Latest articles


Canada’s short line equipment makers on the cutting edge

These smaller manufacturers exported $1.8 billion of equipment and implements last year

If you’re frustrated that the big names in equipment manufacturing aren’t rolling out autonomous systems quickly enough, you may want to look a little closer to home. “With the clock ticking on when we’ll see autonomous farming become a commercial reality, my hope is that we’ll see Canadian manufacturers lead the way there,” said Leah […] Read more


VIDEO: You have to seed it to believe it

Ag in Motion 2018: Air seeders put to the test in live field demos

If you attended Ag in Motion last month, hopefully you made your way over to the field demonstration area where there was no shortage of activity. Here, sprayers were compared side-by-side in the Ride & Drive, land-levellers churned out arable land from pasture, and as you’ll see in this video, a variety of air seeders […] Read more



Iron backlog has come and gone

It’s taken a few years, but dealers have finally whittled down high inventories of equipment

Two years ago, you couldn’t drive past an equipment dealership without noticing the rows upon rows of machines — carry-over of anticipated demand that never came. “In 2013 and 2014, everybody was firing on all cylinders,” said Leah Olson, president of the Agricultural Manufacturers of Canada. “With our record harvests, there was a fundamental shift […] Read more


Still just taking pretty pictures? Drones could be making you money

It’s taken a while but more and more producers are discovering ways to boost their profits with drones

Mike Barrett was trying to find a practical use for a pricey toy when he decided to fly his drone over his feedlot to count his cattle. That was when his purchase paid off. “With the average gain of the cattle, we easily paid for the drone in the first year that we counted that […] Read more



Things go better with standard operating procedures

All sorts of companies have so-called SOPs — because they save time and grief, and empower employees

Pilots complete checklists before every flight, even when flying the same plane several times a week. Farm equipment operators, on the other hand, often rely on their memory from 11 months ago when they start up the air drill or other equipment at the beginning of a new season. Some farm owners and managers, however, […] Read more


Fully automated feeding — the rise of the machines

Technology that handles everything from feed formulation to delivering it to cattle is becoming ubiquitous

Ken Van Raay remembers how things used to be at his 30,000-head feedlot. It required a lot more co-ordination, that’s for sure. In his previous system, Van Raay dealt with his local feed mill on the phone; spent more time on the road; managed pelleting, storage, blending and monitoring micro-ingredient levels in bins; and generally […] Read more



Steel tariffs could rebound on farmers here

It’s not clear what impact tariffs will have on farm equipment but any increase will likely be passed on

It’s unclear if the new steel tariff proposed by U.S. President Donald Trump could be bad news for Canadian producers when it comes time to buy new farm equipment. If the tariffs are imposed, U.S. manufacturing companies would pay 25 per cent more for imported steel and 10 per cent more for imported aluminum, unless […] Read more


Robo-tractors invented by farmers are already here

Software-savvy producers aren’t waiting for equipment makers — they’re writing code and automating their machines

Kyler Laird did it the John Deere way when he returned to the family farm in Indiana after his father’s death in 2010. But after five years of sitting in a tractor, planting crooked rows of corn, he decided to do it his way instead. “Even when I was a kid out discing or out […] Read more



Meet DOT: the self-driving power implement

A Saskatchewan-based company has developed an autonomous tractor — minus the tractor

Bigger doesn’t always mean better — but that’s been the story of farm machinery for decades. However, could the era of huge, hulking tractors and the big implements they pull be coming to an end? Norbert Beaujot thinks so, even though the founder of SeedMaster spent most of his career building some of those increasingly […] Read more


Are you ready to step out of the cab forever?

Special Report: Will farming make a u-turn? Those long, long hours seeding can be drudgery but watching fields being sown on a tablet is brand new territory

Autonomous farm equipment would not only radically change how crops are produced, but the lives of farmers themselves. Norbert Beaujot thinks they will embrace being freed from the tractor cab. “At one end of the scale you get the young, 35- to 40-year-old farmer who really wants to get going with anything new and high […] Read more