GFM Network News

wheat in a farmer's hand

Thinking of forward wheat pricing?

Farmers need to make sure the margin will cover their cost of production

Reading Time: < 1 minute Wheat prices have weakened since winter, world supply levels are bearish, and the loonie is up. “Many farmers are wondering, ‘What do I do now?’” said Neil Blue, market specialist at Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. Farmers thinking about signing a forward pricing contract should first consider if the price will provide an acceptable margin […] Read more

potato leaf with blight

Potato and tomato growers warned to keep watch for late blight

Monitor for symptoms in tomato transplants and in early-emerging potato plants

Reading Time: < 1 minute There has been a great deal of concern in Alberta in the last few years about late blight, a serious disease that mainly affects potatoes and tomatoes. Favourable conditions for disease development have resulted in multiple outbreaks of late blight in commercial market gardens, as well as urban potato and tomato crops throughout parts of […] Read more

rows of trees at a nursery

Tree planting dos and don’ts

Agroforestry specialist Toso Bozic outlines the basics from buying to planting

Reading Time: 2 minutes A tree needs a healthy head start and that begins with selecting the right seedlings. “Ask where the stock came from, as many trees are not adapted to Alberta’s harsher climate,” said provincial agroforestry specialist Toso Bozic. “If you don’t get a tree that suits your needs, wait for next season and order in advance.” […] Read more

working with farm chemicals

Going ‘off label’ is a bad idea all around when it comes to pesticides

You can not only be fined, but also put your customers, the environment and your business at risk

Reading Time: 2 minutes The practice of ‘off-label’ spraying is not only illegal and can result in severe fines, but can also be very dangerous for your clients, your livelihood, and the environment, says a provincial commercial horticulture specialist. “Horticultural chemicals and pesticides often have the dubious distinction of being more expensive than their field crop cousins. In order […] Read more

young farmer by truck filling with grain

Summer Farm Employment Program deadline looming

Applications processed on a first-come, first-served basis until May 31

Reading Time: < 1 minute Time is running out to get funding from the Summer Farm Employment Program. The provincial program offers wage support for farmers who employ youth during July and August. Employers must own or rent a farming operation in Alberta and have a gross production of $25,000 per year. Work must be directly related to the farming […] Read more

man resting his arm on a shovel

Fatigue during spring seeding is dangerous, work safe

Know the warning signs and 
set sensible limits

Reading Time: < 1 minute Seeding and the spring work frenzy puts you at greater risk of serious injury due to fatigue. “Too many farmers push themselves, especially during the really busy times,” said Kenda Lubeck, farm safety co-ordinator with Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. “Too often, it is a case of wanting to finish a field even though fatigue […] Read more

people shopping at a farmers' market

Operators upping their game as farmers’ markets proliferate

Some are finding ways to stand out in the crowd while others are getting to know their customers better

Reading Time: 2 minutes Thrive!” was the theme for the 2015 B.C. Association of Farmers’ Markets annual conference which attracted more than 100 vendors, farmers, managers and board members to talk about growth, innovation, and building ongoing success in the markets. The conference focused on two areas — strengthening the operation of the market and increasing vendor know-how in […] Read more

cattle herd on a pasture

Cow-calf sector needs a different approach when it comes to investing

Pay attention to working capital, and invest in productive assets, herd health and yourself, says expert

Reading Time: 2 minutes Now that the cow-calf business is providing positive margins, an Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development specialist has some suggestions where cow-calf operators can invest to help improve their bottom line. In the Managing Prosperity in the Beef Industry presentation now available from Cow-Calfenomics risk management series, farm financial specialist Rick Dehod suggests that improving working […] Read more

farm field and a blue sky

Scorecard lets you put your pastures to the test

The scorecard is a simple way to see if a pasture needs to be rejuvenated

Reading Time: 2 minutes Highly productive pastures are the biggest key to high profitability of most beef, and other grazing ruminant operations. The Alberta Tame Pasture Scorecard is a quick and easy way of doing a pasture assessment. “Determining if pastures are functioning at the desired potential can be determined quite easily,” said Grant Lastiwka, a provincial forage and […] Read more