GFM Network News


A hay sample being emptied into a bucket.

Forage analysis valuable in developing winter feeding program

Determining the nutrient content of forages and other feeds through laboratory analysis is the best way to design a nutrition program that meets livestock requirements

Laboratory analysis to determine the quality of feedstuffs was developed more than 150 years ago. “Since that time, the ability to accurately analyze forages has greatly improved, as has the ability to use results to improve livestock feed efficiency and performance,” says Janna Block, extension livestock systems specialist at NDSU’s Hettinger Research Extension Center. “However, this valuable management




Start stretching feed early in the season to make sure you’re not managing a late-winter crisis, extension staff say.

Shortage of livestock feed leads to balancing act

Cattle can eat anything from potatoes to grain byproducts, but coming up with the right nutrition for the right price is the challenge

It’s been a dismal weather year from start to finish — but at least there will be plenty of feed grain. That’s the searching for a silver lining thought among Manitoba livestock producers facing yet another year of scrimping and culling to get their cattle through the winter. Stressed pastures, silage harvest difficulties, extended feeding



About 4.7 million pounds of beef qualified for a Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef claim in 2018.

Catch-22: supply lags demand in sustainable beef

The Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef framework now needs to focus on financial sustainability and supply

Canada’s sustainable beef effort has reached the retail market, but now needs to work on its own financial sustainability and meeting demand. About 4.7 million pounds of beef qualified for a Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef claim in 2018, according to Cargill. The company is the only processor to currently deliver CRSB certified beef, part

Pastures are starting to show signs of life, but experts are still warning producers to take a second look at nutrition.

Livestock producers warned against premature turnout

Producers are frustrated with feed supplies, but experts say supplementing grazing will be key until pastures really start to sprout

Livestock producers are anxiously awaiting the greening of pastures, even as extension experts council caution. Producers may be reluctant to spend more money on feed, even if they can find it, but Manitoba Agriculture staff are warning against the temptation to put livestock out too early. Why it matters: Producers may be more than fed



Moisture-starved pastures have livestock foraging harder for feed, and provincial experts warn that toxic plants could be eaten accidentally.

Drought dangers raise the red flag on toxicity for cattle

Experts are warning livestock producers to look out for toxicity as cattle scramble for feed in the pasture, drought raises nitrate risk and water supplies dwindle

Feed shortage may not be the only threat lurking in Manitoba’s increasingly brown pastures. Manitoba Agriculture livestock specialist Jane Thornton says she would not be surprised by reports of poisoning from toxic plants or other toxicity issues as regular forage runs out. “Producers should look at what they have in their fields for poisonous plants,”

Drought in the winter wheat grazing area of the southern Plains caused early movement of calves from wheat pastures into feedlots.

Forced liquidation a cause of volatility in beef cattle prices

There are record meat supplies in the U.S., but demand has been boosted by the strong economy

Several producers recently expressed their frustration with the volatility in cattle prices. Price movements of several dollars can occur from one day to the next, and cash and futures market prices even seem to move in opposite directions at times. Of course, uncertainty causes market volatility, and a number of supply-and-demand challenges are adding to