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Our History: August 1978

One of the earliest combine monitors in Western Canada was advertised by Smith-Roles in our August 17, 1978 issue.

Above the ad was a story about the second year of tests of zero tillage at seven farms in northwestern Manitoba. A Manitoba Agriculture representative said it seemed to be working well. “Neighbours were skeptical at first, but their attitudes have changed drastically during the two months since seeding.”

However, he said the system had backfired on some farms where the owners tried to bypass some of the new management rules. “Whatever you do, don’t jump into zero tillage as a shortcut method. We’ve seen this trend, and we couldn’t tell the crop from the weeds.”

We reported that total 1977-78 crop year exports of 20.1 million tonnes were 10 per cent above the previous year and just one per cent below the 1972-73 record. With a week left to go in the current crop year, exports were at 43.7 million tonnes.

A big crop was expected and there was “frantic demand” for storage bins. Demand for 1978 was said to be double that of 1977 which in turn was double the previous year.

In our classified section, a new John Deere 7700 combine was advertised at $45,000, and a JD 4040 tractor for $21,000. A farm of 480 acres near Reston, with 320 acres cultivated, a five-bedroom house and a barn was offered at $39,000 per quarter.

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