A local beef producer is saying that the new Canada Food Guide may not impact his industry the way some are saying. The new food guide came out January 22 and removes categories like dairy and meat. Instead, it advocates for plenty of fruit and vegetables, with a quarter of your plate being whole grains and a quarter of your plate being protein sources.
Sources of protein include meat, dairy, eggs and plant-based protein sources such as beans and lentils. Many fear that this could leave a lasting impact on the dairy and meat industry by influencing consumers to find different protein sources. Jon Fox, a local beef producer with Justamere Farms, says that protein is synonymous with beef and consumers will still choose meat and dairy.
“I think that it’s gonna be a bit of a change, but the consumer makes the final judgement on things. I don’t see beef consumption going down because of this, maybe there will be smaller portions, but it’s still the protein of choice. Hopefully, the consumer will continue to enjoy good healthy Canadian Beef,” says Fox.
Fox produces Black Angus seedstock cattle for a variety of customers. Some of his herd’s embryos and semen have been shipped all over the world to breed more cattle. Fox says he’s confident that consumers will still choose beef and meet. He says that beef has long been the choice of consumers and that Canadian beef is produced with the highest standards of health and safety protocol.
“When you look at vegetables and salads, there seem to be a lot more problems with them. We’ve strived and worked very hard, between the beef industry and the CFIA to make sure that we’re number one, and I believe we are,” says Fox. He adds that plant-based protein won’t be as satisfying as a steak or a burger.