GFM Network News


Alberta agriculture minister Devin Dreeshen.

Make food supply chain an essential service, says Alberta’s ag minister

Things are working well and there is no need for hoarding or panic buying, says Devin Dreeshen

Alberta’s food supply chain is stable and is functioning — but it’s essential to keep goods flowing across the U.S. border,  says the province’s agriculture minister. “We have put in an official request to the federal government to deem the entire food supply chain as an essential service to ensure a safe and stable food […] Read more

Canada’s strengths in global trade highlighted at conference

Pandemic has since pushed all other issues out of the spotlight but crops convention highlighted country’s abilities

It was just three weeks ago, but the issues in the spotlight at the Canadian Crops Convention almost seem to be from another age. But the conference was also a reminder that however the coronavirus pandemic changes the landscape, Canada has a lot of people working behind the scenes to ensure trade can take place. […] Read more


“The shortage this past week was from consumers overbuying.” –  David Webb.

No need to ramp up egg production, says official

Some stores are limiting egg sales but the problem is panic buying, not a production shortage

Alberta egg farmers aren’t planning to ramp up production as the recent surge in egg sales is expected to be temporary. “For us, the shortage this past week was from consumers overbuying,” Egg Farmers of Alberta spokesperson David Webb said March 25. In order to thwart panic buying or hoarding, many grocery stores are limiting […] Read more

Lots of flour to go around, millers’ association says

System is 'doing extremely well' and should have no problem keeping up with demand, CNMA's Gordon Harrison says

The grain supply chain is working as it should during the COVID-19 pandemic, says the president of the Canadian National Millers Association. “From the milling industry vantage point, the movement of grain from farm to the producer to the elevator systems to mills is doing extremely well,” Gordon Harrison said Tuesday. “The grain supply chain […] Read more


Some beekeepers may see delays in their honey season this year as seasonal workers arrive later than usual.

Decision on temporary foreign workers a boost for Alberta beekeepers

Beekeepers rely heavily on seasonal agricultural workers and would have had to downsize without them

The federal government’s decision to allow seasonal agricultural workers into the country is good news for Alberta’s beekeepers. The ag sector had feared border closures would keep out these workers and devastate sectors such as fruit and vegetable production. But Canadian beekeepers also rely on temporary foreign workers — about 1,500 are hired each year […] Read more

The Ag-Info Centre, with its familiar toll-free number, has long pitched itself as the go-to resource for farmers and ranchers. But the province now says it
will refer producers “to organizations that are better positioned to answer” their questions.

Staff laid off at the Ag-Info Centre

Livestock and crop specialists have lost their jobs but province says farmers will be able to get the info they need

Eight specialists at the Ag-Info Centre in Stettler have been laid off in the latest round of staff cuts at Alberta Agriculture and Forestry. But the provincial government says farmers won’t be affected. There was no public announcement of the layoffs, but the province did send letters to crop and livestock associations as well as […] Read more


Beef sector mobilizes against supply disruptions

Keeping border open, meeting demand for beef are top priorities

Teams of livestock and government officials are quickly creating plans and policies to keep the sector functioning during the COVID-19 pandemic, says the executive vice-president of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. “Our primary objective obviously is to insure there is stable beef production and trade that can continue under the situation with the COVID-19 pandemic,” Dennis […] Read more

Ahead of any emergency, plan for the worst

Disaster planning is not a pleasant task but it's vital that producers have a plan, expert says

Identify your resources and review your plan, says an expert in emergency planning for livestock. The COVID-19 pandemic is a very different type of emergency, said Rebecca Husted, a teacher of technical large animal emergency rescue. “Most disasters like fires and floods have people moving around, but in COVID-19, people are not supposed to move […] Read more


Take extra steps to keep farm workers safe during COVID-19

Add biosecurity practices, or ramp up the ones you already employ

Farmers concerned about the spread of COVID-19 can learn from the hog sector on the matter of protecting themselves and their workers, says a leading expert on biosecurity in the pork industry. “This is the world of biosecurity that the swine industry deals with on a daily basis,” said Dr. Egan Brockhoff, veterinarian counsellor for […] Read more

Pork supply chain not experiencing disruptions, says hog marketing agency

Entire sector has strong biosecurity protocols, says general manager of the Western Hog Exchange

Prices are soft but the hog supply chain is working well, says the general manager of the Western Hog Exchange. The typical mid-March price rally hasn’t occurred but COVID-19 has roiled all markets, said Brent Bushell. “It’s no different than the stock markets, and everything else. It’s the uncertainty,” said Bushell. “I think people are […] Read more