Latest articles


Catastrophic crop loss highlights need for small-farm insurance

Four years after the Small Scale Farm Manitoba report, crop insurance for small-scale food producers doesn’t seem to be on the province’s radar

It was shaping up to be a banner year for Justin Girard. Hearts and Roots, which Girard runs with wife Britt Embry, is a certified organic farm that sells veggies through farmers’ markets, wholesale and Instagram-worthy subscription boxes. But on July 14, instead of shots of glistening greens or farm dog Merle, Hearts and Roots […] Read more




Provincial parties talk vision for agriculture ahead of election

Ahead of releasing official agricultural platforms, the parties talk trade, rural health care, African swine fever, and climate change

With campaign season officially in full swing for the provincial election, the Manitoba Co-operator caught up with the parties to talk agriculture. The parties we spoke to all polled regularly above five per cent for the past year. All parties had plenty to say about their vision for agriculture in Manitoba, bridging the rural/urban divide, […] Read more


Free-range farmer benefits from raising animals the old-fashioned way

‘Mother Nature never had a confinement operation,’ Andreas Zinn says

Andreas Zinn says he was born to raise animals. If the autobiography he wrote at age six is an indication, that’s true. It documents his plans for the future: get up early, raise crops, raise chickens and pigs. It was a solid prediction. At age 13, Andreas got his first goat as a birthday present. […] Read more



Soil degradation a costly global issue

About a third of the world’s soil is degraded, which has economic and food security implications

When Prairie-dwellers think of soil erosion, they may think of iconic photos from the Dirty ’30s: towering clouds of black soil blowing across desolate land, teacups turned upside down against drifting grit. But as Francis Zvomuya told the classroom of farmers and agronomists at the Global Forum on Soil Stewardship, soil degradation is far from […] Read more


Hail damage and dry weather hamper grain and forage crops

Looking surprisingly good despite stresses

Severe thunderstorms scattered hail across southern Manitoba on July 31 and mangled a few crops. Crop insurance claims were just beginning to come in on the afternoon of August 1, said David Van Deynze of Manitoba Agriculture Services Corporation. Van Deynze said they were seeing a bank of claims from the U.S. border, ranging up […] Read more



Carman event serves up common ground on soil health practices

Canadian and African agronomists shared perspectives on conservation agriculture at a recent Canadian Foodgrains Bank forum

Jocelyn Velestuk stood in front of the research station classroom filled with people and confessed to an addiction of sorts. “I am obsessed with soil,” the Saskatchewan farmer and agronomist told her audience. “I even had a mud-themed birthday party when I was young,” she said in a later interview. “The first soil science class […] Read more


VIDEO: Soil stewardship event digs into soil health

Foodgrains forum on soil conservation takes centre stage at Ian N. Morrison Research farm in Carman

Manitoba Co-operator reporter Geralyn Wichers talks with Dr. Francis Zvumoya (above) from the University of Manitoba’s Soil Science Department about soil degradation across the globe and what people in Manitoba are doing to support soil stewardship. Manitoba Co-operator reporter Geralyn Wichers talks with James Kornelson, Public Engagement Coordinator for the Canadian Foodgrains Bank about its […] Read more



Volunteerism keeps loneliness at bay for young farm couple

Pam Bailey and Rauri Qually maintain a century-old farm near Dacotah, and say they do it because they love it, not because it’s easy

For Rauri Qually and Pam Bailey, a young farm couple, getting involved in commodity and agriculture boards is a way to protect what they love — and a way to cope with the solitary farm lifestyle. “It’s lonely here. I don’t know how my dad did this all by himself,” Rauri told the Manitoba Co-operator […] Read more


Young Manitoba farmer right where she wants to be — working beside her dad on the family farm

‘The goal is to farm,' says Fiona Jochum, who farms near St. Francois Xavier

Fiona Jochum has the weight of her first crop on her shoulders, and thus far it’s been a doozy. Flea beetles, cutworms and dry conditions have hampered growth in her fields, but Fiona, 25, doesn’t let it get her down. “Even though these things stress me out, I still love it. I still want to […] Read more