Robert Anderson and Jill Ebbett, fifth-generation potato farmers from East Glassville, N.B., were named Atlantic’s Outstanding Young Farmers for 2018.
This project, supported with a federal government investment of up to $4.5 million, includes the purchase and installation of new robotic equipment that will sort, grade, and pack more fresh potatoes in less time, enabling the company to improve their product quality, lower operational costs and develop new markets in the United States.
The company specializes in potato packaging and employs more than 125 people. The new plant is intended to give Patates Dolbec more flexibility and allows the company to track data in real-time for better decision making and a more organized workplace.
Three winners will receive scholarships toward furthering their education in agriculture. The award is designed to help students develop their communication skills by having the opportunity to voice their opinion on a subject related to farm management.
Students are asked to submit a multimedia presentation, a video, a Twitter chat, a blog or a Wiki, responding to the following question:
What aspects of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) should be addressed and amended in the current negotiations that will benefit Canada's agriculture sector?
All applications must be received by May 6, 2018. More information can be found here.
Federal, provincial and territorial (FPT) governments have been working collaboratively since 2016 to develop the next agricultural policy framework, the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. FPT governments consulted with a wide range of stakeholders, including producers, processors, small and emerging sectors to ensure the partnership was focused on the issues that matter most to them.
In addition, under the partnership, business risk management programs will continue to help producers manage significant risks that threaten the viability of their farm and are beyond their capacity to manage, the release states.
Ministers of Agriculture will convene inVancouverthis July for the annual meeting of federal, provincial and territorial ministers of agriculture.
Darryl Wallace of Cascumpec was elected as the new chairman of the board. Wallace and his family own and operate Wallace Family Farms. He represents the processing sector for the West Prince District on the board.
The new vice-chairman of the board is Jason Hayden of Pownal. Hayden and his family own and operate Eastern Farms Ltd. He represents the tablestock sector for the Charlottetown District.
The third member of the executive committee is John Hogg of Summerside who was elected secretary-treasurer. Hogg represents the processing sector for the Summerside District.
Also joining the board is Chad Robertson of Marvyn's Gardens. He will be representing the Tablestock sector for the Montague/Souris District.
The remaining board directors are Rodney Dingwell, Alex Docherty, Fulton Hamill, Glen Rayner, Wayne Townshend, David Francis, Mark MacMillan and Harris Callaghan. Ashton Perry of Elmsdale also participates in Board meetings as a representative of the PEI Young Farmers Association.
The Board also recognized the efforts of retiring Board member Owen Ching, tablestock representative for the Montague/Souris District, for his service over the past few years.
The Prince Edward Island Potato Board represents Island potato farmers and assists in growing the markets for PEI Potatoes locally, nationally, and internationally. The Board supports the production of high quality potatoes in an environmentally responsible manner, and is funding and conducting research in the areas of soil health, pest and disease management, quality and yield.
Directors are elected to represent four districts across the province, and each district is represented by a seed grower, a tablestock grower and a processing grower. Directors serve three year terms and are eligible for re-election to serve a second three year term. The directors serving on the PEI Potato Board are all from family farms with a heritage of growing potatoes and other crops for many years.
The project was filmed over the summer and early fall on different farms and field locations all over Prince Edward Island. It was directed and produced by Furrow Creative in Charlottetown PEI. The video features Island potato farmers and their families doing what they do best – growing the best quality potatoes in the world.
"We have so much to be proud of and thankful for in our potato industry here on PEI. It's the backbone of our economy, it's a major part of our culture and PEI wouldn't be the same without it." says Rodney Dingwell, Chairman of the PEI Potato Board.
The video will air primarily on local television with a digital campaign airing in the Ontario and Atlantic Canadian markets.
So what does it take to grow a quality potato? For the PEI Potato industry, it takes an Island! For more information, visit: https://www.peipotato.org/
The new facility, says a statement, is 88,000 sq. ft. and has a refrigerated potato storage capacity of 48 million pounds. The facility is split into two separate buildings with each building being 44,000 sq. ft.
Cavendish Farms is using the Tolsma System, which will allow the company to maintain consistent quality potatoes all year for use at its two processing plants on the island. For the full story, click here.
The new 35,000 square foot McCain Foods potato specialty production line addition represents the largest capacity expansion investment in Canada in nearly 10 years. The investment is reflective of the continued growth of the North American frozen potato and potato specialty segments in both the retail and food service businesses.
"Florenceville continues to be the French fry capital of the world. The official opening of the new production line reflects McCain's ongoing commitment to invest in the needs of our consumers and customers today, and also the company's focus towards future product development and innovation," said Jeff DeLapp, president, NA, McCain Foods Limited.
"During our 60th year of business, investment in the Florenceville-Bristol facility is a testament to the importance the community holds as the birthplace of McCain Foods," added DeLapp. "In addition to the more than 40 new jobs created, the construction build stimulated economic activity within the region, and an additional demand of 4,000 acres of potatoes is to be supplied to the facility by New Brunswick potato farmers."
A strong, sustainable Canadian business
Since the company was founded in 1957, McCain's leadership in the Canadian frozen potato market segment across all retail, food service and quick service restaurants (QSR) channels is undisputed.
All of McCain's potato products are made from 100% real potatoes grown on farms close to our facilities, which are spread across the country in New Brunswick, Manitoba, and Alberta.
"McCain is proud to partner with over 150 farming families across the country" stated Shai Altman, President, McCain Foods (Canada) "Our delicious products are a direct result of the quality potatoes grown by farmers, many of whom share a multi-generational partnership with McCain, some dating back to our start 60 years ago."
For the past 60 years, McCain Foods has grown proudly from its Florenceville, New Brunswick roots. With 30 employees and sales of $150,000 in its first year of business in 1957, the company has grown to become a global enterprise with more than 20,000 employees operating out of 53 production facilities on six continents with sales in excess of CDN $9 billion, while remaining Canadian headquartered and family-owned.
Company president Robert K. Irving said it is a big deal for agriculture in Alberta.
"Our business will grow from 6,000 acres of potatoes today, with our present land, up to over 15,000 acres," Irving said at the new plant's groundbreaking earlier this month. "Those 9,000 acres, it's an opportunity for the local farmers, the growers in the region, to really look at the opportunity to grow and expand their operations here and have a long-term future with potatoes." READ MORE
Cavendish Farms will begin construction of a new multimillion-dollar facility in north Lethbridge next spring, the largest private investment ever in the city’s history. It’s the first step towards construction of a new $350-million state-of-the-art frozen potato processing plant that will replace its aging facility in the industrial area.| READ MORE
As part of the regular review process, Health Canada has completed its re-evaluation of imidacloprid, and has published its draft risk assessment for public comment. The assessment proposes current use of imidacloprid is not sustainable, and the levels of this pesticide that are being found in waterways and aquatic environments are harmful to aquatic insects, such as mayflies and midges, which are important food sources for fish, birds and other animals.
Concentrations of imidacloprid in surface water can range from non-detectable to, in some rare cases, levels as high as 11.9 parts per billion, according to Health Canada. Scientific evidence indicates levels above 0.041 parts per billion are a concern.
To address the risks identified, Health Canada has published a proposed risk management plan for public comment, which includes a proposed three-year phase-out of agricultural uses of imidacloprid in order to address risks to aquatic insects. In some cases, where there are no alternative pest control products available, a longer phase-out transition period of five years is being proposed.
In a press release, Health Canada said it is consulting on these proposed mitigation measures, and the final re-evaluation decision and risk management plan will take into consideration any comments received during the consultations.
The consultation phase includes a 90-day commentary period in addition to a multi-stakeholder forum that will discuss any proposals for potential alternative mitigation strategies that would achieve the same outcomes in a similar timeframe.
Any proposals for continued registration will need to clearly demonstrate concrete actions to ensure levels of imidacloprid in water will be reduced below the level of concern.
Based on the findings of the re-evaluation assessment on imidacloprid, Health Canada is also launching special reviews for two other widely used neonicotinoids: clothianidin and thiamethoxam. These special reviews will examine any potential risks these pesticides may pose to aquatic invertebrates, including insects, as they are also being detected frequently in aquatic environments.
In the press release, Health Canada said it will provide updates as new information becomes available.
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Alberta Potato Conference and Trade ShowTue Nov 13, 2018
PEI Potato ConferenceTue Feb 19, 2019