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In Brief… – for Sep. 8, 2011

Get on the list:Door-to-door

enumeration for the October 4 provincial general election is complete, but voters who were not home when the enumerator called can still have their names added to the voters’ list, Elections Manitoba says in a release. Prospective voters can contact their returning office to arrange for an election official to visit them at home. They may also go to the returning office to make any changes or additions. The preliminary voters’ list shows that approximately 712,000 voters throughout the province have been enumerated.

– Staff Prairie Malt to lower production: Prairie Malt Limited, a Canadian producer of malt for beer brewers, says it will reduce production and lay off 35 workers by the end of 2011, due to the end of a supply deal with a major customer.

“To ensure the competitiveness of Prairie Malt Limited, we are aligning production at the plant with current demand,” said company president Doug Eden.

The 34-year-old plant at Biggar, Saskatchewan is a joint venture of Cargill Ltd. and Viterra Inc. Canada is the largest exporter of malting barley. On their mark:Plans are already underway for the Manitoba Plowing Match October 1 and 2, just south of Alexander.

The plowing starts at 9 a.m. daily, with the horses plowing from 11 a.m. Tractor pulling will take place on Sunday, October 2 from 1 p.m. There is no charge for spectators.

Manitoba will be hosting the 2012 Canadian Plowing Championships, west of Brandon, so 2011 is an important year for the plowmen here in Manitoba to be on top form. – Staff Another bust:RCMP busted another marijuana grow op in late August, this time in the RM of Fisher near Hodgson, Man.

Investigation at the rural property revealed approximately 680 marijuana plants, as well as about 20 pounds of processed marijuana. The street value of the seizure is approximately $720,000.

Three males were arrested and charged: Robert Sean Price, age 40, from British Columbia, Daniel Leo Labrash, age 40, from British Columbia and Shawn Byron Steinthorson, age 29, from the RM of Siglunes, Man. – Staff Man run over by tractor:

A 70-year-old working on a farm in the RM of Mountain lost his life Aug. 24 after being run over by the tractor he was trying to start. The man suffered fatal injuries when the tractor moved forward without warning, RCMP say.

– Staff Spring floods costly for Arkansas:Arkansas farmers suffered a severe blow from this spring’s floods and stormy weather, with crop damage costing them US$335 million in lost farm income. Rice crops were the hardest hit in the state.

“The planting window was just made too vulnerable when these floods came,” said University of Arkansas economist Eric Wailes. “By the time the floods were over, they couldn’t replant.”

Arkansas accounts for nearly half of U.S. rice production, according to the Arkansas Rice Federation. Agriculture accounts for one in six jobs in the state.

Farm income soars in U.S.:

U.S. farm income will soar past $100 billion for the first time in 2011 thanks to rising cash receipts for crops and livestock.

U.S. farm income is forecast at $103.6 billion for 2011, up 31 per cent from 2010. Crop values are expected to rise by $33.6 billion. Corn prices, for example, are up nearly 70 per cent in the last year and posted an all-time high in June. Volatile energy prices will make their way to the bottom line, with total expenses forecast to increase by $32.5 billion in 2011, exceeding $300 billion for the first time. Mutant bird flu strain spreading:The United Nations is warning of a possible major resurgence of avian influenza and says a mutant strain of the H5N1 virus was spreading in Asia and elsewhere.

Bird flu infected 565 people since it first appeared in 2003, killing 331 of them, according to UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization.

The virus was eliminated from most of the 63 countries infected at its peak in 2006 after mass poultry culling, but since 2008 it has been expanding geographically in both poultry and wild birds, partly due to migration patterns, the agency said. Wrong date in grand opening story:The grand opening for the Bruce D. Campbell Farm &Food Discovery Centre is Friday, Sept. 16, not Sept. 15 as reported in the August 25 issue article “New centre brings farming to table” Aug. 25. – Staff

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