October is Agriculture Month in Saskatchewan. The goal of the Our Food Has a Story campaign is to help people better understand how Saskatchewan farmers and ranchers raise their livestock and grow their crops and, in turn, build trust in modern agriculture. We do this through conversations and by communicating with passion and building on what we, as individuals, hold true – our shared values.
Connect through Shared Values
Shared values are explicit or implicit beliefs, concepts and principles that underlie a culture or community. Our values help determine what we find important in our daily life and often strongly influence both attitude and behaviour. We have ‘shared’ values when our personal values are in alignment with others.
This year’s Our Food Has a Story theme will continue the dialogue started during Agriculture Month 2016, building on those shared values. Our food experiences create memories, evoke emotions, and bring us together as families and as communities. And conversations about food lead seamlessly into conversations about agriculture.
Share Your Food Story
Everyone has a food story, whether you’re a farmer, a chef or someone who just loves food! Your story is simply your perceived connection - direct or indirect - to the food you eat or grow.
Research conducted by the Center for Food Integrity indicates that producers have one of the most trusted voices when it comes to telling the stories of food and farming, so they must speak up!
Throughout Agriculture Month, share your stories about the moments in your life involving food - whether it is about how many bowls of oatmeal you can produce from an oat crop or your grandmother’s secret recipe for her favorite Thanksgiving casserole.
Frame the Conversation
During Agriculture Month we want to have conversations about how our food is nutritious, affordable, safe and sustainably produced. Here are some quick facts to support each of the four themes:
Our food is nutritious
- Saskatchewan farmers and ranchers grow some of the healthiest, most nutritious food available.
- Our crops and livestock are sought out by customers around the world.
- A few examples:
- Canola, the largest crop grown in Saskatchewan, has the lowest levels of saturated fats compared to other cooking oils.
- Saskatchewan is the world’s leading exporter of flax, an excellent source of fiber and Omega-3 fatty acids.
- Saskatchewan’s farmers and ranchers produce a wide variety of protein sources, including beef, poultry, bison, lamb and pulse crops.
Our food is safe
- You can feel confident feeding your family food produced in Saskatchewan.
- Canada's food safety system is ranked among the very best in the world.
- Our country’s regulatory framework ensures all food in Canada meets health and safety requirements.
- Genetically modified crops undergo extensive testing by Health Canada to ensure they are safe for human consumption as well as the environment.
- National guidelines called codes of practice establish how farm animals should be cared for throughout their life.
- The agriculture industry follows strict on-farm practices, known as biosecurity measures, to prevent the introduction and spread of diseases.
Our food is affordable
- Plant science innovation has resulted in reduced food costs for consumers. Without advancements in science, Canadians would pay over 30% more for bread, and 50% more for fresh fruit.
- Modern production practices provide us with an abundant selection of food choices, allowing us the option to choose affordable foods.
- Canada is among the top five countries in the world that spend the lowest per cent of their annual income on groceries.
Our food is sustainable
- Saskatchewan’s Stewardship Journey began more than a hundred years ago, and continues today as farmers, ranchers and agribusinesses take steps to help sustain the resources we need to grow food.
- Farmers and ranchers are often called the original environmentalists – their livelihoods depend on responsible soil conservation practices.
- Modern farming practices continue to improve to become more sustainable and environmentally sound.
- The use of modern technologies, such as genetically engineered crops, can help reduce the amount of pesticides that farmers use to protect their crops.
- Widely adopted farming practices such as no-till farming lead to better soil health.