GFM Network News


On-farm research can best answer producer questions

On-farm research can best answer producer questions

Good things happen when farmers take field research into commercial farms

For most people agriculture research starts and ends with the small-plot work of research scientists and plant breeders at places like the Brandon Research Centre. Passing by their fields along the Grand Valley Road during the growing season reveals a patchwork quilt of small plots looking at everything from disease resistance to trait expression. There are some good reasons for the

Bill Legg, a veteran barley breeder at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Brandon Research Centre, is retiring soon. His work was recognized by the Prairie Grain Development Committee March 1 in Winnipeg.

Veteran AAFC barley breeder Bill Legge retiring

AC Metcalfe was a huge hit with farmers, maltsters and brewers and one of his best-known career achievements

Bill Legge, the plant breeder who developed AC Metcalfe, Western Canada’s most popular two-row malting barley for around 15 years, is retiring. Legge has been breeding barley at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) Brandon Research Centre for 30 years, Tom Fetch, an AAFC plant pathologist and chair of the Prairie Grain Development Committee (PGDC), said


Rod Merryweather, CEO of FP Genetics, asking the Prairie Recommending Committee for Wheat, Rye and Triticale Feb. 26 to vote in favour of giving Elgin ND, a high-yielding American Dark Northern Spring wheat, a three-year interim registration for market development purposes.

Nine new CWRS wheats recommended for registration

Sixteen of the 36 cultivars reviewed were automatically endorsed

A record 36 cultivars sought the Prairie Recommending Committee for Wheat, Rye and Triticale’s support for registration at the committee’s annual meeting here Feb. 23 to 26. The committee of experts representing the grain industry from breeders and farmers to seed companies, marketers and end-users, assesses new cultivars to see if they meet the agronomic,

Cereal research programs set back a season from summer flooding

Cereal research programs set back a season from summer flooding

2014’s flooding is the latest along in the growing season 
anyone can remember, say BRC staff

Flood waters that lapped close to the doorsteps of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Brandon Research Centre last month also submerged the plot sites of cereal research programs, and that means no data for researchers this year. All three programs have been set back a season due to data lost after their plots were inundated by

Wheat breeder Stephen Fox has left Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada to work on canola for DL Seeds. Changing jobs means Fox won’t have to move with his family after AAFC closes its Winnipeg Cereal Research Centre.  photo: allan dawson

Winnipeg-based Ag Canada wheat breeder goes private

Stephen Fox, an Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researcher and developer of such popular hard red spring wheat varieties as Kane and AC Unity, is leaving the federal government to work in the private sector. Fox will join DL Seeds next month, as a canola breeder at its Winnipeg facility. “It will be an exciting change


AAFC Brandon beef research cuts condemned

The Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) Research Centre at Brandon is losing eight full-time employees, 850 head of cattle and $300,000 a year in revenue because the federal government is shutting down its beef research program. Whether the herd is sold or moved, it will be the first time in the centre’s 127-year history without

The axe is falling again at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Union officials predict 400 job losses following Workforce Adjustment notices issued to almost 700 staff May 9. Beef research at the Brandon Research Centre is one of the casualties.  

Hundreds of jobs cut at Agriculture Canada

Farmers question the 
federal government’s 
commitment to publicly funded agricultural research

by Allan Dawson Almost 700 Agriculture and Agri-Food (AAFC) employees across Canada, including 55 in Manitoba, have been notified their jobs are on the line. Their unions say the notifications are part of a plan to eliminate an estimated 400 jobs as the federal government tries to cut spending. The Brandon Research Station’s beef research

Is it time to rethink your phosphorus management?

Farmers may need to rethink their phosphorus management due to the dramatic shift in Manitoba acres towards canola and soybeans at the expense of cereals, an Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researcher says. Cynthia Grant, a soil management and fertility specialist with the Brandon Research Centre told the Manitoba Agronomy Conference farmers are growing more crops


Spurge-eating beetles may turn the tide in war on invasive weed

They’re slow workers, but spurge-eating beetles can have a big impact on infested pastures and hay land

Having found a beetle with a taste for leafy spurge, researchers are now trying to figure out how to get the insects to gobble up more of the noxious, invasive weed. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researchers from Brandon Research Centre are in the final year of a three-year study of beetles chowing down on leafy

Cereal Research Centre axed

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Cereal Research Centre will be shuttered within two years, but a senior department official says much of its work will continue. Industry leaders are less confident in the wake of last week’s announcement to close the facility that earned Western Canada its breadbasket reputation as part of a five to 10