GFM Network News


The Rise and Fall of United Grain Growers was not an easy book to write, its author Paul Earl told a crowd attending the book’s launch at McNally Robinson’s
Grant Park store in Winnipeg Nov. 4.

Book chronicles the rise and fall of farmer-owned grain companies

Paul Earl concludes Agricore United didn’t have to be sacrificed on the altar of shareholder primacy

What began in 2004 as a history of United Grain Growers (UGG) founded in 1906, morphed into a chronicling of the birth and death of the West’s farmer-owned, co-operative grain companies and an investigation and challenging of the notion of shareholder primacy, which delivered the final blow to farmer dominance in the grain business and

Politics and a renewed vigour of nationalism are making it increasingly difficult for international trade.

Agricultural trade looms as election issue

Farmers, most of whom rely on exports know it, and so does Ottawa as both face rising protectionism

Continuing trade turmoil is top of mind for Canadian farmers and the federal government heading into the October federal election. The Western Canadian Wheat Growers Association (WCWGA) is demanding the government bulldoze barriers to Canadian agricultural exports. The Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance (CAFTA) has issued recommendations to protect and enhance Canadian agriculture and food exports.


Producer groups say the CGC surplus should be used to lower fees for farmers, but the commission disagrees.

Grain Growers of Canada calls for further cuts

The Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) will not cut its fees to further reduce its surplus ahead of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) review of the commission and the Canada Grain Act, which it administers. Remi Gosselin, manager of the CGC’s corporate information services made the comment last month in response to calls from the Grain

Should falling number and DON be grading factors?

Should falling number and DON be grading factors?

Expensive machines would replace visual assessments of sprout and fusarium damage

Should falling number and deoxynivalenol (DON) be official grain-grading factors? The Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) is asking the grain industry for opinions before May 10. Both factors are included now, but through visual proxies — sprout damage for falling number and fusarium-damaged kernels for DON. They aren’t as accurate as machine measurements, but they are

Hand over wheat field in early summer evening.

Canada’s grain industry welcomes USMCA

The United States is an important market for Canadian grains and oilseeds

Canada’s grain sector has nothing but praise for the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). The trilateral deal reached Sept. 30 not only continues to give Canadian grain access to markets in the United States and Mexico, but it will also modernize areas covered under the former North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), including chapters on biotechnology


The Canadian Grain Commission building in Winnipeg.

Grain Commission fees plan meets mixed reaction

Some say excess fees should be refunded, others say 
they’ll never find their way back to farmers

Western Canada’s grain industry is divided over how the Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) wants to use $90 million in surplus service fees. They were ultimately collected from farmers following fee increases ordered by the Harper government in 2013 to make the CGC self-sufficient. Some groups want the money returned to farmers through reduced CGC fees,

Grain industry has other priorities

Western Canada’s checkoff-funded wheat commissions didn’t have much to say about a proposal to end the maximum revenue entitlement (MRE) and the grain-grading system when asked for comment last week. “Our directors are busy seeding so we haven’t discussed it,” Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers Association general manager Pam de Rocquigny said in an interview

Cigi, Cereals Canada explore merger

Cigi, Cereals Canada explore merger

The two organizations already work closely and have some of the same members and directors

Two Winnipeg grain industry organizations have joined the list of those pondering collaboration and even a possible merger. The Canadian International Grains Institute (Cigi) and Cereals Canada say now may be the time to band together. Cigi was created in 1972 to promote Canadian grain and field crops to domestic and international processors. Besides overseas


Farm groups chided MPs over rail service at a recent hearing of the Commons agriculture committee.

Western farmers want rail headaches fixed for the future

Presentations to Commons agriculture committee all noted the need for a long-lasting fix to this problem

It’s too close to spring and planting time for a special order to the railways to move more grain to achieve much, Prairie farmers have told the Commons agriculture committee. Rural roads will soon be impassable for grain trucks and farmers will be focused on planting this year’s crop rather than hauling grain to terminals,

Portrait of female farmer

Agriculture an also-ran in federal budget

There were few tangible investments made to meet the government’s own targets to grow food exports

After enjoying headline status last year, the agri-food sector found itself once again on the back burner in the 2018 federal budget. There was none of the bold talk of 2017, when the agri-food export target of $75 billion by 2025 was set. Read more: New rules on passive investment arrive in budget Ron Bonnett, president