GFM Network News


Cattle values expected to drop in coming weeks

The chance of COVID-19 hitting packers again has cattle markets on edge

Feeder cattle prices at Manitoba’s cattle auctions have been steadily rising, though the rally isn’t expected to last for much longer. “With futures dropping and grain prices going up, I expect (prices) will stay steady or drop a bit next week,” Grunthal Livestock Auction Mart manager Harold Unrau said. Feed grain prices in Western Canada have been



China’s coronavirus testing chokes beef trade

Additional inspections, disinfections costly for importers

Beijing | Reuters — In a supermarket in downtown Beijing, refrigerator shelves normally filled with steak from around the world sit empty as tougher testing for the novel coronavirus creates supply bottlenecks and raises prices for importers. Fresh supplies of beef won’t arrive for days, a salesman at the Suning.com-owned Carrefour outlet told Reuters —

Canada’s mink farms brace for COVID

Producers have had time to increase biosecurity efforts at the farm level

Canada’s 40 mink farms are operating under heightened biosecurity requirements after reports of COVID-19 jumping from humans to mink in Europe. Alan Herscovici, an industry spokesperson who operates the website Truthaboutfur.com, said early reports out of Denmark and other European countries gave Canadian producers some time to prepare. “These farms have always had a certain

Centre Block at Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canada.

Grain Growers of Canada lobbies Parliament Hill

Agriculture can help restart Canada’s economy and the federal government can help by addressing some issues

Agriculture can help revitalize Canada’s post-COVID economy, but the federal government should clear the track for the sector. That means updating regulations to encourage technological innovation, improving market access for agricultural exports and recognizing farm practices that help the environment, says the Grain Growers of Canada (GGC). The organization, which represents 15 regional, provincial and national grain farmer groups,


Editor’s Take: Un-plandemic

It’s an old axiom: if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail. Nowhere, it would appear, is this truer than when it comes to battling the COVID-19 pandemic. As our Geralyn Wichers reports for the front-page story in our Nov. 26 issue of the Co-operator, Manitoba processors who had plans in place to

Workers bone and cut beef at a 
meat-packing plant in Toronto.

The key lesson of COVID outbreaks at Manitoba meat processors? Be proactive

One report suggests meat processors were warned to prepare and failed to act

When it comes to COVID-19 at meat-processing facilities one thing has become clear — you can’t wait until you’ve got a problem to act. “With this virus you have to take precautions in advance,” said Jeff Traeger, president of UFCW local 832, which represents workers at Manitoba’s Maple Leaf, HyLife and Exceldor Co-operative meat-processing facilities.

Worker wage protection key for buy-in

In 2007, food processors and associations gathered to discuss the threat of a flu pandemic and their readiness for it. Among challenges they listed were low-income workers who couldn’t afford to take preventive measures. “This will contribute to the spread of disease,” says the report from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. While low-wage, impoverished workers can’t


ICE weekly outlook: Canola stronger at midweek

MarketsFarm — ICE Futures canola contracts were stronger on Wednesday, making up losses incurred earlier in the week. The nearby January contract closed Wednesday at $578.90 per tonne, gaining a few dollars after losing $7 in the prior day’s trade. Keith Ferley of RBC Dominion Securities in Winnipeg said canola’s losses were due to chart

The historic dome building on the Keystone Centre grounds in Brandon.

Pandemic puts time out on RMWF planning

The hits keep coming for Manitoba’s ag fairs

COVID-19 has hit pause on yet another ag fair normally put on by the Provincial Exhibition of Manitoba. The exhibition board has suspended planning for the Royal Manitoba Winter Fair, which typically draws thousands to Brandon’s Keystone Centre for trade shows, horse and cattle exhibits, agricultural education and other entertainment in March, the exhibition announced