GFM Network News


Scenes like this one from last year’s Prairie Cereals Summit used to be normal but with in-person meetings cancelled because of the pandemic, discussions on merging Alberta Wheat and Alberta Barley have been drawn out.

Cereal groups’ amalgamation talks slowed by pandemic

Alberta Barley and Alberta Wheat aiming to wrap up review of merger proposal in coming year

There’s no marriage proposal yet, but Alberta Barley and Alberta Wheat want to get moving on what has become a longer-than-expected process on whether to amalgamate or not. “We’re just in the beginning stage of where it will go, and the timeline and how to communicate,” Dave Bishop, immediate past chair of the Alberta Barley […] Read more

Prairie Cereals Summit cancelled

The rise in COVID cases has forced Alberta Wheat and Alberta Barley to cancel its Prairie Cereals Summit in Banff in December, although Alberta Barley’s AGM will be held online on Dec. 9. The barley group is encouraging farmers to register to participate in the online AGM and delegate and director session that will feature […] Read more


Crop commissions now in charge of Blue Book

The province’s big four crop commissions are taking over publication of the Blue Book. The popular annual update of information on herbicides, insecticides, fungicides and seed treatments has been published by the provincial Agriculture Ministry for more than two decades. But the province’s wheat, barley, canola and pulse commissions are now taking over the publication […] Read more

Online voting is just one of the changes Alberta’s crop commissions have made to their yearly regional meetings and annual general meetings.

We’ll meet again — but not likely in person for a while

This year’s round of meetings will be mostly virtual but commissions hope producers stay involved

The fall meeting season hasn’t fallen by the wayside, but it will be very different. “We haven’t done any in-person events since the pandemic started, and we will not be doing any in-person events until at least February or March 2021,” said Rick Taillieu, manager of grower relations and extension for Alberta Canola. “Along the […] Read more



Farm groups ‘disappointed’ by research cuts

Alberta Wheat and Alberta Barley say they are “disappointed at the level of research that will be conducted this year” by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. The two farm groups say Ag Canada management has suggested field trials will only be about 30 per cent of capacity this year because of constraints created by the pandemic, […] Read more


Crop webinars being held Wednesdays

With summer field days cancelled for now, Alberta Wheat and Alberta Barley are hosting webinars every Wednesday at 11 a.m. Each In The Field webinars will feature a guest presenter and Q-and-A session. The upcoming schedule is: U of Alberta Professor Boyd Mori on insects (May 20); retired provincial agronomist Ross McKenzie on in-crop nitrogen […] Read more

Wheat and barley groups eye merger

Committee to investigate pros and cons, with full membership of both groups to vote on the merger bid

After first amalgamating their administrative teams and then their senior management, Alberta Wheat and Alberta Barley are now considering a full merger. But the notion of scrapping their individual boards and creating a single cereal crop board is still in its early stages, say the chairs of the two farm groups. “The resolution came up […] Read more


‘Perfect storm’ hits grain movement

The blockade of CN rail lines by Indigenous-rights protesters has contributed to “a perfect storm” affecting grain movement this winter, say Alberta Wheat and Alberta Barley. “An eight-day CN rail strike in late November, followed by a 10-day cold spell in January and heavy rains impacting rail movement and the loading of grain vessels at […] Read more

Alberta crop commissions announce new board director lineups

Some well-known faces completing their final terms, including Jason Lenz and Gary Stanford

The provincial barley, wheat, and canola commissions have announced new directors. Tara Sawyer from Acme was acclaimed to the board of Alberta Barley as director-at-large replacing Brian Sewell from High River. Neil Gorda from Willingdon was also acclaimed as a director for Region 4. An election was to be held for the Region 3 director, […] Read more