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GUELPH, ON, March 28, 2019 /CNW/ - A new study provides further understanding into the tides of public opinion around Canadian food, how it's grown, and the relationship consumers want with farmers and those that process their food. 

Public Opinion: a study of Canadian conversations online about food and farming led by the Canadian Centre for Food Integrity (CCFI), uncovered how food, farming and a handful of hot button issues capture national interest in millions of natural conversations online.  The issues Canadians are most engaged with include climate change and the links to food production, organic foods, and discussions on genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

"This groundbreaking work captured and quantified actual discussion and real sentiment of over 254,900 Canadians talking about food and how it's grown," stated Crystal Mackay, CCFI President. "This kind of research is integral to truly addressing consumer demands and questions in an open and authentic manner."

Key conversations Canadians were discussing online over the two-year period included: 

  • 8 million people were discussing cannabis
  • 2.5 million climate change as it relates to food production
  • 2.1 million genetically modified foods (GMOs)
  • 2 million organic food and farming

Surprisingly, for the most part, millennials and baby boomers were found to be similarly aligned in their views on food issues based on their online conversations.  This is not the case in CCFI's more traditional quantitative research.  The study also identified opportunities for players in the Canadian food system to join the millions of conversations online around key topics such as cost of food and climate change. 

The topics covered farm practices and food production in general, and specifically GMOs, hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides.  As found in previous CCFI research, Canadians most commonly associated farmers with all the key topics studied; more so than any other food system stakeholders.

The Canadian Centre for Food Integrity (CCFI) study measured the discussions related to food and farming of 254,900 Canadians for 24 months on social media, from January 2017 to January 2019. The study assessed many social platforms including Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit using a proprietary artificial intelligence tool to analyze public social media, with no personalized data attached to the findings. 

View the more detailed report findings on this study and other CCFI studies related to Canadians' opinions on food and farming in French or English at www.foodintegrity.ca

 
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Comet Bio, a manufacturer of healthy and sustainable ingredients, has been named the winner of this year’s World Food Innovation Awards for Best Ingredient Innovation. The award recognizes the company’s Arabinoxylan prebiotic dietary fiber extract, and Sweeterra™ syrup blends which are functionally equivalent alternatives to corn syrup but with up to 35% less calories, lower sugar, and higher dietary fiber.

“We are honored to be named a winner at this year’s World Food Innovation Awards for our healthy, sustainable ingredients,” said Comet Bio’s CEO Rich Troyer. “Today’s consumers expect products that address their health concerns while also tasting great and being sustainably produced. Our ingredients provide companies in the nutraceutical, food and beverage industries with ingredients that support gut health, reduce calories, and lower sugar levels without compromising the quality of their end products.”

Comet Bio upcycles food and farm leftovers – such as wheat stems and corn stalks – into healthy, sustainable, and natural ingredients for use in supplements, foods, and beverages. The company’s Arabinoxylan dietary fiber is a prebiotic dietary fiber that can be used to improve the health profile of gummies, bars, drinks, and supplements. The company’s Sweeterra™ syrup blends are a natural, functionally equivalent alternative to corn syrup giving companies a healthier sweetener option. Their Sweeterra™ 63DE blend has up to 35% less calories, lower sugar, and higher dietary fiber content than traditional corn syrup, while their Sweeterra™ 95DE syrup is highly pure and non-GMO. According to an independent Lifecycle Carbon Emissions Assessment (LCEA), Comet’s ingredients reduce greenhouse gases by up to 60% compared to traditional corn syrup.

Comet Bio’s manufacturing process closes the loop on the food system, and helps turn food and farm leftovers into an economic opportunity for farmers and food and beverage producers alike.

 

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