Presented by Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan and Saskatchewan Egg Producers
What is Breakfast From the Farm?
Feeding kids with foods grown right here in Saskatchewan
In a unique collaboration with four urban schools in the province, Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan is providing a free breakfast featuring Saskatchewan-grown foods to about 900 school kids. We’re working with four schools in Yorkton, Prince Albert, Regina and Saskatoon.
In addition to their ‘breakfast for lunch’, each student will receive a bag with activities, recipes, pencils and gifts from Saskatchewan farmer groups. Farm & Food Care is also coordinating a series of interactive online activities such as virtual farm tours and agriculture trivia contests for students to learn more about Saskatchewan food and farming.
We’re very proud to be partnering with Agriculture in the Classroom Saskatchewan on this initiative.
- Eggs There are different breeds of chickens, some are raised for meat and others to produce eggs. Chickens that lay eggs are called hens. A healthy hen can lay about 300 eggs each year!
- Wheat Flour Wheat is the most widely grown crop in the world. Wheat seeds get milled into flour. Farmers harvest wheat using combines, which can harvest enough wheat kernels in 9 seconds to make about 70 loaves of bread!
- Apple Juice Apple juice comes from apples that have been processed. Food processing is any method used to turn fresh foods into food products.
- Canola Oil The small, yellow flower of the canola plant produces tiny round seeds in small pods. These seeds are crushed to produce oil that is low in saturated fat. Approximately 40% of a canola seed is oil!
- Oats (granola bar) Saskatchewan is an important oat growing region. Oats contain lots of bran, fibre and beta-glucan and may reduce the risk of heart disease. Oats are also an important part of many animals’ diets!
- Beef (beef jerky) Beef cattle can live comfortably outdoors all year round. Cattle graze on land that is not suitable for growing crops. All cattle are required to have an ear tag for the purpose of food safety and traceability.
- Cheese Dairy cows produce milk, which is an important ingredient to make cheese! A dairy cow is milked 2 to 3 times each day and gives on average of 30 litres of milk per day!
Learn about Eggs
Egg-laying hens in Canada can live in five different types of barns:
- Enriched Hens live in smaller, more natural sized groups with nest boxes, scratch pads, and perches that allow them to exhibit natural behaviour. This method will be the industry standard in Canada by 2036.
- Free run Hens live in larger groups, and can move around freely on the entire barn floor, but don’t go outside. They have scratch pads, and lay their eggs in nesting boxes.
- Free range Hens in larger groups are raised in barns similar to free run, but can go outside when the weather is suitable for them to do so. They are able to scratch and lay their eggs in nesting boxes.
- Aviary Larger groups of hens live in a barn with several levels for perching, eating, and drinking. They lay their eggs in nest boxes, and can go down to the barn floor to scratch.
- Conventional Hens live in small groups with equal access to fresh food and water. Mesh floors allow the hens’ waste to fall away, keeping the birds and eggs clean. Canadian egg farmers began eliminating this type of barn in 2014, and any new barns that are being built, or existing barns that are being renovated, must follow the new housing standards.
Learn more about eggs from our partner Saskatchewan Egg Producers
Learn about Cattle
Cattle that are raised for meat are called beef cattle. Canadian ranchers choose which breed or breeds to raise based on the characteristics of each breed.
Beef cows and their calves typically live on pasture during spring, summer, and fall, eating mostly a grass diet. Their thick coat of fur means that, with adequate shelter and a steady supply of feed and water, they can live outdoors comfortably all year long.
When beef cattle reach a weight of approximately 400 to 460 kilograms (about 900 to 1,000 pounds), they usually move from fields and ranges to open-air yards or barns called feedlots, where they can be managed more closely.
In feedlots, cattle are slowly switched from a diet of mainly forages (grasses and other plants) to a higher energy diet of grains (like barley or corn), hay silage (chopped and naturally fermented plants), minerals, and hay. This process results in marbled, high-quality grades of beef. Marbling is the existence of small white flecks of fat that run through lean meat, which contributes to its flavour and tenderness.
Learn more about beef from our partner
Learn about Wheat
Canada produces a very high quality wheat that is in demand in many places in the world. Saskatchewan is a major producer
Wheat is one of the three most produced cereal crops in the world, along with corn and rice. Canada is one of the largest wheat exporters in the world.
Within Canada, wheat is our most cultivated crop. Close to half of all Canadian wheat is grown in Saskatchewan, followed by Alberta and Manitoba.
Wheat has several uses, including flour for baked goods and pasta, and feed for livestock.
In Canada, by law, refined wheat or white flour is enriched with vitamins and minerals, to a level equal to or higher than in whole grains. Originally, the enrichment of wheat flour simply replaced nutrients lost in the refining process, but today enriched flour is fortified with a higher amount of nutrients to provide health benefits. In Canada, all refined wheat flour is fortified with thiamine (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2), niacin (vitamin B3), folic acid and iron.
Learn more about wheat from our partner
Learn about Canola
Canola is a “Made in Canada” crop that was developed through traditional plant breeding techniques, and is now the cooking oil of choice for billions of people around the world.
Its name comes from a contraction of the words Canada and ola, meaning oil. Canola oil is prized for its heart-healthy properties, and contains the least amount of saturated fat of all common culinary oils. It is one of the most versatile and affordable oils, with many applications at home, in restaurants, and in food processing.
It is also a multi-purpose crop. Once the oil is extracted from the canola seed, a high-protein meal is produced from the remaining portion, which makes a great addition to livestock feed. It’s also used as a replacement for petroleum, to make green plastics, and an environmentally-friendly fuel called biofuel. Canada exports more than 90 per cent of its canola as seed, oil, or meal, to approximately 50 markets around the world.
Did you know? Canola is a member of the Brassicaceae family – the same botanical family as broccoli, turnips, rutabaga, cabbage, cauliflower, and mustard.
Learn more about canola from our partners Canola Eat Well
Learn about Oats
Oats are a cereal grain that many of us are familiar with in the form of oatmeal or rolled oats.
There are about 11,000 oat producers in Western Canada who produce more than 3.5 million tonnes of oats each year! Approximately 90% of annual Canadian oat exports go to the United States.
Canada is the largest oat exporter in the world, and Saskatchewan is the largest oat-growing province. We use about half of the oats we grow here in Canada and the other half are exported. Almost 90% of our exports go to the United States.
Eating cooked oats is associated with better diet quality, better nutrient intake and reduced risk of obesity in adults and children.
Learn more about oat from our partners SaskOats and Grain Millers
Learn about Milk & Dairy
Dairy cows—those raised to produce milk—are leaner than their beef cattle cousins, as they put their energy into making milk instead of gaining weight by building fat and muscle. Holsteins are the most popular milking cows in Canada, and are easily recognizable by their black and white spotted hides. Other common dairy breeds in Canada are Jersey, Ayrshire, Brown Swiss, Guernsey, Milking Shorthorn, and Canadienne.
Did you know that more and more Canadian farmers are using robots to milk their cows? Cows move around freely inside the barn, and it’s up to them to choose when and how often they go to a robot, where they are milked by an automatic machine. The robot keeps track of how many times a day each cow has been milked, how much milk she has produced, and can track how much feed she has eaten. That means that the robot can let farmers know if a cow might be sick, if she isn’t giving as much milk, or isn’t coming to the robot to be milked as often.
In all barns, milk flows through pipes into a large milk tank, called a bulk tank, where it is cooled and stored until the milk truck comes—every two days on most Canadian farms—to pick it up and take it to a dairy processing plant.
Learn more about milk and dairy from our partner SaskMilk
Resources for Teachers and Students
Teachers and students (and lots of other people!) across Canada want to know more about food production. Food is connected to many of the big issues facing our society, including food safety, the environment, the humane treatment of farm animals, the cost of living and energy, health care and climate change, just to name a few.
Check out some of these great learning resources to learn more about food production in Canada.
- Agriculture in the Classroom Saskatchewan
- The Real Dirt on Farming
- FarmFood360 Virtual Tours
- Ag in the Classroom Canada’s snapAg factsheets
- Sun West Distance Learning Centre
Learn more about resources for teachers and students from our partners
Learn more about Canadian Food and Farming
Food and farming are a big deal in Canada. Not only do Canadians depend on farmers to produce the food we eat, but agriculture and agri-food provide jobs for more than 2.3 million people. One in eight Canadian jobs is directly linked to the sector, which contributed $142.7 billion to our national economy in 2019, and is thus a major driver of economic growth.
Canadian farms come in all types and sizes, from small orchards and vineyards to large grain farms and cattle ranches, varying in their ability to produce food. A small piece of very fertile land can profitably grow specialty vegetables for a niche market, for example, whereas a large 5,000-acre farm in a cooler climate with poorer soil is better suited for grazing animals.