Latest articles


Editorial: Rubber meets road on trade deals

It’s an article of faith in many parts of Canada’s agriculture economy that trade is good, the freer the better. In the run-up to recent deals with the European Union (CETA) and a group of Asian-Pacific trading partners (CPTPP,) many of your industry groups were among the loudest and most supportive voices. Both are now […] Read more


Editorial: Back to business

I’ll never forget my young daughter’s reaction a few years ago to the first day back to school after Christmas break. As I tried to gently shake her awake and tell it was time to get ready for school, she peered at me bleary eyed and wailed: “So there’s no more holidays? You mean it’s […] Read more



Editorial: The slow road to rural Internet growth

The other day I had the opportunity to sit down with some of the equipment manufacturers developing the latest precision agriculture technology. The discussion was both interesting and informative and hinted at some tantalizing developments as this system really begins to get going. But it also revealed just how dependent the whole thing is going […] Read more


Editorial: Staying safe on the farm

Agriculture regularly tops surveys and studies of dangerous professions. Despite the process of going high tech, every season there’s still a heaping helping of manual labour, heavy equipment, confined spaces and moving parts. Add the exhaustion of long hours and mental stress and it can be a recipe for disaster. This all added up to […] Read more



Editorial: Getting it right

It’s early in the winter farm meeting season but already seed royalties are promising to be one of the year’s evergreen topics. That’s hardly surprising, after all, seed is a fundamental building block for any grain farm. It’s also something that’s seen a lot of changes over the past few decades. Most of the crops […] Read more


Editorial: Hung out to dry

It’s a tall order trying to obey rules when you don’t know what they are, but that’s exactly the situation some Manitoba farmers are facing as they try to preserve this year’s weather-damaged crop. The German novelist Franz Kafka captured this nicely in his 1925 novel The Trial, where the protagonist, one Josef K. is […] Read more



Pork industry chalking up wins

While poor prices have grabbed the headlines the long-term trends are more positive

The Manitoba Pork Council is quietly celebrating a string of low-key wins during its fall producer meetings. From falling numbers of PED cases to a modest barn-building boom and new trade deals that will stabilize and expand markets, long-term trends look positive, the group says. Why it matters: The industry needs to stay focused on […] Read more


Editorial: Stuck in the middle

Manitoba farmers are caught in the middle of a nasty spat between Ottawa and Broadway. The province recently scrapped its carbon tax proposal after learning Ottawa would be imposing its own. That concerned local farm groups as the provincial proposal had some hard-fought recognition for the precarious position of the province’s farm business community. Most […] Read more



Editorial: Changing times on the farm

I had the opportunity over Thanksgiving this year to reacquaint myself with driving a Peterbilt when the weather lined up to actually allow a few days of combining. Actually, there were three Peterbilts, as my brother seems to be working with a collection. There’s the best of the three, a nondescript brown unit that quietly […] Read more


Editorial: Leadership needed

One of the most important roles of our political leadership is right there in the job title. We hire these folks to lead. Often that means making the hard decisions and telling people what they won’t want to hear. Naturally some are better at it than others. The late U.S. president Harry Truman popularized the […] Read more