GFM Network News


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

Whole populations seek foods rarely grown on Canada’s farms.

A food walk in India on the streets of Toronto

Follow Steven Biggs’ footsteps for your own eye-opening tour of the new world of Canadian food

Reading Time: 7 minutes It’s pretty clear that we don’t exactly know what we’re doing. The shopkeeper, looking through the window, sees our hesitation. He opens the door, looks at us, smiles, and waves us in. “Please come in,” he says. Not familiar with this stretch of city shops, we had paused to peer in the window of a […] Read more


Consumers want to connect to their family, their land, and their shared values.

The direct option for marketing ethical beef

At first, direct marketing gave Dylan and Colleen Biggs hope to save the farm. Now it’s driving robust expansion

Reading Time: 7 minutes They told me I would fail,” says Colleen Biggs, remembering the phone call she made soon after taking over sales and marketing on the home ranch. It was 1995, and with no room to cut costs any deeper, she had called the Alberta Ag Ministry to find out more about direct marketing, thinking their way […] Read more

dee Hobsbawn-Smith

Prairie writer has close relationship with food, farming

dee Hobsbawn-Smith is winning international literary awards for her portrayal of Alberta farmers

Reading Time: 6 minutes A friend flipped me an email about a reading in Toronto by Prairie writer dee Hobsbawn-Smith from her book, Foodshed. Her book is about Alberta food and farmers, making this an unusual event in urban Ontario. It turns out, this isn’t the only way that it’s unusual. The event is described as an informal potluck […] Read more


The plus side of the new farm is that Stoddart has largely freed his farm from commodity markets. But it takes commitment.

Organic by choice, sort of

If you think you’ve got what it takes to thrive at direct-to-consumer farming, maybe you better talk to Harry Stoddart first

Reading Time: 6 minutes We’re really selling the relationship, and the story of us,” says Harry Stoddart as he describes the markings on his White Park-cross cattle. The rare White crossbreed, he explains, is part of his story. It’s because he can tell a story that I’m at Stoddart’s farm. His book, Real Dirt: An Ex-Industrial Farmer’s Guide to […] Read more

Last year alone, FoodShare’s 5,000 volunteers reached out to over 200,000 Torontonians.

FoodShare provides fresh vegetables, food security

Farm groups are getting on the inside with Toronto’s world-class food outreach program

Reading Time: 6 minutes When I fire off a last-minute email to confirm the details of my scheduled visit, I mention that I have never before seen a food bank. Debbie Field, executive director of FoodShare, politely responds, “We are not a food bank,” she tells me. “We’re a community food hub.” Food bank, food hub. But the next day, […] Read more


Like farming, long says, owning a restaurant isn’t for the faint of heart. But a good plan will succeed.

The Long way: Food, plus the facts

Toronto chef serves great food, with a side of information so customers learn how lucky they are to have Canada’s farmers working for them

Reading Time: 4 minutes “Someone is getting screwed,” declares chef Brad Long. We’ve only just sat down at Long’s restaurant, Café Belong, and the conversation is already intense. I immediately like Long, who smiles and gesticulates as he talks a mile a minute, punctuating his thoughts with the odd F-bomb. It takes focus to keep up. Even when he […] Read more

In Ontario alone, Ogryzlo’s $10 challenge would pump $2.4 billion more to food producers.

Author builds a consumer connection to farmers with ‘local food’

Meeting Lynn Ogryzlo in the heart of Toronto’s food district, we wonder if maybe the chasm between farmers and consumers isn’t as deep as we thought

Reading Time: 5 minutes Bag-toting shoppers amble past me on either side as I snag a table near the bakery. It’s already 2 p.m., and the picked-through bakery racks confirm that it’s too late to get the best-of-the-best fresh food at Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market. Even so, the place is still a hive of food lovers. That’s because by […] Read more