GFM Network News


The latest change to AgriStability is a significant improvement but producers still need a proper business risk management program, says Canadian Cattlemen’s Association president Bob Lowe, who ranches and has a feedlot near Nanton.

It’s a start but farm groups and governments eye bigger changes to AgriStability

Changes to the federal farm support program get generally favourable reviews, but calls for a better program aren’t going away

Reading Time: 5 minutes Better, but not great. And let’s come up with something that really works. Those two sentiments characterized most of the comments about the recently agreed-to change to AgriStability. And most producers would add ‘still really complicated’ as the decision by Ottawa and the provinces to scrap the ‘reference margin limit’ will impact individual farms in […] Read more

Federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau speaks to media in Winnipeg on Feb. 13, 2020. (Dave Bedard photo)

Yes or no now on AgriStability changes, ag minister says

Farm and commodity groups line up to press provinces for decision

Ottawa’s proposals for changes to the AgriStability farm income stabilization program require a yes or no answer from participating provinces, not more discussion, the federal ag minister said Wednesday. “It has been just over 110 days since we made the offer to the provinces to improve AgriStability,” Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau and Winnipeg MP Jim […] Read more


(Bob_bosewell/iStock/Getty Images)

Budget could include new BRM program, ag labour plan

Proposal for 'AgriResilience' program goes to Freeland

A new pre-budget report from the House of Commons’ finance committee is recommending several measures directly related to agriculture — including sought-after tweaks to AgriStability and creation of an entirely new business risk management program. The multipartisan committee heard testimony and received submissions from more than 800 groups and individuals. Mostly-virtual meetings took place in […] Read more

(Glacier FarmMedia Network photo)

Provinces’ feet held to fire on AgriStability

Ministers' meeting co-chairs push for progress to allow changes to be made retroactive for 2020

The co-chairs of Canada’s agriculture ministers’ meeting are pushing to get proposed improvements to AgriStability in place sooner than later. Federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau and her Ontario counterpart, Ernie Hardeman, “urge all provincial and territorial ministers to support the proposed changes to the AgriStability program,” they said in a joint statement Tuesday. At a […] Read more


Manitoba Agriculture Minister Blaine Pedersen speaks at Ag Days in Brandon on Jan. 21, 2020. (Manitoba Co-operator file photo by Alexis Stockford)

AgriStability proposal could have hidden cost, Pedersen warns

Manitoba's ag minister warns Bibeau's plan may hurt crop insurance, AgriInvest funding

Ottawa’s proposal for an improved AgriStability program could give farmers short-term gain for long-term pain, Manitoba’s agriculture minister Blaine Pedersen warns. At the online federal-provincial-territorial agriculture ministers’ meeting on Friday, federal Agriculture Minister Marie Claude Bibeau proposed dropping AgriStability’s maximum reference margin, and increasing the compensation rate from 70 to 80 per cent retroactively this […] Read more

(Glacier FarmMedia Network photo)

No BRM breakthrough reached at ministers’ meeting

AgMins fail to find solution to business risk management program woes

No consensus on changes to business risk managements (BRM) programming was reached during the latest round of federal-provincial-territorial agriculture ministers’ meetings. After the meetings ended Friday, federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau explained Ottawa was willing to maintain the current cost sharing of the programs at a 60-40 split between her government and the provinces. Bibeau’s […] Read more


(Photo courtesy Canada Beef Inc.)

AgriStability in Bibeau’s sights as ministers’ meeting booked

Removing reference margin limit a palatable option

Federal, provincial and territorial (FPT) ministers of agriculture are scheduled to meet Nov. 20 and 27 to discuss improving business risk management (BRM) programs. Federal Agriculture Minister Marie Claude Bibeau said she is confident counterparts from Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia will be willing to contribute their share to make significant improvements to AgriStability, the […] Read more

File photo of Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau speaking in Winnipeg in February 2020. (Dave Bedard photo)

Bibeau not considering closing AgriInvest accounts

Minister wouldn't order farmers to pull funds

Federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau is not considering ordering producers to withdraw from their AgriInvest accounts. “Not in this way. All the options are on the table for the future, but I’ve never considered asking them to withdraw, to empty their accounts, to face COVID-19,” she said in an interview Friday. Bibeau had previously expressed […] Read more


(Photo courtesy Canada Beef Inc.)

No timeline yet set for BRM reforms

Changes put on hold along with ministers' meeting

Ottawa — Federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau has confirmed any reforms to business risk management (BRM) programs are being delayed. That confirmation came during a wide-ranging media availability Bibeau held Tuesday. In March, Tom Rosser, an assistant deputy minister at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), said the government is looking at a number of options […] Read more

Beef cattle feeding in Ontario. (DebraLee Wiseberg/iStock/Getty Images)

COVID-19 strains already-battered Ontario beef industry

Limited processing capacity remains financial challenge for province's feedlot sector, despite recent increase in retail demand

Ontario’s beef industry was already in the midst of an economic crisis, but COVID-19 is worsening the financial toll on the province’s cattle feeders. Due to extremely limited processing plant capacity, an uncompetitive market and disruptions to trade and market access, Ontario’s beef industry was losing an average of more than $2 million per week […] Read more