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Farmer Walking Through Field Checking Wheat Crop

COMMENT: The power of co-operation — and the cost of disunity

By working together, the agriculture sector can continue to accomplish great things

There is a common adage in agriculture “wheat is 14 per cent protein and 86 per cent politics.” This was often applied in the era of debates over marketing, but it can still be fit today on many issues in agriculture. This is unfortunate and it comes at a cost. When governments in Canada receive […] Read more


Open the books

There’s no reason not to have a final audit of the CWB now the organization no longer exists

The following is a lightly edited letter of response sent from the National Farmers Union to Michael Ferguson, Canada’s auditor general. We would like to clarify that the National Farmers Union is not asking for an audit of G3; our request is for an audit of the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) as it prepared for […] Read more



A made-in-Manitoba tragedy of the commons

Community pastures will suffer under recent changes to agricultural Crown land leasing in Manitoba

In February, a provincial news release about changes to agricultural Crown land advised that “The Manitoba government has launched a consultation focused on agricultural Crown lands, to ensure upcoming policy changes reflect the views of the livestock industry while improving fairness and transparency in the system (. . .).” How will these changes affect the […] Read more


Bridging the digital divide is no easy task

Rural residents are still living life in the slow digital lane

Anyone who dares suggest country life moves at a slower pace would be laughed out of the room in most rural communities, especially at this time of year as the spring-planting frenzy kicks into high gear. But there’s one sector of the rural economy and of rural living that few would deny moves at a […] Read more



Comment: What’s the matter with rural Kansas?

Mostly the current model for agriculture, according to one writer

For over 100 years, some Kansans have either built or added to their journalism reputation by asking this simple question: What’s the matter with Kansas? The answer, however, is far from simple. The first to ask was William Allen White, the publisher and editor of the Emporia Gazette. White, a mainstream Republican, posed the question […] Read more


Comment: Rest in peace

Hard work and life’s trials left little time for happiness

By default, obituary writers get the last official word on everyone. They tell the deceased person’s story through births, marriages, and deaths; add to it with names of parents, siblings, and children; and round it out with an anecdote or two about hobbies and professional achievements. Maybe that’s why my father had a hand in […] Read more



The ALUS revolution

From its beginnings in Manitoba 12 years ago, ALUS has evolved into the next generation of Canadian conservation

In response to the Manitoba Co-operator’s March 22 editorial, “Go ask ALUS,” we at ALUS Canada would like to add to the history of ALUS and its current status. Many farmers in Manitoba will remember ALUS as a homegrown idea. A dozen years later, ALUS can rightly be called the next generation of Canadian conservation. […] Read more


Seventy crops

A life of farming has taught this farmer some valuable lessons

Shortly after he turns 86 on April 10, Eugene Glock will begin planting his 70th corn crop on the Butler County, NE farm he operates with his son. “He runs the place,” explains Gene by telephone, “and I’m the hired hand. I plant all the corn, though.” And, the Lord willing, he adds, he will […] Read more



Rail had it easier when the wheat board existed

According to Gerry Ritz, that’s because the CWB shipped grain in ‘dribs and drabs’

Former agriculture minister and Conservative MP Gerry Ritz appeared before the House of Commons agriculture committee during an emergency meeting March 19 in Ottawa to discuss the grain transportation backlog in Western Canada. Alistair MacGregor, the NDP MP for Cowichan —Malahat — Langford in British Columbia asked Ritz about the former Canadian Wheat Board’s role […] Read more


Trade wars and food fights

It would appear Bill Morneau is happy fiddling while our economy burns

Bill Morneau is perhaps an influential figure in Trudeau’s cabinet, but he’s no finance minister. Given the budget he presented late last month, Minister Morneau may be more of a social justice enabler. Supporting more diversity, equality and inclusiveness is obviously critical to the betterment of our society, but most Canadians do expect more from […] Read more