Agriculture and Climate Change

If you’ve been reading the news lately you might have heard a lot of conversations about climate change and what we all can do to reduce our impact. Driving less, unplugging household devices, eliminating single use plastic are all ways we can help reduce our carbon footprints. A lot of sources saying changing our diet can also help.

Is agriculture or the food we eat to blame for climate change? Will changing our eating habits, and ultimately changing Canadian agriculture help the environment?

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Why farmers still choose glyphosate

Blog post contributed by Matilda Miranda, freelance copywriter and content strategist.

If there‚Äôs one thing that‚Äôs helped revolutionize modern agriculture, it‚Äôs glyphosate. This weed killer has been around since the ‚Äė70s, but it really took off once genetically-modified (GM) glyphosate-tolerant crops were introduced in the late ‚Äė90s.

For the last few decades, this herbicide has allowed farmers to clear large swaths of land from invasive weeds while causing the least amount of damage to their GM crops, due to their glyphosate tolerance. To date, glyphosate continues to be one of the most widely used herbicides in the world. 

Why do farmers keep going back to glyphosate time and again?

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What does GMO mean?

Ever heard the term GMO and wondered what that meant? Saw it online or heard people talking about it at a grocery store but wasn’t really sure what it stood for?

GMO is an abbreviation for a genetically modified organism, which is a crop that has been developed through genetic engineering. This is a precise method of plant breeding that allows a specific trait that is naturally found in one plant to be transferred into another.

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Farmers most vulnerable to mental health illnesses

Each year Bell Canada has an annual mental health awareness campaign called Bell Let’s Talk that is designed to open the conversation surrounding mental health well being in order to remove the stigma.

There has been a focus in past years to bring light the mental health well being of Canadian farmers due to a study published by the University Of Guelph in 2016. The results were staggering:

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Stress on the farm

I recently read a personal piece in the Financial Post written by a farmer about mental health on the farm. A 2016 University of Guelph study surveyed 1,100 farmers in Canada and found that 45 percent had high stress and 58 percent had varying levels of anxiety.

In June 2018, FCC (Farm Credit Canada ‚Äď a Crown agriculture lending company) said that it had provided emergency funding to 67 families in just two and a half months, eight of which involved suicides In 2017, FCC provided funding to a total of 287 families, with only two involving suicides.

Mental health is about more than the circumstances of where we live, or what we do for a living, and the problem with growing mental health issues in agriculture in multi-faceted.

This year in particular, Ontario grain farmers faced an onslaught of issues that compiled on top of this complex issue: weather, commodity prices, crop issues, and changing world dynamics were all huge factors that affected this year’s grain outcomes.

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