GFM Network News


Farming the web up and running

A virtual marketplace for farmers to buy and sell ag products and services online is now open for business. Farming the Web, which is free to use, has six categories: Hay, straw and other feeds; salt and minerals; livestock and working animals; land for rent or lease; farm equipment; services and contracting; and other. The […] Read more

Sharing your forage production practices could win you a $250 gift card.

Survey on forage production

The Alberta Forage Industry Network is asking producers to help it get a better understanding of forage production in the province. In addition to asking about your general location, type of farm, and forage acreage, the questionnaire asks about forage varieties, their uses, and any plans for expanding or decreasing acreage. The anonymous questionnaire takes […] Read more


Grazing makes for healthier grasslands, which means more carbon capture and plant biodiversity.

Grazing grasslands is good for the environment, study finds

A research team conducted a study on 114 sites throughout Alberta and 
found that long-term grazing can have a positive impact on grasslands

Cattle are often demonized as environmental polluters, but grazing them can have a positive impact on grasslands. “Grasslands store a lot of carbon and we should be proactively thinking about the value of that carbon, not to mention all the environmental goods and services they provide,” said Edward Bork, professor of rangeland ecology at the […] Read more

Supplies of meadow brome as well as smooth 
brome are both tight this year.

Forage growers, get your seed lined up soon

Alberta forage growers can expect limited seed supplies and high prices 
for almost all forage types this upcoming spring

Bad news for forage growers: Seed is in short supply and prices are “through the roof” heading into spring. “The prices reflect the supply,” said Heather Kerschbaumer of Golden Acre Seeds in Fairview. “We’re advising anybody who’s planning on doing any reseeding to go to your seed supplier and get your orders in early.” Forage […] Read more


Alfalfa seed: a growing industry

It’s a good time to be an alfalfa seed grower, says the president of the Alfalfa Seed Commission. “It’s been a fantastic industry to be in the last few years, with tremendous growth,” said Darren Nikkel, an Enchant-area seed grower who spoke at the Alberta Forage Industry Network AGM in mid-March. After hitting a low […] Read more

A few simple practices can greatly improve pasture productivity, 
says Graeme Finn.

Expert says plan your pastures and save yourself some headaches

Heavy seeding and a weed control strategy geared to specific pasture conditions are key for grazing consultant and rancher Graeme Finn

You can’t just let your cows loose on a piece of grass without proper planning and knowledge. “When I take over land, I assess it and see where we need to go,” grazing consultant Graeme Finn said at the recent Western Canada Grazing Conference. “If we have weed issues, then we control them with chemicals […] Read more


Albert Kuipers, manager of the Grey Wooded Forage Association, teaches fence-building techniques in the pilot of the new ‘Fast Farmer’ video series.

‘Fast Farmer’ videos offer practical how-to advice

Beginning farmers can now learn to build an electric fence — without ever leaving the house. Farm On Foundation has created the first instalment in a series called “The Fast Farmer.” The series will use podcasts, videos, photos, instructional sheets, case studies, and other material to provide practical information in an easy-to-use format geared to […] Read more

Slim pickings for forage seed this growing season

Anyone thinking about growing forages this year better act sooner than later. Strong cattle values coupled with low grain and oilseed prices is shifting marginal acres back to forages, Kevin Shaw, sales and marketing representative at Pickseed, said at the recent Alberta Forage Industry Network annual general meeting. And there’s not an excess of forage seed around given that yields […] Read more


High hopes for new forage beef centre, but ‘fickle governments’ a worry

Boosting pasture productivity and lowering winter feed costs put 
money in the pocketbook, but forage research still a hard sell

A deal to finally make the proposed Alberta Forage Beef Centre in Lacombe a reality can’t come soon enough for its backers, who have been pushing government for a funding commitment since 2011. “We’re in the process of getting everyone together in the same room to negotiate the terms of an agreement,” Karen Schmid, beef […] Read more