Country 105

Country 105


Agriculture Report

COOL Not Hurting Canada

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Study shows new labelling in U-S might not hurt Canada's beef industry.


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It appears Country of Origin Labelling in the U-S might not hurt Canada's beef industry as as much farmers thought.

A recent series of blind taste tests were conducted by the Beef Information Centre.

It revealed U-S consumers couldn't tell the difference between American and Canadian beef.

Spokesperson Glenn Brand says the results should encourage retail chains in the U-S to be more open to selling Canadian beef products.

The new findings will be used in an aggressive marketing strategy to promote Canadian beef to U-S restaurants and fast food chains.

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Heavy rainfall in Manitoba is dashing farmers hopes for warmer temperatures.

The province is expecting between two and three inches of rain over the next 24 hours in the southwest region.

It comes just after farmers finally received some warmer weather on the weekend -- something most producers needed to advance crop maturity.

Harvesting in most fields is already about two weeks behind schedule.

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Manitoba farmers are expected to have a poorer harvest this year than in 2008.

Stats Canada says production of the province's two biggest crops -- wheat and canola -- is expected to fall, which reflects a Prairie-wide trend.

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Stats Canada also reports lentil and mustard seed production is up in Saskatchewan.

According to the agency -- farmers expect to produce 30 per cent more mustard this year than last because of an increase in the harvested area and yield.

Production of canola is down from 5.6 million tonnes in 2008 to 4.6 million tonnes this year.

Oat production decreased by more than 31 per cent from 2.3 million tonnes last year to 1.6 million in 2009.

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Researchers at Michigan State University are working to turn the rutabaga into an oil producing powerhouse that could make the turnip-like vegetable a better source of biofuel than other food crops.

The idea is that the rutabaga -- which stores oil in its seeds like some other biofuel crops - could be genetically modified to churn out more oil and store it throughout the plant.

The rutabaga hasn't had much presence on dinner tables -- so there would be plenty of supply for biofuel production.

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And tests in Chile show the H1N1 flu has jumped to birds -- opening a new chapter in the global epidemic.

Top flu and animal-health experts with the United Nations and the U-S Centres for Disease Control and Prevention are monitoring the situation.

But they say the infected turkeys have suffered only mild effects -- easing concern about a potentially dangerous development.

 


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