Latest articles

Editorial: Unknown origin

“Life, uh… finds a way.” Those words, uttered by actor Jeff Goldblum in the 1993 science fiction blockbuster “Jurassic Park,” leapt to mind last week with word that a genetically modified wheat had been found along a field access road in southern Alberta. Goldblum’s character was blue-skying about exactly how a cohort of all-female dinosaurs […] Read more

Editorial: Reimagining leftovers

Sometimes deciding what to feed the family after a long, arduous day juggling daycare, jobs and traffic seems overwhelmingly complicated. If the May 31 press release from the U.S.-based Tyson Innovation Lab is any indication, deciding what we’re going to put into our mouths next is about to get more cluttered with new products, new […] Read more

Editorial: Gluten-free bacon?

It was enough to spoil my breakfast. As I opened a package of bacon to cook while camping on the holiday weekend, I learned from the label that it was “gluten free.” Gluten-free bacon? I was confused. Since when does bacon, which comes from animals, contain gluten, which is one of the components of the […] Read more

Editorial: Come together

Probably the single word that best expresses the fundamental nature of the agriculture sector when it comes to policy is ‘fractious.’ Looking at the synonyms for this word is a revealing exercise: stubborn, irritable, testy, unruly, disorderly, ornery, scrappy, touchy, and my personal favourite, indomitable. It’s a sector that loves a good fight and, by […] Read more

Editorial: Similar but not the same

After decades of watching the sector consolidate around them, it seems as though agriculture industry associations and groups have now decided this is also the right strategy for them. We’ve seen a handful of Manitoba commodity groups working together and now promoting the concept of a merger into a single larger group. The aim is […] Read more

Editorial: In the weeds

Canada has a brewing weed problem, and we’re not talking about the looming legalization of cannabis. This is an older problem, but with a modern twist, in the form of constant selection pressure from chemical control products and the resulting herbicide-resistant weeds. Manitoba farmers have the dubious distinction of being among the first in the […] Read more

Editorial: End of an era

[UPDATED: May 17, 2018] This week a chapter in the agriculture history of Manitoba quietly closed. Winnipeg has loudly proclaimed itself the heart of Canada’s grain trade since the early days of commercial agriculture on the Prairies. Nothing represented that more than the trading of grain-based derivatives, an important economic activity in the downtown core […] Read more

Editorial: A silver lining

No one would look at the ongoing struggle to move grain to port position this winter as a positive thing. It’s been a long and exhausting grind for everyone involved from the farmer through to the railways. Challenging weather met understaffed and underequipped railways and the result was poor service, scant grain movement and expensive […] Read more

Editorial: Farmland goes ‘loonie’

Farm Credit Canada’s most recent survey of farmland value in Canada landed this week, with a gentle thud. Thud because it showed surprisingly durable gains in farmland values, despite the lower crop values of the past several years, which economic theory at least initially suggests should not be the case. J.P. Gervais, FCC’s chief agricultural […] Read more

Editorial: Why all the fuss?

Canada’s dairy system has figured prominently in the rhetorical storm surrounding NAFTA renegotiations. The Canadian government has so far remained steadfastly opposed to any significant change. Two documents that surfaced recently help explain why. The first, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s “Regulatory Economic Impact Analysis of the Final Decision to Establish a California Federal Milk […] Read more