GFM Network News


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Grain, seed corn growers get access to seasonal worker program

Maple syrup also added to national commodity list

Reading Time: 2 minutes Growers of grains, oilseeds and seed corn and maple syrup producers may be able to get in on the federal Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWP) for the 2021 season. Federal Employment Minister Carla Qualtrough announced Nov. 27 the national commodity list (NCL) would be expanded to include seed corn, oil seed, grains and maple syrup […] Read more

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Foreign worker isolation support extended

Federal program extended alongside federal restrictions

Reading Time: 2 minutes The federal program helping employers of temporary foreign workers (TFWs) cover the costs of isolating new workers for two weeks on their arrival in Canada has been extended through November. Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau announced Monday that the Mandatory Isolation Support for Temporary Foreign Workers Program will now run to Nov. 30, as the government […] Read more


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TFW program to be overhauled after COVID-19 outbreaks on farms

"The piece that's missing is enforcement"

Reading Time: 2 minutes Winnipeg | Reuters — Canada is overhauling its temporary foreign worker program, a government spokeswoman said on Friday, after coronavirus outbreaks on Ontario farms sickened hundreds and led Mexico to demand assurances of proper safeguards. As part of the review, surprise inspections of working and living conditions on farms will immediately increase, Ashley Michnowski, communications […] Read more

File photo of a quality control check on fresh peppers in a Canadian vegetable packing plant. (Jeffbergen/E+Getty Images)

Laid-off foreign workers may get conditional clearance for other jobs

Workers allowed to start new jobs while permits are processed

Reading Time: 2 minutes Approved temporary foreign workers (TFWs) whose jobs disappeared before they could begin work in Canada this spring can now get much quicker approval to start at other workplaces, including farms, where the workers are needed. The federal government said Tuesday it will, effective “immediately,” temporarily waive its rule requiring a TFW to receive federal approval […] Read more


File photo of a New Brunswick blueberry field in autumn. (EdCorey/iStock/Getty Images)

New Brunswick ag groups rip province’s ban on foreign workers

Risk during pandemic 'simply too great,' premier says

Reading Time: 2 minutes New Brunswick farmers who employ temporary foreign workers (TFWs) are calling for the provincial government to reverse its new COVID-19-related ban on entry of TFWs who haven’t yet arrived. The provincial government on Tuesday updated a mandatory order under its pandemic state of emergency to restrict TFWs from entering the province. The new restriction doesn’t […] Read more

With staff like Josiah Faji (left) and Josue Salgado, Sandy Purdy says the door is open for sustainable growth.

Diverse, and profitable

Saskatchewan’s Prairie Berries has figured out how a diverse and inclusive workplace can help it achieve growth targets that otherwise just couldn’t happen

Reading Time: 9 minutes There’s a story that gets told about what it’s like to work an agricultural job in Canada. In this case, though, the story isn’t told in English or French. Those telling it speak Spanish, Tagalog, Vietnamese, Arabic and other languages. They are among the thousands of newcomers in Canada as Temporary Foreign Workers on contracts, […] Read more


(HortCouncil.ca)

Farm labour shortage seen costing billions, expected to rise

Reading Time: < 1 minute Ottawa | Reuters — Canada’s farm labour deficit is expected to double by 2029 to 123,000 workers, or one in three jobs, as shortages continue to hit the sector’s bottom line, the Canadian Agriculture Human Resource Council said on Tuesday. Farmers in Canada have long reported challenges in recruiting farm workers because the rural-based work […] Read more

Beating the odds: Gurpreet Singh, Murray Froebe and Tapinder Singh found a way to connect that helps the farm and them too.

New hires

On Canada’s farms, the cost of all the work that can’t be done because there are no workers to do it is spinning out of control

Reading Time: 10 minutes Farmers around Carman, Man., know the small convenience store in the town called the Lite Stop Foods. They know they’ll find what they want there — a few groceries, the local newspaper, a snack to tide them over. It also happens to be where Murray Froebe found two very good employees for his farm. Froebe […] Read more


(CBSA via YouTube)

Duration limit lifted from foreign worker program

Reading Time: 3 minutes Canadian farm groups are among the sectors hailing Ottawa’s decision to axe the cumulative duration rule, or “four-in, four-out” policy, which stood to sideline temporary foreign workers from the Canadian market. The federal government announced last Tuesday (Dec. 13) it would lift the restriction, effective immediately. The cumulative duration rule had been in place in […] Read more

(Photo courtesy Canada Beef Inc.)

Canada may delay foreign worker limits as packers, farms face squeeze

Reading Time: 3 minutes Winnipeg | Reuters — Canada may delay implementing new restrictions on the use of foreign workers as farmers and meat processors warn of severe labour shortages in one of the world’s biggest agricultural exporters, the employment minister said. Employers have reported difficulty finding workers despite a 7.1 per cent unemployment rate. Many Canadians resist jobs […] Read more