McCain Foods’ Farm of the Future in Florenceville-Bristol – in the Canadian province of New Brunswick – seeks to sustain potato production and battle climate change in the years and decades ahead by drawing on the McCain family’s rich heritage and ingenuity from past years and decades, writes Jim Dumville, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, in this story published by the Toronto Star.
“Nothing is more important to us than our heritage as a family company,” said Jess Newman, McCain’s senior director of agriculture and sustainability, “as a company founded by farmers right here in Florenceville.”
Newman explained the Farms of the Future, like the one which began operation this year in New Brunswick, will serve as a testing ground for innovative practices aligned with regenerative agriculture.
She said the farm would share its successfully proven practices with McCain’s potato producers across the region and around the world. “Our commitment is to implement regenerative agriculture practices on 100 per cent of potato acres,” Newman said.
Globally, she added, the frozen French fry giant draws from 320,000 potato acres. Eventually, she said, information garnered from the experimental farms will improve the sustainability of all potato production. “Our Farm for the Future in our hometown of Florenceville is our first one, but we have plans for more to come because practices are highly regional,” Newman said.
During its first year, McCain’s Canadian Farm of the Future will seek to incorporate precision agriculture technologies like remote sensing, experimenting with seeding practices and implementing controlled traffic on a field.
The Farms of the Future is only one part of McCain Foods’ overall commitment to reduce carbon emissions and battle climate change on a significant scale.