Farmers: Have Your Say on Canada’s Food PolicyJuly 12, 2017Hub ArticleThe Government of Canada is asking Canadians to share their views on A Food Policy for Canada. The policy could affect the way you farm in the future, so farmers are encouraged to complete the 10-minute survey before the July 27 deadline.National Food Policy – A large undertaking The Government's new food policy is expected to serve as Canada's long-term plan for the "health, environmental, social and economic goals" related to food. It will address how Canada will produce more affordable, safe and nutritious food while conserving the environment. The consultations provide a unique opportunity for interested stakeholders and the public to shape the future of food and agriculture in Canada. Much larger than food The strategy is much larger than food, and encompasses farmers' competitiveness and the role they play in producing food. Four themes have been established to guide the discussion and establish future priorities, including: Increasing access to affordable food;Improving health and food safety;Conserving soil, water and air; andGrowing more high-quality food. The survey is asking Canadians to share their views on the themes, where government efforts should be focused and to prioritize actions moving forward.A variety of perspectivesThe Food Policy Summit held last month in Ottawa attracted over 300 participants – each with unique ideas of what a strategy should cover and a different vision of what food production, processing, distribution and consumption should look like in the future. The discussion is expected to touch upon how crops are grown and livestock is raised, agriculture's impact on the environment, the definition of nutritious food and what information should be available to consumers (i.e. think labelling). Federally, a national food strategy provides an opportunity for a coordinated, cross-departmental and sectoral approach to food in Canada. The consultations offer a means to explore many farmer issues such as competitive business environments, trade, sound regulatory systems, solid infrastructure, risk management, public trust and innovation. But the consultations could also provide a platform to advance narrow definitions of sustainability and nutrition and propose restrictive production measures. One size doesn't and can't fit all. The farmer voice is important to these consultations! Invest 10 minutes to tell the Government what you think about A Food Policy for Canada! The deadline to participate in the online survey is July 27.