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Editorial: A fine balance

Where does one individual’s rights end, and another’s begin? One famous definition runs like this: “The right to swing my arms in any direction ends where your nose begins.” It’s a straightforward common-sense approach that attempts to balance individual liberty with the rights of others. However, it’s also a very simplistic black-or-white view. The reality […] Read more


Opinion: Animal activism and farmer safety

The Crown’s recent decision to drop charges against an animal activist has fuelled frustration, fear, and action in Ontario’s farming community. The activist, who video-recorded herself breaking into a barn near Lucan and stealing two pigs, belongs to a group that opposes animal agriculture. On May 1st, the Crown attorney’s office in London dropped break-and-enter […] Read more



Editorial: Brand name

As the writing began to appear on the wall for the Canadian Wheat Board, many wondered what would become of Brand Canada. The nation has long enjoyed a global reputation as a producer of high-quality milling wheat. Canada has been a dominant player in this lofty quality grouping since the legendary Red Fife and Marquis […] Read more


Opinion: Fuel the market, not the trade war

Complicating an already complicated spring, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has announced a broad, new scheme that could pay U.S. farmers up to US$14.5 billion. This second bailout plan will not feature a by-the-bushel payment like last year’s nearly US$9-billion bailout because, Perdue explained, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) doesn’t want the new […] Read more



Comment: Death by regulation

Canadian companies are being hampered by too much government oversight

The regulation of food industries has always been necessary. In the western world, successive governments have successfully played the anti-business card by implementing regulations so that consumers and the public at large feel someone is looking out for them. But at times, governments are known to flirt with populist measures in their attempt to gain […] Read more


Editorial: Back to normal

A farmer who’s been around the block can’t be blamed for watching the current economic and political situation with growing nervousness. Anyone who was associated with a Prairie farm during the 1980s and ’90s has no choice but to remember those painful lost years, especially in the crops sector. Income dried up, losses mounted and […] Read more



Growing young maize seedling in cultivated agricultural farm field with modern technology concepts

Comment: Talkin’ about my generation

This farm generation is wrestling with bits and bytes in their generational revolution

It’s a truism in agriculture that food-growing technology undergoes an industry-shaking metamorphosis every generation. When Grandpa (both yours and mine) farmed, better seed like hybrids came in and oat-eating horsepower went out. His sons, our fathers, were early adopters of anhydrous ammonia, 2,4-D, and, whoa, combines. Twenty-five years later, our generational farm-changing moment arrived with […] Read more




Editorial: Wild things roaming

A few years back, an acquaintance returned to school at mid-career and studied natural resource management. He was lucky enough to land a job with the province that first summer, checking boats at a stop on the Trans-Canada Highway at the Manitoba-Ontario border, to prevent the spread of zebra mussels. I mentioned that this sounded […] Read more


Comment: Protecting trade in a protectionist era

Canada needs to respond to trade barriers by using dispute settlement mechanisms

The world has become protectionist. There is, justifiably, much focus on issues with China. But it is not just China. Canadian agriculture commodities are blocked in India, Italy, Saudi Arabia, and Vietnam and face issues in key markets like Peru. Countries are turning inward, finding new ways to block trade. How do we protect our […] Read more




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