GFM Network News


Growing demand for plant-based proteins could drive up fababean acres, said provincial pulse unit head Mark Olson.

Fababeans get a reality check

Fabas were on a tear until this year, but experts expect the crop 
to have a solid, but modest, future in Alberta

With the sharp drop in Alberta fababean acres in 2016, has the clock struck midnight for last year’s Cinderella crop? Maybe, maybe not, says a provincial pulse expert. “I just can’t see them going away,” said Mark Olson, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry’s pulse crops unit head. “I don’t think the acres are going to go […] Read more

Some Prairie pulses’ limited releases under review

Saskatchewan Pulse Growers wants your opinion on how they release pulse varieties through exclusive tenders. The grower group contributes levy funds to the University of Saskatchewan’s Crop Development Centre pulse breeding program. In return, Sask Pulse holds exclusive commercial rights to varieties developed in the program. Most new varieties are released royalty-free to seed growers […] Read more


Dryness stalls Sask., Alta. fababeans

CNS Canada — Fababeans are increasing in popularity across the Prairies, but much like other crops in Alberta and Saskatchewan, dry weather is taking its toll — and if it continues, yield could be impacted. Fababeans require a lot of moisture to produce well, according to Dale Risula, a Saskatchewan provincial specialist for special crops […] Read more

PulsePOD offers growers detailed and continuously updated information on either their computers or smartphones.

New pulse website takes a (web) page from Wikipedia

Alberta Pulse Growers has launched a new online manual in a familiar Wikipedia-style 
format to share up-to-date research and agronomic best practices

Wikipedia has replaced encyclopedias as the go-to tool for people conducting a little research — and that’s just what Alberta Pulse Growers is banking on with the launch of its pulse crop wiki. “The PulsePOD — or the pulse crop wiki, as we sometimes call it — is designed to take the place of a […] Read more


Decisions, decisions — what will you plant this spring?

It’s only a small sample, but rotation looms large for these four farmers — 
although there’s an opening for something that’s the right fit


Ag Canada is forecasting a jump in canola, barley and wheat acres this year — but rotations and sticking with the tried and true seem to be top of mind for many Alberta producers. But specialty crops are getting a look as grain and oilseed producers look for options that could beef up the bottom […] Read more

No hill of beans: fababean acreage soars, soybeans may be next

Faba bean acreage has increased tenfold in two years and could 
double again next year, with soybeans following suit

Every farmer knows a four-year crop rotation is best for good crops, healthy fields and managing pests. However, the four-year ideal often clashes with production reality: canola has been the big money-maker, and while legumes are good for nitrogen fixing, they usually pay less and can present big challenges with disease, standability and harvestability compared […] Read more


They key is to seed early so that beans mature before the lygus bugs can cause damage.

Watch for lygus bug damage on fababeans

The insects leave a black spot which is discounted by export customers

Central Alberta farmers planning to sell low-tannin faba beans for export will need to beware of lower tolerance levels for lygus bug damage. Snowbird is a low-tannin variety of faba beans commonly sold into the human market overseas. Parkland Alberta Commodities, a grain buyer based in Innisfail, Alberta, set the tolerance level for lygus bug-damaged […] Read more

It was a faba-ulous year for growing broad beans

Acreage of the pulse crop doubled or tripled this year, with good prices 
and yields making it a big money maker

Mark Olson has finally found the perfect standing field pea. “It’s called faba bean,” said Olson, pulse crops unit head at Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. “People have struggled with the harvestability of field pea for a number of years, especially in those areas where there’s a lot of moisture. Faba bean is a crop […] Read more