GFM Network News

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Editor’s Take: Playing the canola game

Two years ago, when China severely curtailed imports of Canadian canola by suspending the licences of Canada’s two largest grain companies, most saw a disaster about to unfold. The ginned-up claim was around the quality of Canadian canola seed, specifically pests like weed seeds and plant diseases such as blackleg. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency,

Editorial: Effective ag stabilization programs a must

It’s tempting to look into the shadows for a deep, dark conspiracy behind the three Prairie provinces’ reluctance to fully support AgriStability. The farm income support program, cost shared 60-40 by the federal and provincial governments, compensates participating farmers if their farm income minus eligible expenses drops below a certain threshold. Farmers and their organizations

Editor’s Take: Governments need to provide clarity — quickly

The past year has proven — on many fronts — that the actions, inactions and inattentiveness of government can have an outsized impact on farms. As our reporter Geralyn Wichers writes in the March 25 issue of the Co-operator, the federal government has finally clarified the rules around farmers bringing temporary foreign workers into the

Editor’s Take: International relationship management

As an exporting nation Canada will always be dependent on maintaining decent relationships with other countries around the globe — and that’s frequently easier said than done. Think of our closest neighbour the U.S. A close relationship with it is inescapable, as it’s both right next door and an economic and military superpower. Ordinarily that

Editorial: Good times, great opportunities

It’s well documented that the pandemic has had an uneven effect on Canadian incomes and businesses. While some have suffered greatly due to the disruptions caused by lockdowns, others have experienced an unprecedented surge in spending ability, or alternatively, debt-reduction capacity, because of the limits on how and where they can spend money. Looking back,

Equipping young people with good food skills will help them and all Canadians.

Editor’s Take: Kitchen aid

Earlier this winter I had the chance to give an old friend a call and spend an hour or so catching up. We were talking about how our lives have changed due to COVID and how we haven’t welcomed a lot of these changes, but some have actually been good. One thing we both remarked

Paying farmers to store carbon in their soils is, at least in theory, a win-win scenario.

Editorial: The carbon credit reality

Canadian farmers, industry and governments should pay close heed to the recent announcement that one of Canada’s largest food processors has inked a deal to buy carbon credits from American farmers. Maple Leaf Foods will pay $20 per tonne to U.S.-based Indigo Ag for carbon stored on American farms applying soil-building practices. It represents a

Editor’s Take: Child care a necessity

It was the spring of 1965, and my parents had just returned to the farm after spending their first four years of marriage on a grand adventure of sorts, living, working and studying in other parts of Canada. First, they travelled to Newfoundland, where my father worked with 4-H Canada, organizing clubs in the new,

But rural Manitoba continues to badly lag urban Manitoba when it comes to accessing the much-touted information superhighway.

Editor’s Take: The digital divide

It was a pleasant, if bitterly cold, winter evening. The Winnipeg Jets were battling the Edmonton Oilers on one laptop screen, while my spouse’s family were catching up on a Zoom call on the other. As we closed the gap COVID has imposed amongst us, I couldn’t help but reflect how nice it would be

Editorial: Maintaining independent agricultural extension is key

The Manitoba government’s announcement that it will close agricultural offices and consolidate services this spring is a significant shift, but one that reflects a modern reality. As of April 1, public-facing services will be delivered out of 10 regional service centres instead of 21 and they will be staffed by provincial Agriculture Department representatives, crop