Latest articles


Putting seed to the test — it’s not just about germination

A vigour test tells you more, especially in a year like this one that follows a tough harvest

The seed you plant is ground zero for any healthy, profitable crop. So it only makes sense to know as much about it as possible before putting it in the ground. However, a lot of producers are still doing the bare minimum of seed testing, and experts say it’s causing them to miss out. Although […] Read more


Quick payoff from trade deal for beef producers

Beef exports to Japan triple in the first month after Trans-Pacific agreement

That didn’t take long. Hot on the heels of a new trade partnership, sales of Canadian beef to Japan skyrocketed in January, tripling the amount sold to the country compared to a month earlier. Japanese buyers snapped up 3,545 tonnes of Canadian beef in January — versus 1,282 tonnes in December and about 58 per […] Read more



Co-op goes big — and fast — with new fertilizer terminal

The new $42-million facility at Grassy Lake will have a loop track and lightning-quick loading

The tiny hamlet of Grassy Lake will soon be home to a very large fertilizer terminal. The $41.8-million Federated Co-operatives facility will not only be big — with a storage capacity of more than 34,000 tonnes — but also fast. It will have a loop track that will be able to continuously unload a 110-car […] Read more


Big equipment and rural roads aren’t a great match

You can’t shrink your equipment but you can reduce the risk of a collision

When it comes to transporting agricultural equipment, bigger almost never means better. After all, equipment is getting larger but roads are staying the same size. There are also fewer drivers on the road who know how to respect and respond to these large, slow-moving vehicles. It’s a potentially fatal cocktail and farmers are getting worried. […] Read more



Woman Pouring Glass Of Water From Tap In Kitchen

Spring is the time for testing your farm’s water supply

Testing for every possible contaminant is expensive — here’s what should be at the top of the checklist

It’s up to rural landowners to keep their water safe — and spring is the ideal time to get that job done, says a water quality expert. “Winter can accumulate pollutants, then spring thaw and run-off carries the previous six months’ worth of pollutants down to groundwater and sideways towards surface supplies,” said Mitch Golay, […] Read more


Safety is getting its turn in the spotlight

With new workplace regs in effect, there’s a lineup of producers wanting to make their farms safer

After a bit of a slow start, farmers are increasingly turning to AgSafe Alberta for help in reducing the risk of an accident on their operation. “It’s actually really busy — it’s gone from being very quiet to a wave,” said Jody Wacowich, the executive director of the non-profit society created by farm groups in […] Read more



Canadian farms are getting safer — but not fast enough

Safer machinery is saving lives, but farms remain dangerous places to work, says expert

Farms across Canada are becoming safer, but danger still abounds. “We are seeing fewer entanglement injuries and fewer deaths from rollovers — that’s where the big gains are on the technology and engineering side,” said Don Voaklander, director of the University of Alberta’s Injury Prevention Centre. “The other stuff is kind of the same. Falls […] Read more


Where are the Canadian genome-editing startups?

Looser regulations give the U.S. an edge in GE product development, but Canadians are working on gene editing, too

Genome editing has made some major strides in the past year. Minnesota-based Calyxt struck a deal with a processor to make oil from its GE soybeans, in which the genes responsible for trans fats have been ‘turned off.’ And SU Canola (a sulfonyurea herbicide-resistant variety) was given its Canadian commercial release a year ago by […] Read more



Canadian plant approval process lengthy but worthwhile

In Canada, plant varieties with traits that are new to the environment and have the potential to impact human and environmental health are called “novel traits” and are regulated by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. They must be approved by the CFIA as well as Health Canada (in the case of food products) prior to […] Read more


Outstanding Young Farmer got an early start

Giving young people a chance to learn and grow has become a tradition on Double F Farms

Passing the torch to the next generation is often the greatest challenge faced by farm families. But the way the Ference family met that challenge is a big reason why Craig and Jinel Ference were recently named co-winners of Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmer award. “It was such an interesting group because we’re all in different […] Read more