GFM Network News


Cattle, like these ones in Willow Valley, need more feed during cold weather. Winter feed costs can account for three-quarters of the annual feed bill.

Feed testing is a luxury you can’t afford to miss out on this winter

The first step is to get representative samples — and that can be trickier than it sounds

Just like you can’t always tell if your cattle are healthy by looking at them, you can’t see the quality of your feed at first glance. Luckily, feed testing can help you manage both. “The nutrition program is almost always the culprit when things just aren’t quite right,” said Karin Schmid, research and production manager […] Read more

A thin cow will need an extra 1,400 pounds of hay just to stay warm over the winter.

There are extra challenges in wintering cows this year

Early weaning, supplement feed, and feeding vitamins earlier should be considered

With feed quality and quantity “all over the map this year,” producers face challenges weaning calves and maintaining cows, says a provincial beef and forage specialist. “If calves were not provided with creep feed over the summer, weaning weights will be lower than in most years — as much as 150 pounds per animal,” said […] Read more


The Livingstone Range makes for a picturesque backdrop for these cattle grazing in the Willow Valley. The picture for Alberta’s beef herd isn’t quite as pretty but given drought conditions and a feed shortage earlier in the year, the situation is fairly good for most producers, says Brian Perillat of CanFax.

Not bad feels pretty good for cattle producers this year

It’s far from a banner year but given how things started, 2019 has been better than expected

This year has probably gone better than most cattle producers in Alberta expected. “We started out dry and in a drought, and conditions were a concern early in the year,” said Brian Perillat, manager and senior analyst with CanFax. “But we worked through it and we’ve come full circle. “We’ve got really ample feed supplies […] Read more

Ground-level grazing of long-stemmed forages is the key to equine dental health.

Some feeds can be too easy to digest for horses

The mechanics of nibbling, chomping and crunching are important to horse health

There is a harmonic resonance that is audibly evident when a horse chews. This chewing sound soothes, calms and contents the nervous system of the horse, and most horse owners would agree that it also soothes the nervous system of the human. There are many reasons chewing is an important part of a horse’s life […] Read more



Alberta harvest continues, 11 per cent of crops remain

Alberta Crop Report: Conditions as of November 5

Following a cooler than normal growing season, September brought several wet spells, interspersed by two major dry spells, each lasting less than two weeks. In October, wet spells occurred more frequently, with the northern half of the province blanketed with a few cloudy days. Over the past month, all areas in the province experienced below […] Read more


Alternative feeds could offer big savings this winter, but supplies vary by region and feed testing is a must.

Harvest woes increase supply of alternative feeds

Prices are down and depending on the region, availability is up — but you need to do the math

Hay costs vary significantly this year, with prices in some areas with short supplies nearly double those in areas with adequate supplies. On the other hand, there could be numerous options for alternate winter feeds this year as some crops originally intended for grain are being harvested as feed. Alberta feed barley prices have dropped […] Read more

Poor weather continues to hamper Alberta harvest

Snow, rain and cold winds continued to hamper harvest operations in Alberta during the week ended Oct. 29, according to the latest provincial crop report. Total harvest progress across the province was pegged at 81 per cent done, which was up eight points from the previous week. Southern Alberta was farthest along, at 95 per […] Read more



Weather plays nice to see Alberta harvest pick up pace

Alberta Crop Report: Conditions as of October 22

Significant momentum was made in some areas getting crop in the bin this past week, with the provincial average currently estimated at 74 per cent of all crops combined. This jump is primarily attributed to Central, North East and North West regions where 26, 16 and 13 per cent respectively of Major Crop* acres were […] Read more