Canadian Agriculture:

The Challenge of Achieving Authentic Sustainability

On December 12, 2022, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, announced the beginning of a process to create a Sustainable Agriculture Strategy (SAS). Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) states that the “25 year Sustainable Agriculture Strategy” will “serve as a guide to support the livelihoods of farmers while growing a sustainable sector.”  As part of the process of crafting its SAS, AAFC initiated a consultation process.  This NFU report, Canadian Agriculture: The Challenge of Achieving Authentic Sustainability is our organization’s initial written contribution to AAFC’s SAS consultation.

This NFU report has three parts: First, it looks briefly at macro-trends within global human economic systems as a way of understanding the context for analyses of sustainability; next, it focuses in on Canadian agriculture and details the challenge of achieving durable, authentic sustainability in that sector; finally, it includes an Appendix that is structured according to AAFC’s SAS questionnaire and provides the NFU’s answers to those questions.

Nothing is more important than succeeding in restoring our food system, and all other human systems, to sustainable alignment within planetary boundaries and biospheric limits. This must be the ultimate goal of the Sustainable Agriculture Strategy process.  And this is the goal of the NFU’s report to AAFC.