GFM Network News

Kings Noodle House.

A food tour of Toronto’s Kensington Market

When city dwellers get curious about where their food comes from, they take tours like this one to Toronto’s Kensington Market. Country Guide sent writer Steven Biggs to buy a ticket and answer the question: Should a farmer go too?

Reading Time: 7 minutes Our tour guide is Leo Moncel, and as he looks over the English-Chinese menu, he calls out, “Does anyone have dietary restrictions?” In a restaurant like this after everything we’ve seen on the stands and in the windows of Toronto’s Kensington Market, it makes us wonder. What could he mean? It turns out it’s the […] Read more

‘Good in Every Grain’ campaign bridges urban-rural divide

This Grain Farmers of Ontario campaign means consumers meet farmers where they’d never expect to see one

Reading Time: 4 minutes Three tickets for a whisky. Not rye. It’s a downtown Toronto event, the currency is sample tickets, at a buck a piece. Seems reasonable. Besides, there’s a sign that has caught my eye. It announces, “Sample Ontario Corn Whisky: Neat, On the rocks, Whisky sour cocktail.” In a way, it’s the kind of sign I […] Read more

“Bring joy and nourishment to the table,” Halliday says. That’s what makes your message to consumers memorable.

How to talk food in the city

When city consumers want to know how to communicate about food, they go to Voula Halliday

Reading Time: 5 minutes “At the core, you try to create something memorable and special. The possibilities are endless,” says Voula Halliday as we discuss food and events — and how using them together has so much impact when you’re trying to promote causes and make change. It’s a Tuesday morning, and Halliday apologizes as she tells me it […] Read more

Although big chains buy at lower prices, McMullen has her own strategy. The playing field isn’t level, so she changed the game.

A turn at Summerhill

Running this family-owned independent Toronto grocery is amazingly like making a success of a mid-sized Canadian farm, which is why co-owner Christy McMullen is rarely standing still

Reading Time: 7 minutes Chicken pot pie is on our radar the moment I arrive. I’ve heard raves about it, and it’s not long before I spot it. When I pick one up, I quickly understand something about this store’s reputation. At over 1.5 kg, this not your typical meat pie. Nor is this your typical store. Summerhill Market […] Read more

Gone to school

Guide Canada: For a growing number of Millennials, the place to learn about agriculture doesn’t have a conventional farmer anywhere in sight

Reading Time: 5 minutes “I’m energized every time I walk into this building,” says Tony Doyle. “And so is everyone else. They know we’re doing something unique here.” The building Doyle is talking about is the Centre for Food at Durham College in Oshawa, the city on the eastern edge of Ontario’s Golden Horseshoe that has been best known […] Read more

“You’ve got to constantly find ways of making money without raising your prices,” Ezio Bondi says.

The distributor’s business

Bondi Produce in Toronto trucks farm produce inside one of Canada’s most diverse food markets, and sees more opportunities for farmers every day

Reading Time: 8 minutes “We’re selling commodities, which is the exciting part of it. And we’re selling a perishable product, which adds this real pressure,” Ezio Bondi tells me as we walk about his distribution centre here in Toronto. It’s some warehouse. The business started in 1976 with one man — Ezio’s grandfather — and his pickup truck. Some […] Read more

Hanging out in Toronto and talking about pulses,” chef Michael Smith calls out to the city's food glitterati. “Who knew?”

Pulsing in downtown Toronto

To get Canada’s food elites excited about their farm products, Pulse Canada turns to three high-octane city buzzes... celebrities, glamour and nightlife

Reading Time: 6 minutes The presentations begin. A woman takes the stage in the middle of the long, narrow, high-ceilinged room. Across from her, two slide shows project on the wall. On the left screen is a combine working in a large, flat field; on the right, gourmet food. The room hushes as Allison Ammeter, chair of the Alberta […] Read more

When food is on the table, it’s the right time to talk farming, Anderson believes.

A foodie’s Calgary

Next time you’re in CowTown, here’s a way to see the future of Canadian food, and do some great eating too

Reading Time: 7 minutes Around the world, the mention of food and Calgary conjures up thoughts of a great steak in a bustling town. But the idea of Calgary as a foodie destination isn’t so easy a jump. Or at least, it hasn’t been so easy until now. But is it true? Is even the heart of beef country […] Read more

For Bain, reaching consumers boils down to one rule: “There always has to be a story.”

Buffalo Girl author tells food stories in ‘Star’ fashion

Married to an Alberta bison farmer, Jennifer Bain is food editor of Canada’s largest newspaper

Reading Time: 6 minutes I had to buy a chest freezer when we were dating,” says Jennifer Bain. She pauses while the audience laughs. Then she continues telling us about writing Buffalo Girl Cooks Bison, her latest cookbook. She is Buffalo Girl. Her introduction to bison came when she married Rick, an Alberta bison rancher. Bain weaves her own […] Read more

Rudy Knitel (l), and Corne Mans.

Young and old defining food distribution success

Separated by 52 years, Rudy Knitel and Corne Mans find how to succeed at food distribution

Reading Time: 5 minutes As good as you or better,” says Rudy Knitel when I ask him what he was looking for when he went in search of a business partner. A sense of humour apparently helps. Aged 74, Knitel did find his business partner, though. He’s Corne Mans, aged 22. A 52-year age difference might seem like a […] Read more