Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food Recommend Support for New Farmers and Environmental Farm Practices

By Amanda Wilson - Coordinator of the Community-Academic Collaborative, the New Farmers Initiative and the Northern Food Network

Food Secure Canada and the New Farmer Initiative is encouraged to see several recommendations within the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-food's Report on the Next Agricultural Policy Framework that highlight the importance of encouraging environmental farming practices and supporting new farmers:

Recommendation 13: The Committee recommends that the next policy framework include a component for implementing environmental practices at various stages of the agri food production chain, including measures to address climate change and deal with its effects and measures to help the sector adapt to the environmental regulations landscape in conjunction with the provinces and territories.

Recommendation 17: The Committee recommends that the Government support workforce development initiatives to improve agriculture career awareness amongst underrepresented groups, in order to reduce barriers and increase awareness of the job opportunities available in the agriculture and agri food sector.

Recommendation 18: The Committee recommends that the Government work with stakeholders to support the next generation of farmers by improving farm start-up conditions, succession planning and the transfer of knowledge to help young farmers and beginning farmers start their business.

Key to “improving farm start-up conditions” is the protection of farmland and programs designed to enable secure, long-term and affordable land tenure, as well as start-up grants and patient capital lending schemes so that new farmers are not overburdened with debt as their build their farm business.

In addition to these important issues, we also believe that more attention is needed within the Next Agricultural Framework on support for domestic markets. Our current policy approach places too much emphasis on export-oriented growth strategies, missing crucial opportunities to strengthen and build local and regional markets. See our Policy Brief for further details.

We look forward to further conversations with government, producers and civil society on how to implement these recommendations to ensure a healthy, just and sustainable food system in Canada.

Next Agricultural Policy Framework

Federal, provincial and territorial (FPT) governments are currently working together to develop the next agricultural policy framework which will launch on April 1, 2018.

Read the full report here.


Amanda Wilson works with Food Secure Canada coordinating their work on New Farmers, Northern Food and Community-Academic Collaboration.  She is a post-doctoral fellow at Lakehead University and can be reached at


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Thanks for helping us understand the importance of encouraging environmental farming practices and supporting new farmers. The low-income farmers get from agriculture discourage many people from coming forward to this business. Hope the new projects will help farmers to live better. 

 oren loni