Latest articles

Organic agriculture no panacea: study

Too many uncertainties exist to say it’s the only solution

Organic agriculture has benefits but it is not a silver bullet for global food security, a new study says. Too much scientific uncertainty exists for organic agriculture to be considered a better alternative to conventional farming, says the study by two University of British Columbia researchers. “(O)rganic agriculture cannot be the Holy Grail for our […] Read more

Earls mends fences after beef controversy

Restaurant chain will have all-Canadian beef this summer, after its U.S.-sourcing misstep

Phil Gallagher began his talk with an apology. Then he kept apologizing all the way through. “I’m a proud Canadian, just like all of you, and I learned a really hard lesson last year,” he said in concluding his address to the recent Manitoba Beef Producers annual meeting. “I hope to never make the same […] Read more

Beef producers cautious about herd expansion proposal

Lack of profitability and uncertainty over where to market animals are two key challenges

Manitoba cattle producers aren’t against a government plan to substantially increase the province’s beef herd but have a lot of questions about how to get there. Growing those numbers will require more producers, larger herds and more acres, according to Manitoba Beef Producers. Exactly where those will come from isn’t clear, especially considering the cost […] Read more

U.S. trade rumblings unnerve Canada’s beef producers

Uncertainty rules as 
Trump eyes trade deals, 
but nobody is sure if Canada is in his line of fire

An atmosphere of uncertainty hangs over the Canadian cattle industry as it awaits a possible trade war with the U.S. The newly minted U.S. President Donald Trump has repeatedly signalled his 
intention to either scrap or renegotiate NAFTA, which has helped make the U.S. Canada’s largest market for beef and cattle exports. A more immediate […] Read more

Farm building code streamlined

The provincial government says the move is part of its red tape reduction initiative

The Manitoba government has begun a new anti-red tape initiative by streamlining the provincial building code for farm structures. The Manitoba Farm Building Code will be repealed and dovetailed into the Manitoba Building Code, with specific provisions for farm buildings. It’s the first action in a government campaign to eliminate or simplify regulatory requirements that […] Read more

Farmers watch nervously as moisture piles up

Government readiness for spring flood questioned as new federal and provincial administrations lack flood-fighting experience

The possible threat of major flooding in Manitoba this spring has Keystone Agricultural Producers worried rookie governments in Winnipeg and Ottawa may not be prepared for it. The combination of fiscal restraint and flood damage could produce a big problem if initial signs of widespread spring flooding turn out to be true, said Dan Mazier, […] Read more

Gray jay nominated as Canada’s national bird

As the only bird to nest and even hatch in winter it’s a worthy choice for Canada

Move over, snowy owl and Canada goose. A new rival is about to knock you off your national perch. A two-year search by the Royal Canadian Geographical Society has nominated the gray jay as Canada’s national bird. The choice has raised eyebrows in some quarters because the gray jay isn’t exactly a household name compared […] Read more

Old is new in hog barn approvals

Public opposition has not gone away after a decade of no development

The first application under a new protocol for approving hog barns in Manitoba has run into an old problem: local opposition. The Rural Municipality of Oakview council last month turned down an application for a 6,000-space feeder/finish operation near Rivers even though a technical review committee report said it met the necessary requirements. Council gave […] Read more

Helping city people reconnect with the farm

Agritourism operators like John Penner are a growing link between rural and urban

Ask John Penner what he considers his mission in life and he’ll say he’s a middleman between farmers and city folk. What he wants to do is help urbanites disconnected from the farm understand where their food comes from. “I want them to know that an egg comes from a chicken, not Safeway, that pumpkins […] Read more

Herbicide resistance quietly growing problem in Manitoba

Multi-pronged weed control strategies that go beyond chemicals are urged by researchers

Farmers may lose the war against herbicide-resistant weeds if they don’t start using other forms of control besides chemicals, a University of Manitoba weed scientist says. Herbicide resistance, common in other countries, is starting to appear in Western Canada and it’s just a matter of time before it becomes prevalent here too, Rob Gulden warns. […] Read more