GFM Network News


New centre to help farmers access latest research

Lethbridge College says it will set up a new centre to help farmers and food processors tap into the latest research and the expertise of its staff after receiving a $1.75-million grant. The Integrated Agriculture Technology Centre is one of six new technology access centres being funded by grants from the Natural Sciences and Engineering […] Read more

Watercraft owners are required to stop at inspection stations so their boats, kayaks or other watercraft can be inspected for invasive species.

Don’t forget threat of invasive aquatic species

Albertans eager to get back onto lakes and irrigation reservoirs shouldn’t forget about the threat of invasive aquatic species, says the association representing the province’s 13 irrigation districts. “All watercraft owners have a part to play in preventing aquatic invasive species from being introduced into Alberta waterbodies,” the Alberta Irrigation Districts Association said in a […] Read more


New pilot program for agri-food labour welcomed

Meat processors, greenhouse and mushroom growers, livestock producers get first crack at program

Ottawa — Federal officials hope a new pilot program will help stabilize ongoing labour issues in certain sectors of the agri-food value chain, while also providing citizenship to some foreign workers. Critics, however, contend more support is needed. “This pilot will help to ensure that farmers and processors have the much-needed skills, experience and labour […] Read more

New dean of agriculture named for U of S

Soil science prof Angela Bedard-Haughn takes over Aug. 15

One of Western Canada’s major post-secondary ag institutions will get a new hand at the wheel this summer. The University of Saskatchewan announced Wednesday it has named soil science professor Angela Bedard-Haughn as the dean for its College of Agriculture and Bioresources for a five-year term starting Aug. 15. Raised on a family farm in […] Read more


Solar panels lose a little bit of efficiency each year but the irrigation district’s arrays come with a guarantee of 80 per cent output in 25 years’ time.

Inspired by farmers, irrigation district aims for ‘net zero’

St. Mary River Irrigation District moves a lot of water and has a big electric bill — but that’s about to change

The St. Mary River Irrigation District is putting the sun to work providing water to its users. Solar arrays at two large pump stations have the district in a position to achieve net zero electrical use — and potentially save hundreds of thousands in electricity costs down the road. The inspiration to look at solar came […] Read more

Research lead Willemijn Appels and Nathan Linder gather data from a local farmer’s canola field irrigated by subsurface drip irrigation.

Fighting gravity for better underground irrigation

Subsurface drip irrigation can pay off with the right practices and a little patience, says researcher

At first glance, subsurface drip irrigation seems like an obvious winner as it gets water directly to the roots and there’s less evaporation. But that’s not the whole story. Subsurface drip irrigation is a literal fight against gravity — you’re trying to make water go from side to side when it’s inclined to go down […] Read more


Better establishment and uniform staging helped this canola seeded by a precision planter on 12-inch rows (on an irrigated plot) achieve a much higher yield than its air-seeded cousin in a Farming Smarter small-plot study.

Precision planting produces results — but doesn’t come cheap

Small-plot study finds 15 per cent yield bump, but cost and fertilization are issues with precision planter

New research shows that tightening up row spacing when seeding canola with precision planters can make a big yield difference — up to 15 per cent more, in fact — compared to conventional air drills. That’s a key finding from a four-year small-plot study by Farming Smarter researchers after adjusting a precision vacuum planter to […] Read more

Saskatchewan crop insurance deadline pushed to mid-April

Governments offer farmers 'flexibility'

The month-end deadline for Saskatchewan farmers to finalize contracts with the provincial Crown crop insurance agency for 2020 has been moved to April 13. Provincial Agriculture Minister David Marit and federal Ag Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau on Monday announced the extension on farmers’ deadline to “apply, reinstate, cancel or make changes” to crop insurance contracts. “We […] Read more



Average Prairie heat, more rain in summer forecast

MarketsFarm — Canada’s Prairies should see higher-than-normal precipitation and generally average temperatures during the 2020 growing season, according to a forecast from Scott Kehler of Weatherlogics. Speaking Thursday at CropConnect in Winnipeg, Kehler said “there’s not really a strong pattern one way or the other” when it comes to the temperature outlook. The Weatherlogics forecast […] Read more