Skip to content
2.7 °Cforecast >
! Sunny

Owen Roberts

Owen Roberts

Owen Roberts is a journalist and a columnist with daily, weekly and monthly print and online media. His stories and columns appear in RealAgriculture.com, Guelph Today, FCC Express, Orangeville Banner, Woolwich Observer, The Grower, Ontario Pork Retailer News, Country Routes/Erin Advocate, as well as on his blog Urban Cowboy (www.urbancowboy.ca). He is active on social media, particularly through twitter as @theurbancowboy. He is also a freelance travel writer for the Toronto Star.

In the media, Owen typically discusses urban perspectives on agri-food issues. He is vice-president of the 5,000-member International Federation of Agricultural Journalists, which represents journalists in 40 countries, and a senator in the Canadian Farm Writers’ Federation.

Owen is an adjunct professor in the Department of Animal Biosciences and the research communications director at the University of Guelph. As well, he serves as editor of the University’s Research magazine. Owen created the popular student-research writing program Students Promoting Awareness of Research Knowledge (SPARK), which celebrated its 25th year in 2014-15. Many of his former students are active in journalism, communications and marketing in Ontario and elsewhere. His programs and research papers have been recognized nationally and internationally through awards from the Journal of Applied Communications, the Association for Communications Excellence and others.

Owen holds a Bachelor of Arts (communications) from the University of Windsor, a Master of Science (rural extension studies) from the University of Guelph, and a Doctor of Education (agricultural education and communications) from Texas A&M University and Texas Tech University. In 2005 he was awarded an honourary life membership by the Ontario Institute of Agrologists.

Recent Work by Owen

Old-fashioned thoughts about modern farming

Old-fashioned thoughts about modern farming

In this edition of 'Urban Cowboy', Owen Roberts scratches his head over misconceptions about farm ownership and other modern agricultural practices
Icewine harvest adds to tourism experience <b>(2 photos)</b>

Icewine harvest adds to tourism experience (2 photos)

The latest edition of Urban Cowboy takes an in-depth look at icewine
‘Tis the season of temptation

‘Tis the season of temptation

Dietitian Michelle Jaelin talks to Owen Roberts about food porn, Instagram posts and food waste in this edition of 'Urban Cowboy'
Ontario pet owners and farmers face veterinarian shortage

Ontario pet owners and farmers face veterinarian shortage

In this 'Urban Cowboy', Owen Roberts highlights the changes faced by veterinarians across the province
Business accelerator opens at University

Business accelerator opens at University

Over 14 weeks, participants will learn how to turn their innovative ideas into products and services… and maybe even create a startup company
Aquaculture station nets sustainable seafood certification <b>(4 photos)</b>

Aquaculture station nets sustainable seafood certification (4 photos)

In this month's 'Urban Cowboy', Owen Roberts discusses food sustainability standards at the university level
Guelph firm creating corn biproduct for cosmetic industry gets $1 million boost from feds

Guelph firm creating corn biproduct for cosmetic industry gets $1 million boost from feds

Mirexus, a company with U of G roots, looks to take advantage of burgeoning global market for its food-based product
Think someone slipped you the wrong fish? This gadget might help

Think someone slipped you the wrong fish? This gadget might help

In this week's Urban Cowboy, Owen Roberts tells us how scientists are trying to barcode the DNA of all the species on the planet
<b>Opinion:</b> Students help food sector prepare for wild ride

Opinion: Students help food sector prepare for wild ride

At the University of Guelph, students from across disciplines are doing their part to meet the changing face of the country by immersing themselves in new product development
<b>Urban Cowboy: </b> Working together is key to agri-food success <b>(2 photos)</b>

Urban Cowboy: Working together is key to agri-food success (2 photos)

Partnerships are how new developments occur, and how things get done