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

Reading Time: 4 minutes 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

Ergot tolerances set for chickpeas, fababeans

Chickpeas and fababean crops graded in Canada will have a new maximum tolerance for ergot next year, even though the cereal disease doesn’t occur in either crop. The Canadian Grain Commission on Wednesday announced an ergot tolerance of 0.05 per cent for all grades of fababeans and chickpeas in Western Canada effective Aug. 1, 2017, […] Read more


Fababeans are still a niche crop in Alberta, but acreage has grown 
more than tenfold in the last few years.

The enticing — and sometimes scary — world of alternative crops

Crops like fababeans and hemp don’t command huge acres, 
but have been successful alternatives for Alberta producers

Reading Time: 3 minutes Farmers are nothing if not optimistic — optimistic that Mother Nature will be kind; that prices will be good; and that today’s work will pay off a month, six months, or a year down the road. But for all their hopefulness, only some are willing to stray far from tried-and-true crops. “There is always some […] Read more

Fababean acreage muted this year

CNS Canada –– Lower pricing and a softer supply/demand ratio has fababeans trailing some of their more high-profile pulse cousins when it comes to grower intentions across the Canadian Prairies this year. “The marketplace is really being driven by lentils and peas. The indication for many growers is to put their acres into those type […] Read more


Ready to launch: Why pulses are the future of food

Peas, beans, lentils, and chickpeas have been around for centuries, but they are poised to enter the spotlight like never before

Reading Time: 3 minutes Can an old food become new again? Peas, beans, lentils, and chickpeas have been staples for centuries, but pulses are on the verge of becoming the next big thing. Next year, 2016, is the United Nations’ International Year of Pulses (IYoP) and there is a fistful of good reasons why these crops could become the […] Read more

Fababeans in silage? Give it a shot, says pulse researcher

Nutritionally, fababean silage is a good option — but the return on investment is a question mark

Reading Time: 2 minutes No one really seems to know for sure how fababeans will work in silage — but Robyne Bowness has a few educated guesses. “Fababeans should make a fantastic silage crop,” said Bowness, pulse research scientist with Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. “Nutritionally for the animals, fababean is a very good option. It’s high in protein, […] Read more


The big two irrigated crops seeing some competition

Forages and cereals still dominate irrigated 
acreage, but oilseeds and specialty crops 
are growing in popularity

Reading Time: 3 minutes Each year, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development publishes a compilation of all 13 of the province’s irrigation districts’ data for the previous year. The latest figures show cereals and forages (pasture, hay and silage crops) still account for two-thirds of the 1,390,000 acres in the districts, but the trend is clear — forage production isn’t […] Read more

A blend of cover crops — like this mix of proso millet, crimson clover, and tillage radish — will bring a variety of benefits to the soil.

Pick the right tool for the job when creating cover crop blends

Using a diverse blend of cover crops — including cool- and warm-season grasses and broadleaf crops — covers the bases while targeting soil issues

Reading Time: 3 minutes When it comes to choosing the right cover crops for your farm, one size definitely doesn’t fit all. “Growers need to have an objective in mind in terms of what they want to get out of a cover crop,” said Bob Blackshaw, a research scientist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. “You have to choose the […] Read more


Faba bean acreage is soaring — and so is knowledge about growing them

Herbicide sensitivity and heat susceptibility were two issues, and lygus bugs seem to find them tasty

Reading Time: 2 minutes Alberta is coming off of a pretty good year for faba beans and that brought with it some valuable lessons learned, says an Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development researcher. “This year we saw acreage go from 30,000 to close to 80,000,” said Robyne Bowness, pulse research scientist in Lacombe. “We had more farmers growing faba […] Read more

Monsanto rolls out fababean inoculant

Fababean growers in Canada in the market for a granular inoculant now have their first-ever option. Monsanto BioAg, the joint microbial marketing arm for Novozymes and Monsanto, announced Friday it will now launch TagTeam fababean granular inoculant, which picked up Canadian Food Inspection Agency approval last fall. The product’s CFIA registration covers its dual-action use […] Read more