By Fadi Didi
Verified Beef Production program gives producers a chance to share stories with consumers, retailers.
Animal-behaviour expert Temple Grandin says cattle handling has improved, but that message needs to be better shared with consumers.
Grandin won't talk specifically about standards in Canada, but she notes that there is a code of practice which she calls a baseline standard for producers to follow.
She says standards need to be clear and measurable, not something as vague as cattle have to be properly handled and have adequate space.
Standards for treating cattle came under the spotlight in April when the Earls restaurant chain said it would only serve certified humane beef from U.S.-based slaughterhouses designed by Grandin.
Earls backtracked after facing a social media storm.
The Beef Cattle Research Council has started a new program.
It's called the Verified Beef Production Plus program.
It gives beef producers a chance to share their stories about sustainable production practises with consumers and retailers.
The national program offers training and auditing for animal care, biosecurity and environmental stewardship.
There's also on-farm food safety practices within the cow-calf and feedlot sectors.
Farmer Cecilie Fleming says being a producer under the program enables beef operations to showcase the good production practices they commit to on their farms.
Today is the last day for a farm conference in Saskatoon.
It is focusing on food security -- and how it will be a vital issue in the coming years, especially if predictions of a world population exceeding 9 billion people by mid-century prove to be correct.
300 scientists, policy makers and industry representatives from more than 25 countries are meeting.
Talk has focused on how to move innovations in agricultural research more quickly, in as little as four years from lab bench to field.
Visitors from 52 countries are in Regina this week to attend the annual Canada Farm progress show.
Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart says he will meet with several of the delegations to discuss the advantage of Saskatchewan-made farm machinery.
As a farmer, Stewart says the show is a must-see to stay on top of the latest in farm technology.
The show has 650 displays, including 78 foreign exhibitors from China, India, Netherlands and the U-S.