In this issue : #RealDirt  *  Issue 1 Summer 2015
FARM   *   FOOD   *   CARE   *   COMMUNITY

Welcome to our first newsletter for Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan. The purpose of this e-newsletter is to provide some 'food for thought' as well as to keep you updated on FFC SK events and activities. The newsletter will be distributed seasonally (summer, fall, winter, spring). We'd welcome your feedback and suggestions for content. Have a wonderful summer!

What Consumers Think About Food & Farming
Kim Kennett, Communications Specialist, Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan

Everywhere you turn these days, there's a growing barrage of campaigns that seemingly scrutinize agriculture. Just think about it: A&W's "no antibiotics" and "no added hormones" focus, the annual "March Against Monsanto", Loblaw's "meat sourced with integrity"; Sobey's "Certified Humane" program fronted by Chef Jamie Oliver. 

It's all a bit disheartening and somewhat scary. At first glance, these sorts of campaigns seem to imply that farmers don't care about what they're feeding people or how they go about producing food. But do consumers really think that way? 

The 2012 Ipsos Reid Study of Consumer Attitudes Towards Food and Farming conducted by Farm & Food Care Ontario demonstrates that the general public believes otherwise. In fact, the study shows that farmers: 

  • rate next to veterinarians in believability regarding animal care in consumers' estimation
  • were beat out by only CFIA, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, nutrition professors and dietitians in terms of believability related to food safety.


And there's more good news. The same study indicated that consumers want to know how their food is produced. Also interesting is that in a recent Food Demand Survey by Oklahoma State University, taste, safety, and price remain consumers' most important values when purchasing foods. So, in reality consumers' priorities really haven't changed much from say, 50 years ago, despite all the hype we see in the news.


The question is how do we connect with consumers about farming and food production most effectively? 



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Watch the video & hear Saskatchewan farmer Cherilyn Nagel, our Real Dirt on Farming Speakers' Training facilitator, talk about life on the farm, her passion for agriculture, the value of modern technology & the safety of food on Canadian farms.

More videos:
Have a video you'd like us to share in our next issue? Let us know:

We are also collecting Twitter usernames of farmers interested in connecting with consumers to post on our website. If you'd like us to add you, send us a quick email.
In July Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan will be at  A Taste of Saskatchewan - Mark your calendars - It's sure to be a great (&tasty!) time. A new  Chef's Series will feature Saskatchewan-grown foods as part of a  Top Chef Competition. Click here for more information.

New! Look for #loveSaskfood at upcoming events & tweet the good news about food & Farming in Saskatchewan!  

Andrew Campbell, a dairy farmer from Ontario, started the #farm365 campaign where he shares a photo a day on life on the farm. As of July 9, Andrew had about 18.5K followers on Instagram & Twitter, with Twitter showing 3.3M impressions in tweets since January 1.

Here is what Andrew Campbell had to say when we recently spoke with him about his experiences with #farm365.

The good is two things. One is how many other farmers have joined in #farm365 & opened up their farms to the public to show what they are doing. The second is the renewed optimisim I have for advocacy. We worry so much about the impact of activist messaging, but I've found that so many consumers what to know what a farmer has to say & continue to trust farmers. 

The bad: The activists jumped on #farm365 with great aggression & did it on a united front. Their actions, however, brought many farmers together...making the bad really actually turn into a great positive for the industry. 

If you are looking to share how you care, join in by using #farm365 when posting farm photos & stories to social media. Also, be sure to follow Andrew on Twitter @FreshAIrFarmer.

Andrew will be one of our guest speakers at Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan's "Farms at the Table" Conference December 9 & 10, 2015 at the Saskatoon Inn. Stay tuned!
Andrew & Family

Upcoming Events
Warm weather in Saskatchewan means farmers markets, outdoor food events & celebrations. If you know of a farm or food event in the province, be sure to tell us so we can share it on our Community page

In conjunction with partners, Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan will host chefs & food media in Regina & Saskatoon during the summer of 2015. Our goal is to build knowledge & relationships with people who influence consumers & the food they eat.
Registrations for our 
inaugural farm tours are streaming in and there's some big names on the list, including a number of high profile food writers & bloggers. Chatelaine, Canadian Living, Flavor & the Menu and Taste & Travel Magazine will be represented on this year's tours. Plus we have 30 culinary students confirmed for Saskatoon!

Thank you to all our partners who supported this event!

Great Western one of our sponsors, has launched a new campaign. Look for it in your community! A sneak peek of what you'll see:

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