The Sprout: Border blockades spread as calls for action multiply

Good day and welcome to the Sprout, where it’s Peppermint Patty Day, Don’t Cry Over Spilt Milk Day, and National Latte Day. Seems like a decent way to kick off the weekend! For the foodies, Saturday is National Plum Pudding Day and Sunday is National Italian Food Day and National Tortellini Day.

Looking for snack inspirations for Super Bowl Sunday? CNN has tips for throwing a Super Bowl party on a budget.

Here’s today’s agriculture news.

The Lead 

We start with an update of the blockades and occupations that continue disrupting the daily lives of Ottawa residents and the movement of goods at several Canada-U.S. border crossings.

Sources tell CTV News that Ontario Premier Doug Ford is expected to announce today that his government is invoking emergency measures to end the blockade at the Ambassador Bridge in Windsor, Ont., which is entering its fifth day, as well as protests gridlocking downtown Ottawa for a 15th day.

An Ontario court is due to hear an injunction put forward by the auto industry at 12 p.m. ET to end the protest at the Ambassador Bridge, North America’s biggest border crossing. The injunction is supported by the City of Windsor.

Protestors continue blocking trade at the Coutts border in southern Alberta, causing major headaches for the country’s truckers. The Calgary Herald has that story. On Thursday, protestors in vehicles and farm equipment also cut off access to the Emerson border crossing in southern Manitoba, and RCMP say they don’t know when that blockade will end.

In conversations with their Canadian counterparts on Thursday, U.S. officials reportedly offered to help end the border blockades, CBC reports. Meanwhile, Global News reports that obstruction of the Ambassador Bridge is encouraging “Buy America” proponents.

In related-headlines:

Around Town 

Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau announced $535,000 for Flowers Canada Growers Inc. on Thursday “to further improve and strengthen Canada’s floriculture industry.” The release is here.

Bibeau also re-appointed Bertha Campbell, Govert Verstralen, and Laura Donaldson to Farm Credit Canada’s board of directors on Thursday for three-year terms. That release is here.

Statistics Canada has the 2021 data on small-area field crops.

In Canada

A Liberal MP has introduced a private member’s bill to protect Canadians’ right to repair items they own. As Real Agriculture reports, it could change the rules for tractor and farm-equipment repairs.

Also from Real Agriculture, the supply of beef will be disrupted in many ways in the coming years, such as changed retail sales, robotics, and labelling.

Topics discussed at the Alberta Federation of Agriculture’s annual general meeting included business risk management, standardized grain contracts, and insurance for truck drivers, the Western Producer reports.

A wild-horse conservation group in Alberta was robbed of thousands of dollars’ worth of trail cameras. The Calgary Herald has that story.


New legislation winding its way through the U.S. Congress will give more power to the Federal Maritime Commission as a container shortage causes problems for shippers, and, consequently, supply chains. As the Western Producer reports, Canadian shippers envy the Ocean Shippers Reform Act.


The Kicker 

The Atlantic’s photos of the week include Snow Cat and Beach Cow.

That’s it for us this week. Have a great weekend and we’ll see you Monday.

This post was copy-edited after publication.

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