News June 2021, North America, Production/Agronomy, Smart Farming, Sustainability, Trends

Canadian potato growers optimistic about regenerative ag goal

A McCain Foods pledge to by 2030 use only potatoes from farms that practise regenerative agriculture is an important step, but consumers need to keep asking questions and hold such companies accountable, an expert told Doug Ferguson of The Western Producer.

The overall situation facing Canadians and their food is becoming increasingly worrisome, and not only due to the growing impact of climate change, said Mary Beckie, a professor at the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta. Transitioning from what she called “big ag” to more holistic ways of farming isn’t simply about things such as soil regeneration, which is a key part of regenerative agriculture, but more broadly involves re-examining the many ways agri-food corporations and farming affect Canadians, she said.

McCain Foods plans to implement three Farms of the Future around the world by 2025, including one in New Brunswick that is already operational, to test regenerative agriculture practices.

The company’s focus on the future isn’t new for members of the Potato Growers of Alberta, said executive director Terence Hochstein. “Everything that we do in this industry here in Alberta and across the country is based on the future: saving water, saving energy, reducing pesticide use, reducing erosion. A lot of things mentioned in this roll out (by McCain) are things we already do and are currently doing, and will continue to do.”

Source: The Western Producer. Read the full article here

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