Latest articles


Trans-Pacific agreement draws praise from ag groups

Farm and agri-food groups say deal will open new markets but CFA issues warning on supply management

Here’s what farm and agri-food groups were saying after an agreement was struck on a new Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal (also called TPP-11 or CPTPP): Cereals Canada The TPP-11 agreement raises the bar with respect to modern and progressive trading rules in Asia-Pacific and beyond. Canada’s participation demonstrates much needed […] Read more


Duane Landals named 2017 Carl Block Award recipient

An Alberta veterinarian has been named the recipient of a national award for outstanding contributions to animal health. Dr. Duane Landals of Onoway has been given the 2017 Carl Block Award by the Canadian Animal Health Coalition. For more than 37 years Landals has “contributed significantly” to veterinary medicine, both in Canada and internationally. He […] Read more



The federal government’s supercluster game plan

The federal government hopes its ‘supercluster’ plan will result in “bold and ambitious proposals that will supercharge regional innovation ecosystems.” There are a couple of key elements to the plan. One is that by having big companies team up with numerous smaller ones, the initiatives will provide a sector-wide boost rather than just serving the […] Read more


Malting barley production down, quality up

Western Canada’s barley acres continue to fall, but malting barley quality was excellent

There was less malt barley produced this year but what did come off looked good, according to the Canadian Grain Commission. The organization’s 2017 Quality of Western Canadian Malting Barley report noted lower production, less acres, and a yield decrease, but high kernel weights and plumpness across the Prairies. Alberta and northeastern B.C. (the two […] Read more



More temporary foreign workers needed, says CCA

The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association wants the federal government to make changes to the temporary foreign worker program to address the shortage of labour. “Cattle producers and beef processors are struggling to find enough workers, and straining to deal with the impacts of job vacancies on production,” the association said in a recent newsletter. It cites […] Read more


What does the Sustainable Beef Framework involve?

Even the overview of protocols set out in the Certified Sustainable Beef Framework runs nearly 60 pages. But here are a few of the ‘indicators’ for cattle producers from the five areas that the framework covers: Natural Resources One of the goals is to maintain or enhance water quality. To score 1 (a.k.a. Achievement level), […] Read more



Veterinary association lambastes province over ‘intrusion’ on fees

The organization is upset with consumer protection bill that would allow vets to advertise their fees

For the second time in two months, the association representing Alberta’s veterinarians is crying foul and accusing the NDP government of taking short-sighted actions with no consultation. Proposed changes “constitute alarming overreach and intrusion into the veterinary profession’s ability to self-regulate and were made without consultation,” the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association said in a press […] Read more


First the cows, then the grass, and then the soil

Winner of top environmental award for cattle producers says stewardship is a journey that never ends

‘Sustainable’ isn’t a word that finds a lot of favour with this year’s winner of one of the provincial farm sector’s leading environmental awards. “I prefer to use the word regenerative,” Ian Murray says in a video portraying the work he and wife Carman have done at Shoestring Ranch. “I don’t want our ranch to […] Read more



Demand is there, but jumping into hops isn’t easy

If you’re wondering if hops might be something you’d like to try, Ontario’s Ag Ministry’s website has a powerpoint primer called Local Hops: A brewing industry. Even though the presentation is barely a year old, Alberta doesn’t even make the list of hops-growing provinces. The owners of Northern Girls Hops west of Edmonton actually started […] Read more


Christmas Bird Count set to begin

Annual citizen science project runs from Dec. 14 to Jan. 5

It is not uncommon for rough-legged hawks to stay north during the winter months, while most hawks migrate south. This fellow in the photo above may just end up being part of the annual Christmas Bird Count. Started in 1900, the count is North America’s longest-running citizen science project with volunteers collecting data in more […] Read more