GFM Network News


Meat leads Canadian industrial producer prices higher in May

Ottawa | Reuters — Canadian industrial producer prices rose 1.2 per cent in May on higher prices for meat, fish and dairy products, Statistics Canada said on Monday, as supply chain disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic and increased demand boosted meat prices. The gain in producer prices followed four months of consecutive decreases and […] Read more

Pulse weekly outlook: Pandemic may pose market opportunity

MarketsFarm — Plant protein products were steadily rising in popularity before the COVID-19 pandemic set in — but that industry could also get a boost from consumers shifting away from meat in a post-pandemic world. “There’s an increased level of awareness of hygiene issues in the meat industry,” Vishal Vijay, head of business development at […] Read more


U.S. meatpacking workers often absent after plants ordered to reopen

"There's still so many risks"

Chicago/Washington | Reuters — Smithfield Foods is missing about a third of its employees at a South Dakota pork plant because they are quarantined or afraid to return to work after a severe coronavirus outbreak, according to the workers’ union. Tyson Foods was forced to briefly close its Storm Lake, Iowa plant — a month […] Read more

Federal surplus food program now taking applications

Qualified NGOs sought to move, distribute perishables to 'populations in need'

A federal program to get food to those who need it, using stockpiles of perishables created by the COVID-19-related shutdown of the dining sector, is now taking applications. The $50 million Surplus Food Rescue Program — which Prime Minister Justin Trudeau telegraphed in a funding announcement May 5 — will take applications from “organizations addressing […] Read more


Details on federal food surplus program expected in ‘days’

Ottawa already at work with businesses, minister says

Ottawa — Detailed plans of the federal government’s food buyback program are expected soon, according to Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau. Ottawa tabbed $50 million of its COVID-19 response funds for agriculture to buy surplus food from farmers and redistribute it to communities in need. The challenge Bibeau and her federal colleagues are faced with is […] Read more

Cargill to shut Montreal-area meat plant temporarily

Company says 64 workers tested positive for COVID-19

Ottawa | Reuters — The Canadian arm of U.S. agribusiness Cargill said Sunday it would soon temporarily shut a Montreal-area case-ready meat plant after 64 workers tested positive for COVID-19. The plant is at Chambly, a South Shore suburb of Montreal, one of the worst hit cities in Canada. Cargill said it was winding down […] Read more


Trump orders U.S. meat processing plants to stay open

Advocates call for protective equipment for plant workers

Washington/Chicago | Reuters — President Donald Trump on Tuesday ordered meat-processing plants to stay open to protect the food supply in the United States, despite concerns about coronavirus outbreaks, drawing a backlash from unions that said at-risk workers required more protection. With concerns about food shortages and supply chain disruptions, Trump issued an executive order […] Read more

Smithfield to close Illinois pork facility

Workers test positive for COVID-19

Reuters — World’s largest pork processor Smithfield Foods said Friday it will suspend operations at its Monmouth, Illinois pork processing facility next week after some employees tested positive for COVID-19, adding to already strained U.S. meat supplies. The news of some of the company’s 1,700 employees at the plant testing positive comes a day after […] Read more


U.S. announces coronavirus aid for farmers, food buys for poor

Direct payments, mass purchases planned

Chicago | Reuters — President Donald Trump on Friday announced a $19 billion relief program to help U.S. farmers cope with the impact of the coronavirus, including $16 billion in direct payments to producers and mass purchases of meat, dairy, vegetables and other products (all figures US$). The U.S. Agriculture Department is partnering with regional […] Read more

Trump administration aims to buy milk, meat to help farmers, Perdue says

Homeland Security to ease visa rules for ag workers

Reuters — The U.S. government plans to buy milk and meat from farmers as part of an initial US$15.5 billion effort to help them weather the impact of the coronavirus outbreak, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said on Wednesday. The decision comes amid rising pressure from the U.S. farm lobby for government purchases as growers and […] Read more