GFM Network News

Editorial: Agriculture slips through the safety net

Canadian agriculture is very proud of its prominence in the national economy, and rightly so. As StatsCan noted in a 2019 report, agriculture and food contributed $49 billion to the nation’s GDP in 2015, or 2.6 per cent of total GDP. That’s been a target of growth too, as various projection and government plans have

$16 billion pledged to U.S. farmers due to COVID-19

$16 billion pledged to U.S. farmers due to COVID-19

USDA predicts lower prices for most commodities, excluding wheat and rice

While the Canadian Federation of Agriculture asks for ad hoc subsidies to help Canadian farmers to offset lower incomes expected due to COVID-19, the United States administration could spend as much as $25 billion to help its farmers due to the pandemic. American farmers will receive billions of dollars of subsidies through direct payments. But

canada flag

Editor’s Take: Canada at a crossroads

According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Canada remains either a leader or laggard in the realm of support for its agriculture sector, depending on how one approaches the problem. A free market idealist who favours letting the invisible hand sort it all out might think less support to producers is a

A combination of late planting and soggy soils can create a host of problems.

Comment: Looks like 2019 is one of THOSE years

While the Canadian Prairies are dry, the U.S. is struggling with very wet conditions

For many of us, certain years are permanently imprinted in the brain: 1983, 1993, 1995. While rainfall is generally welcomed, there are those years when one wishes that it would just hold off long enough to get the crop in the ground. Surely 2019 is destined to join that company. Worse than that, it looks

one dollar banknote among wheat grains

Is it the end of the ag trade world as we know it?

Trade tensions, ad hoc American subsidies and surplus stocks raise the spectre of the 1980s — an era of grain subsidy wars and low prices

As Manitoba farmers wrap up seeding they face more uncertainty than usual, including the potential unravelling of the international, rules-based trading system that has become almost as essential as rain. Meanwhile, crop prices are down after a decade of relatively good returns spurring global production to exceed demand, exacerbated now by African swine fever decimating

Wheat and US dollars

U.S. trade double standard confirmed

American trade expert Joe Glauber sees continued pressure on Canada’s supply 
management and rising domestic farm subsidies in developing countries

Joe Glauber confirmed what many Canadian farmers believed during the Doha Round of World Trade Organization (WTO) talks from 2001 to 2008: the Americans were promoting farm subsidy cuts, while increasing their own. In 2001 the United States spent $10 billion in market loans to offset low prices for U.S. wheat, corn and soybeans, Glauber,

Close-up of a bundle of wheat

Look back to understand how low wheat prices are

Once inflation adjusted, today’s wheat prices are at historic lows, even below Depression-era prices

Wheat prices are the lowest in actual value since the Civil War, and only farmers are aware of this. Here is some food for thought. I recently harvested my 64th wheat crop and produced more bushels this year than any other year. Many Kansas farmers have had the same experience. Because of record yields, most

Concept of making money agriculture

Editorial: Stuck in time

Is it time for a fundamental rethink of Canada’s agriculture trade policy? That simple question is, these days, tantamount to heresy in the agriculture sector, long preoccupied with trade issues. However, a new policy note from the independent research group Agri-Food Economic Systems in Guelph, Ontario, suggests it might be worth asking. The research team,

Farmer in wheat field

Canadian wheat growers hit by subsidy effects

Advanced developing nations subsidize wheat growers, 
hurting farmers from exporting nations

Canadian farmers are among those being disadvantaged by wheat subsidies in advanced developing countries like China, India, Turkey and Brazil, according to two U.S. groups. The U.S. Wheat Associates and the U.S. National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) pegged the annual cost to Canadian farmers at about 249,000 tonnes in lost sales and $251.9 million