• Magazine

    To save the bees, we must confront capitalist agriculture

    Honeybees pollinate millions of acres of monocultured crops and produce vast amounts of honey for sale. They have become workers in the landscapes of capitalist agriculture. But they’re dying at a terrifying pace, plagued by mites, pesticides, and poor nutrition.

  • Magazine

    The Indian farmers’ protest is a window on a new world

    Since September 2020, tens of thousands of farmers and farm labourers and over 40 unions have been waging resistance to three agricultural farm bills in India. The protest’s sustained presence, immense scale, and diverse solidarities have shaken the legitimacy of Prime Minister Modi, and provided us all with a renewed ethical orientation and political vision for a new world.

  • Sask Dispatch

    Selling off Saskatchewan

    A coalition of agricultural, environmental, and Indigenous organizations are calling on the Government of Saskatchewan to put an end to the privatization of Crown land, calling it a “hidden tragedy” for native prairies.

  • Magazine

    Mistreated, marginalized, migrant

    Following the deaths of three workers to COVID-19, the experience of migrant farmworkers in Canada has received unprecedented media attention. As a result, workers are winning long-overdue changes to their conditions. This timeline charts the wins and losses of migrant agricultural workers in Ontario during seven months of COVID-19.

  • Magazine

    The implicit militancy of gardening

    After two months on strike, CUPE 3903 members were feeling worn out. That changed when, one night – armed with a Rototiller, under cover of darkness – they decided to plant a community garden on the picket line.

  • Sask Dispatch Briefs

    Group hopes courts will force U of S to release documents on ties to Monsanto

    Faculty members and others at the University of Saskatchewan have launched a legal challenge to force the University to release information on its ties to agribusiness giant Monsanto, recently acquired by Bayer.

  • Magazine

    The Plight of the Pollinators

    In the battle between beekeepers and agrochemical lobbyists over the use of neonicotinoid insecticides, farmers and non-farmers are joining forces to stand up for the bees.

  • Magazine

    Regulatory Snarls for Small-scale Farmers

    Consumers and foodies are clamouring for ethical local foods, but some farmers are in a pickle just trying to get their goods to market.

  • Magazine

    Women who dig

    The 2014 Writing in the Margins creative writing contest runner-up for creative non-fiction. Chosen by judge Marcello Di Cintio.

  • Magazine

    An honest man

    They knew that he came from overseas and that all he knew was digging holes.

  • Magazine

    Cracking the soil in Uganda

    How will subsistence farmers like Ninsiima Florence fare under the G8’s New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition?

  • Magazine

    Weeding out Monsanto

    Canadian farmers have successfully blocked genetically modified flax, wheat, and pigs. Now the fight is on to keep out Monsanto alfalfa. It’s a fight farmers and their consumer allies can win, writes Cathy Holtslander.

  • Magazine

    Organizing for Gaza’s land and sea

    Gaza’s farmers and fishers are on the front lines of a military occupation intended to force them from their land and seaways. The Union of Agricultural Work Committees is organizing Palestinian farmers and fishers to support their efforts to remain on the land and sustain an independent agricultural economy. With the help of a growing international boycott against Israel, their strength is growing.

  • Magazine

    The spoils of an undeclared war

    The presence of drug traffickers in Laguna del Tigre hasn’t affected oil production. In fact, there’s a renewed interest from oil companies in Guatemala’s oil.

  • Magazine

    Land rush

    Amid skyrocketing food prices, climate-related instability, and declining soil and water resources, wealthy investors have begun to size up the world’s farmland as both an investment opportunity and a hedge against food crises and political turbulence. Saskatchewan’s farmland has gained a particularly noteworthy reputation, making the province a global hot spot for farmland investment.

  • Magazine

    Letter from the editor

    Necessary for survival and intricately intertwined with our emotions, spirituality and culture, food holds major power. As such, the systems that govern its cultivation, distribution and consumption are fertile battlefields for controversy, domination, generosity and resistance.

  • Magazine

    Selling the farm

    If Harper has his way, CETA – the biggest trade deal since NAFTA – will be finalized by the end of this year. The agreement has largely escaped the attention of the media and food activists, but if gone unchallenged will deal a heavy blow to food sovereignty in this country.

  • Magazine

    Recipe for disaster

    Monsanto is among a handful of powerful multinationals that, with the support of Western governments, including Canada’s, are priming Vietnam to become a hotbed of biotechnology development, with potentially devastating consequences for its land and people.

  • Magazine

    Fair trade and empire

    Fair trade marketing and advocacy rely on the idea that fair trade increases connectedness between Global South producers and Global North consumers. But while fair trade does reduce the number of intermediaries in the supply chain as compared to the free trade system, it also serves to reinforce racist and colonial distinctions between the poor Global South farmer and the benevolent Global North consumer. While it may channel slightly more income into agricultural communities, it ultimately fails to address the colonial capitalist structures that produce the impoverishment of farmers on an ongoing basis.

  • Magazine

    20 food initiatives to get excited about

    A recent study on the Canadian food movement found it to be uniquely decentralized and self-propagating in comparison to other social movements. Through phone and e-mail conversations with foodies across the country, Briarpatch learned about dozens of inter-connected but independent food-related initiatives that together are crafting a network of more sustainable, democratic and inclusive food systems that challenge our current corporate, industrial model. What follows is a small sampling of the most exciting initiatives we came across.