GFM Network News


Kyle Geeraert and wife Meleah found a receptive audience when they proposed creating a malting and brewing company.

Being open to new ideas creates opportunity

Farm family isn’t fearful of doing something different if someone is passionate about it

When Kyle Geeraert was getting his start in agriculture one of his stops was managing a grain company, where he and wife Meleah were exposed to some new malting equipment they thought had promise. Meleah happened to have some connections in the industry. She is the daughter of Spencer and Lynne Hilton and malting barley […] Read more

Hop growers Brent and Kari Tarasoff and brew master Marc Shields have seen incredible growth in their microbrewery over the past year — but the brewing business is not for the faint of heart.

Ponoka microbrewery eyes world domination

Kari and Brent Tarasoff had no intention of opening a brewery when they began growing hops in Penticton, B.C. four years ago. But their five-year plan got thrown out the window last year when they opened Siding 14 Brewing Company in Ponoka with two partners. And pretty soon, they’ll need to toss out their new […] Read more


Sleeman investing to bring back production from U.S.

Canada’s third-biggest national brewer plans upgrades at its southwestern Ontario plant, with which it plans to bring back some production it now contracts out to a U.S. brewery. Guelph-based Sleeman Breweries, owned since 2006 by Japanese brewer Sapporo, announced Monday it will invest $6.61 million to expand packaging capability, put up new beer tanks and […] Read more

Having a more direct connection with end-users is “more exciting” 
than just selling a commodity product, says Penhold-area producer 
Wade McAllister.

This malt’s for you — growers profit from ‘drink local’ movement

Alberta barley growers earn premiums — and satisfaction — by direct contracting with brewers

Wade McAllister didn’t expect to be a direct marketer when he returned to his family’s grain farm in 2010. But with the demise of the Canadian Wheat Board in 2012, McAllister found a whole new market open to him — direct contracts with breweries for his malt barley. “Ever since the wheat board was dropped, […] Read more


Barley growers need to think a little differently to cater to the growing craft brewing industry, said Red Shed Malting’s Matt Hamill.

Craft beer boom drives demand for new malt barley varieties

It’s all about consistency and efficiency for the big brewers, but the 
small guys want unique taste and also use more malt per batch

New malt barley varieties will soon hit the market to meet the growing demands of a burgeoning craft brewing industry. “The brewing and malting industry is changing,” said Pat Juskiw, a barley breeder with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry. “In the past, our industry has been composed of big companies — the Molsons, the Labatts, the […] Read more