and profitability of what they’re offering.