GFM Network News


There are a number of things you need to get right when growing corn, says Sara Meidlinger, a market development specialist with Pride Seeds.

Cows love it but growing corn for silage or grazing can be tricky

Getting the crop off to a good start through seed selection and good seed placement is critical

Glacier FarmMedia – Corn can be an attractive option for feeding cattle, but there are a lot of specifics to consider when you choose to grow it. “Corn just tastes good and cows love it. It’s more palatable than barley, and it has a better dry matter intake,” Greg Paranych, agriculture field specialist with Alberta’s

This photo from barleyharvest.ca shows AC Bow — one of three newer varieties being recommended for growers this year — being harvested near Lethbridge late last summer. Although only accounting for 2.7 per cent of malt acres last year, AC Bow moved up to fifth spot in popularity. Another recommended variety, AAC Connect, took fourth spot at 5.2 per cent of acres while the third, CDC Fraser, was in seventh place (2.1 per cent of acres).

Newer and better malt varieties slowly starting to get some love

Maltsters still smitten with the old standards but the future belongs to new varieties, says expert

Glacier FarmMedia – It’s a slow process to get international maltsters to accept new barley varieties, partly because of unfamiliarity and partly because farmers aren’t growing enough of them. “They do prefer what they know, which are varieties like AC Metcalfe and CDC Copeland,” said Peter Watts, managing director of the Canadian Malting Barley Technical


An inflatable model of a

EU trade deal: High hopes replaced by frustration

Instead of billions in extra trade, agreement 
bogged down in fruitless talks on ‘technical’ trade barriers

Glacier FarmMedia – CETA is short for the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, but for many it’s become a term for frustration and disappointment. “When CETA was signed and ratified three years ago, there were lots of promises,” said Doug Sawyer, a cow-calf producer from Pine Lake, Alta. and co-chair of the foreign trade committee

Canola south of Ethelton, Sask. on Aug. 3, 2017. (Dave Bedard photo)

Supply chain working but canola groups have concerns

Federal field trials need to continue and growers need protective equipment, they say

There have been no issues so far with supplies of inputs and parts, transportation or oilseed processing during the pandemic, canola industry officials report. “We’ve been really focused on making sure farmers have access to inputs and resources to get the 2020 crop in the ground,” Canola Council of Canada president Jim Everson said during

Workers in the JBS beef plant at Brooks, Alta. appear in a screen shot from a 2018 corporate video. (JBS Canada video screengrab via YouTube)

Third major Alberta beef plant confirms COVID-19 cases

JBS in Brooks is the latest with infected workers, but will continue operations

UPDATED, April 17 — Cases of COVID-19 have now been confirmed at three of Alberta’s major beef packing plants. Three cases of COVID-19 were confirmed Wednesday at the JBS beef packing plant in Brooks, said Tom Hesse, Local 401 president with United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Canada. JBS Canada spokesman Cameron Bruett confirmed some


File photo of cattle being rounded up at a southern Alberta ranch. (Design Pics/Getty Images)

Foreign workers starting to arrive, livestock group says

About 2,000 have recently arrived, several thousand more here soon, feeders say

About 2,000 foreign workers have arrived in Canada in recent weeks and more should be here soon, an official with the National Cattle Feeders Association says. “There are about 4,000 more that are expected to arrive shortly, so the process is starting to work,” Janice Tranberg, the association’s president and CEO, said during a telephone

(Photo courtesy Canada Beef Inc.)

Cattle producers press for lower price insurance premiums

WLPIP is needed, but unused because premiums too expensive, CCA says

The Western Livestock Price Insurance Program is not functioning properly due to very high premiums and needs to be quickly revamped, says the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. “We’re having unprecedented volatility for markets. Having tools in place for farmers and ranchers has never been more important,” executive vice-president Dennis Laycraft said during a telephone town hall

(Bouillante/iStock/Getty Images)

Plummeting french fry sales have potato growers re-evaluating

Restaurant closures slash demand, though 'chip sales have been great'

French fry sales are down across North America as tens of thousands of restaurants have closed during COVID-19, meaning the potato industry has to adapt quickly. Companies that turn potatoes into french fries, wedges and hash browns are slowing down, because there isn’t enough space to store all the frozen product. In Alberta and Manitoba,


(Photo courtesy Canada Beef Inc.)

Beef demand soars as consumers ‘aggressively’ stock up

Surge in sales accompanied by a jump in people looking online for recipes

Canada’s beef demand has been strong during the pandemic. “Unlike previous disease outbreak issues, COVID-19 has not been about food safety or consumer confidence or issues with food products,” Canada Beef president Michael Young said during a recent online town hall. “Beef demand at retail is up 50 to 70 per cent. Consumers have aggressively

File photo of hogs in transit near Red Deer, Alta. (Stefonlinton/iStock/Getty Images)

Canada’s pork sector up to speed, aware of challenges

Processing plants enhancing biosecurity; producers being urged to watch their stress levels

They’re adding protective plexiglass shields, bringing in trailers to separate groups of workers, and boosting communication on biosecurity. It’s all part of an ongoing effort to ensure pork processing plants aren’t disrupted by COVID-19. “I’m very impressed by our packers, and for the workers for coming to work every day and being there and realizing