Canada E. Coli beef scare isn’t an end-all for producers

I was disappointed with the negativity shown in the “Sad state of the beef industry” guest column by Sylvain Charlebois

Dear Editor:

I was disappointed with the negativity shown in the “Sad state of the beef industry” guest column by Sylvain Charlebois in the Oct. 30 edition.

Upon further analysis, the negativity seemed to stem from wrongly using the term “beef industry” to apply to everyone in the production chain from the rancher through to the beef retailer. To have a better understanding of the issues we need to differentiate between cattle producers — predominantly family farms and ranches — and the “industrial” side of beef production dominated by corporate giants in the processing and retailing sectors.

This differentiation has important implications relating to what the writer correctly identified as changing consumer demands. The consumer is becoming more interested and informed on their food supply and how the animals are raised and as a cattle producer I see this as a positive thing. We direct-market beef from a proportion of our herd direct to consumers and it’s clear from the phenomenal growth in demand that Canadians still stand firmly behind the farmers and ranchers producing their beef.

Rather than seeing a sad state of affairs I see great opportunity ahead for Canadian cattle producers to reconnect with beef consumers eager to have a discussion about safe, wholesome food production. With more consumers than ever wanting to buy direct from their trusted farmer or rancher, this offers the opportunity to break the stranglehold corporate concentration in the processing and retailing sectors has on cattle producers. Hopefully this will lead to a more prosperous cattle sector and at the same time provide Canadian consumers with a great product they enjoy and trust on a more sustainable basis.

Iain Aitken,


Just Posted

Ponoka’s Weir looks back with the Golden Seals

Stan Weir lasted three years with the California Golden Seals before playing with the Oilers

Council highlights

Council to fund Rimbey Boys and Girls Club for $15,000

Over $2.6 million in cuts at Wolf Creek Public Schools

Inclusive learning supports slashed by $1.4 million in major budget course correction for WCPS

UPDATE: No charges in found horses near Bentley

Responding veterinarian says horses were in healthy condition.

Volunteer event well attended

Volunteer committee member Irene Steeves helps out

Drama class performs

Volunteer night held

UPDATED: Arrest made after van hits pedestrians in Toronto

Police are not saying what is the extent of injuries yet

Kinder Morgan bungled pipeline public relations: poll

The survey suggests 58 per cent of Canadians believe the company is to blame for poor perceptions

Royal baby: It’s a boy for Kate and William

The Duchess of Cambridge has given birth to her third child, a boy weighing 8 pounds, 7 ounces.

Trump says North Korea agreed to denuclearize. It hasn’t.

Trump is claiming that North Korea has agreed to “denuclearization” before his potential meeting with Kim, but that’s not the case.

Suspect in deadly Waffle House shooting still being sought

Police say Travis Reinking is the suspect in a shooting at a Waffle House restaurant Sunday in Nashville that left four people dead.

G7 warned of Russian threats to western democracy

Ukraine foreign minister Pavlo Klimkin warns G7 of Russian war against Western democracy

‘When everybody leaves: Counselling key to help Humboldt move on after bus crash

Dealing with life after a tragedy can be the worst part following a loss

Half-naked shooter guns down four, runs away in Nashville Waffle House shooting

Nashville police say they are looking for Travis Reinking in connection with the shooting

Most Read