Annapolis Valley berries not local enough for Cape Breton farmer

A Cape Breton strawberry farmer wants the Department of Agriculture to narrow its definition of local produce even if it's from Nova Scotia.

Department of Agriculture defines local as anything grown in Nova Scotia

Local growers in Nova Scotia must wait for their berries to ripen in late spring, then compete with imported berries from Florida, California and Mexico that are sold in Canadian grocery stores year-round. (The Associated Press)

A Cape Breton strawberry farmer wants the Department of Agriculture to narrow its definition of local produce even if it's grown in Nova Scotia.

Eddie Rendell of Boularderie Island says it's misleading for stores to advertise strawberries as local when they're from the Annapolis Valley.

"The valley picks first, a week to 10 days ahead of me. The stores in Cape Breton are advertising local berries. I'm getting phone calls and I'm not even picking, it's confusing to the consumer," he said.

The Department of Agriculture defines local as anything grown in Nova Scotia.

But Rendell wants the department to redefine the label as anything grown within 100 kilometres.

"It's the way that the government got it, that they can word it," he said.

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