Press Releases

Food and farming conference focuses on cultivating public trust


Exciting lineup of local and international speakers includes: Ashlyn George, Carolyn O'Neil and Michele Payn.

(SASKATOON, SK) Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan (FFC SK) kicks off its fourth annual Farms at the Table conference today at the Saskatoon Inn. The annual event brings together farmers, ranchers, agribusinesses, government, communicators and food industry stakeholders from across the agricultural value chain to discuss how to engage consumers in meaningful conversations about food and farming.

"The agriculture industry has diversified, expanded and prospered greatly within a few short decades, making huge advancements in technology and animal care practices," says Clinton Monchuk, Executive Director of FFC SK. "However, with less than 3% of Canadians now connected to the farm, we need to do a better job of explaining our actions to those who are not familiar with modern technologies and production systems."

Some of the keynote topics of the conference include Listening to Canadians Talk about Food- Live Consumer Panel; Translating Farm to Food; and Advancing Agriculture- Adapting to Consumer Trends. "We are seeing a greater need for transparency in the agri-food sector and Farm & Food Care wants to be proactive by helping our farmers, ranchers and food producers address these requests and build the public's trust in agriculture," Monchuk says.

Farms at the Table showcases an exciting lineup of both local and international speakers and two panel discussions:

December 13 - doors open at 6:30 PM

Our Food Has a Story Panel: Competing for Attention in the Online World
The conference kicks off with a panel discussion of bloggers from across Saskatchewan to discuss their experiences connecting to consumers online through their blogs and social media. They will comment on how they craft and promote their messages, what kind of conversations are they engaged in online and how they feel the ag industry is doing in communicating to non-farmers.

  • Renée Kohlman: pastry chef, cookbook author & food writer
    Blog: sweetsugarbean
  • Lesley Kelly: podcaster, marketer & agvocate
    Blog: High Heels & Canola Fields
  • Ashlyn George, travel enthusiast, author & former Saskatchewanderer
    Blog: The Lost Girl's Guide to Finding the World

December 14 - registration opens at 8:30 AM

  • Food and Nutrition Trends in Today's Marketplace - Carolyn O'Neil, MS RD LDC
  • Listening to Canadians Talk about Food Live Consumer Panel - Clinton Monchuk, Executive Director FFC SK
    The consumer panel explores top food concerns with a panel of non-farming consumers. We will ask where they get their information; who do they believe and why? We will explore the level of transparency in food production that gives consumers the ability to make sound food buying decisions. What do they want?
  • Advancing Agriculture: Adapting to Consumer Trends - Jeff Wildeman, Cargill
  • Translating Farm to Food - Michele Payn, CauseMatters Corp. Connecting Gate to Plate

"Our Farms at the Table conference links people across the agricultural spectrum: crops, livestock, horticulture, large and small scale, agribusiness, research and government," Monchuk notes. "Our goal is to ensure the agriculture industry is having meaningful conversations with consumers about food and farming."

For more information on the speakers and agenda, see

For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact:

Clinton Monchuk
Executive Director, Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan

Today, less than 3% of Canadians have a direct connection to the farm, which is one reason why so many have questions about how their food is produced. Farm & Food Care runs several programs to help address these consumer questions and inspire more confidence in our farmers and in Saskatchewan-grown foods. To learn more, follow us on Twitter @FarmFoodCareSK or visit our website Or let us put you in touch with a farmer so you can ask them directly about the food on your table!