By Fadi Didi
Farm Credit Canada says Halloween is important for more than just farmers who grow pumpkins and other gourds.
It says in October 2015, consumers spent more than 418 million dollars on candy, a growing portion of which is sweetened by natural agriculture products.
Canadian candy is made from a variety of sweeteners, including honey, maple syrup, sugar beets and sugar cane, as well as a variety of fruits and vegetables.
Sales of sweets spike in October and peak in December, when the festive season surpasses all other months.
Health Minister Jane Philpott acknowledges that long-overdue changes to the Canada Food Guide are likely to have an impact on the food industry.
The Health Department says it plans to update dietary guidelines by the end of 2018 that will reflect the most up-to-date scientific evidence on diet and health.
Other initiatives include updated nutrition labels on pre-packaged foods and restricting marketing to children.
Senator Kelvin Ogilvie, chair of a Senate committee that examined obesity, says the review needs to address what he considers obvious problems, such as characterizing fruit juice as a healthy food choice.
The federal Liberals have rejected a Conservative motion to study the effect of a carbon tax on agriculture.
Conservative agriculture critic David Anderson says the refusal to examine what a carbon tax will mean to producers is unacceptable.
He says the tax will raise the cost of fuel and food for consumers.
And he says it will hit every aspect of farming -- from fuel to fertilizer and equipment.