GFM Network News


Adding heat, such as from a portable direct flame heater like this one, can turn “poor drying days into good drying days.”

Now is the time to start thinking about conditioning canola

Having the right setup and the manpower capacity for turning bins are keys to avoiding spoilage

Two late and wet harvests in a row have greatly increased canola spoilage — and upped the need to have a conditioning plan in place early on. “It’s really important to consider this topic now when there is time rather than being in the heat of harvest and having to make decisions,” said Lorne Grieger,

A direct-fired system using an NAD fan with supplemental heating (in this case, propane). Researchers were surprised to find direct systems were not as efficient as indirect ones.  

What’s the best bang for your grain-drying buck?

No one really knows for sure but a research project is looking for answers

As producers know all too well, grain drying can be very expensive. But what isn’t known is which grain-conditioning system offers the most bang for the buck. “There’s a real gap in the understanding of the efficiency of — for example — natural air-drying (NAD) systems with supplemental heating,” said Lorne Grieger of the Prairie Agricultural Research Institute, which


The back side of a standard New Holland boom retrofitted with the WEED-IT Quadro. Retailer Croplands Equipment sells the Quadro in either a retrofit kit which allows it to be installed on most types of existing sprayer booms or as a120-foot Millennium boom.

Smart sprayer tech developing quickly

This technology isn’t quite a done deal yet, but it’s now more science fact than fiction

Producers have been hearing about weed-targeting spot-spraying sensors for some time, but it’s always seemed to be the stuff of science fiction. In some cases, however, the future is now while in others it’s coming quickly — it all depends on the type of sensor tech you’re interested in. Well-known spraying expert Tom Wolf separates precision spot-spraying tech into

Today’s drones are great at selecting pastures and tracking cattle, can read an ear tag from 70 metres up, and offer spectral imaging a hundred times more powerful than 
satellites, says researcher John Church. And while they’re not good at herding, drone technology is close to offering health assessments of individual cows.

Plunging prices and better tech should put drones on your radar

Drones with sophisticated imaging tech can be robust precision tools for managing cattle on pasture

Producers are always being pitched new technology, and the marketing din is arguably louder than ever in this age of precision agriculture. So when producers ask if unmanned aerial vehicles are just expensive toys, it’s a fair question. While John Church would be the first to admit he has a lot of fun researching the

Calgary-based Bio-Cycle Solutions says it has spread its compost-based product on about four million acres.

It’s cheap and plentiful but is elemental sulphur a fertilizer option?

Calgary company touts the benefits of its compost-based product

[UPDATED: Oct. 10, 2019] When you consider the cost and bulkiness of conventional sulphur fertilizers, producers can hardly be blamed for seeking out alternatives to meet their crops’ sulphate needs. One of these alternatives is elemental sulphur — a byproduct of the oil and gas industry that is plentiful and cheap in Western Canada. But


Backers of the certified sustainable beef program are urging more producers to sign up as demand exceeds supply.

Fast-food chain joins beef sustainability effort

Harvey’s signs on to program as demand for certified sustainable beef continues to grow

Fast-food chain Harvey’s has become the latest major buyer to sign up for the ‘sustainable’ beef initiative. But even while the number of retailers is increasing, most cattle producers are taking a ‘wait and see’ approach that has resulted in a gap between supply and demand. However, that gap is closing, said Ponoka rancher Greg

This is an example of an intact fire separation that did its job and prevented fire from spreading through the barn.

Simple steps for avoiding the nightmare of a barn fire

Annual electrical inspections, hard-wiring equipment and good housekeeping are proven risk reducers

A barn fire can be one of the most distressing disasters on a farm — no amount of insurance can rectify the loss when livestock are killed this way. Although there are fewer barn fires today, the pure destruction factor has never been higher. For example, Ontario had 89 barn fires from 2014 to 2018,

A CN train hauling grain cars circles the loop at GrainsConnect’s Maymont, Sask. loop-track/power-on terminal. The locomotive never has to be detached from the train when loading or unloading, which cuts the time it spends at an elevator by up to half compared to conventional grain terminals.

Don’t stop: Loop tracks set to revolutionize shipping

If you never decouple the locomotive, you never lose braking pressure – and that's huge

The loop-track/power-on grain terminals popping up throughout the Prairies are kind of like the marines — no rail car gets left behind. That’s one example of how these terminals improve efficiency in Canada’s grain transportation system, said Warren Stow, president of GrainsConnect Canada, whose company is currently building two such facilities in the Alberta communities


There’s no shortage of data on today’s farms but the most important number — profit per acre — is not easy to determine.

The search for a ‘win-win’ solution to unprofitable acres

Precision agriculture meets precision conservation in ongoing profitability mapping research

Farming and farmland conservation sometimes seem at odds with each other — a win for one is seen as a loss for the other. After all, taking land out of production for conservation purposes is seen as a loss of productive farmland, while the ecological community sometimes views intensive ag production as a threat to

Four steps for better seeding this spring

It’s an age-old conundrum: You need to expand so you acquire more acres of land to get more return, but then the rush to get a crop in means seeding some acres too early, too late, or too fast. “There’s a lot of potential for making a mistake when it comes to seeding,” said Harry