GFM Network News


Cattle buyer Ken Schaus insists that 30 square bales — never any less — be used to bed a trailer so calves have good footing and stay dry.

Attention to the details pays dividends when transporting cattle

It’s a long haul from Alberta to Ontario, but cattle arrive in good shape when things are done right

Reading Time: 5 minutes Producers don’t often think about what happens to their cattle after they leave the farm, and the cheque is in the bank. But with more public focus — and new rules — on how animals are transported, it’s worthwhile to have a better understanding of what happens (or doesn’t) after your cattle are loaded on […] Read more

Kicking tires on shiny new iron is a favourite pastime at Agri-Trade.

Less is proving to be more at Agri-Trade Equipment Expo

The change to a three-day format proved to be a success as the show continues to hit the high notes

Reading Time: 3 minutes It was a major change, but Agri-Trade’s switch to a three-day format proved to be a success. “That was a real positive move,” said Dave Fiddler, manager of the Red Deer ag equipment expo. The move to a three-day format (from four previously) was exhibitor driven, with most wanting to be away from home for […] Read more


A HydraGEN unit reduces carbon emissions from diesel engines while boosting fuel efficiency, says its maker.

The heat is on for innovation award contestants at Agri-Trade

The Red Deer show is using a ‘Dragons’ Den’ approach to pick the winner of its Ag Innovation award

Reading Time: 4 minutes Showcasing agriculture innovations has long been one of Agri-Trade’s priorities. But this year, it’s upping its game — and making the contenders for its Ag Innovation award do the same. Organizers of the Red Deer ag equipment expo will give $20,000 to a company that not only has a creative product or service that benefits […] Read more

Moving cattle is “a piece of cake” once they get used to a rotational grazing system, 
says rancher Morrie Goetjen.

Rancher finds success after realizing he had things backwards

Morrie Goetjen spent years focusing on his cattle, but he now says it’s healthier soil that is the key

Reading Time: 4 minutes What do a policeman and cattle producer have in common? Probably not much, unless you are Morrie Goetjen. The Calgary-area producer has been farming full time since the mid-’80s but since retirement has been able to really focus on his cattle operation. Goetjen has land both northwest of Calgary and northeast of Cremona. The two […] Read more


Feeding low-quality forage can cause all sorts of issues so it pays to have it tested, say experts.

Put your forage to the test – and money in your bank account

High-quality forage will save the cost of supplementing, and avoid costly calf losses

Reading Time: 4 minutes Letting cattle ‘pick and choose’ what they want to eat is no substitute for feed testing. The quality of forage needs to be matched to the animal’s needs — and those nutrition requirements are going to change throughout the year. And that’s why you should test your forages, say experts and groups such as the […] Read more

The test results are back —so what do they mean?

Test results should drive a feeding program, but you need to know what the numbers signify

Reading Time: 2 minutes Interpreting forage test results can sometimes be like trying to read a foreign language. But there’s a new translation tool — the aptly named ‘A Tool for Evaluating Feed Test Results.’ “The tool is designed to take feed test results and compare them to basic nutrition rules of thumb for different classes of cattle,” said […] Read more


Salad greens make for a tasty treat for cattle on Crooked Lake Farm.

Closing the loop: Food waste gets gobbled up on farms

Chickens eat sushi while washing it down with non-alcoholic beer

Reading Time: 3 minutes Sushi, sandwiches, broccoli, yogurt, and non-alcoholic beer. Sounds like things you might eat when in fact, it’s what I feed my chickens. Yes, you read that right. My chickens eat sushi and drink non-alcoholic beer on occasion. It’s all thanks to a program called The Loop and a local grocery store chain, Save-On-Foods. The Loop […] Read more

Having contact with your cattle — whether they’re on pasture or in a feedlot — can pay significant dividends.

Connecting the dots: Less stress = less sickness = fewer treatments for cattle

The time spent on acclimation is easily reclaimed with the benefit of improved herd health, says longtime vet

Reading Time: 3 minutes Low-stress handling has been around for decades, but the practice is becoming more widespread. “There has always been a bit of a trend,” said Dr. Roy Lewis, a well-known Alberta veterinarian who had a large-animal practice for many years. But while the techniques are commonly used in the handling of purebred bulls, on some cow-calf […] Read more


The website www.creatingconnections.info has a host of how-to videos on low-stress handling.

Building a little trust with bovines can produce big dividends

Low-stress handling isn’t new but it’s gaining new attention thanks to a (gentle) push from a major animal health company

Reading Time: 3 minutes Does the thought of working cattle bring to mind shouting, pushing unwilling cattle in directions they don’t want to go, and excessive prodding? It doesn’t have to be that way. The late Bud Williams started training producers and feedlot workers in low-stress handling methods three decades ago and today that work is carried on by […] Read more

Working with a vet allows you to be both proactive about herd health and have an exact plan to deal with common problems, such as foot rot or calf pneumonia, says Ian Murray, pictured with son Ty at his Acme-area ranch.

Livestock producers and vets need to communicate in the new VCPR world

The days when you could just phone a vet and ask for a prescription are now done and dusted

Reading Time: 5 minutes Producers, do you have a Veterinarian-Client-Patient Relationship? As of Dec. 1, all antimicrobials used in animals will require a prescription from a registered veterinarian — and vets can only write a prescription if the four conditions that define a Veterinarian-Client-Patient Relationship (VCPR) are met. Some producers may be wary of this new set of regulations, […] Read more