GFM Network News


Report links business management, mental health of farmers

Farm women, young farmers report higher levels of stress, difficulties coping

Ottawa — A new report from Farm Management Canada (FMC) calls for action after determining 75 per cent of Canadian farmers reported being moderately to highly stressed about unpredictable interference, workload pressure and financial pressures. But how a farmer plans his or her business — and associated risks — can help lower that statistic. The […] Read more

Cervus to expand Saskatchewan reach

Deere chain announces Nipawin shop, Farm At Hand tie-in

Deere farm equipment dealer chain Cervus Equipment is set to expand its reach in northeastern Saskatchewan next month. Calgary-based Cervus — which operates 21 Deere dealerships in Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia along with 42 other machinery dealerships in Canada, Australia and New Zealand — announced Thursday it plans to have a new dealership open […] Read more


AGI buys ag business management software muscle

Grain handling equipment maker Ag Growth Industries (AGI) plans to level up on its SureTrack farm management software platform with a deal for another Canadian player in the same business. Winnipeg-based AGI announced Thursday it has bought all outstanding shares in Oakville, Ont.-based Affinity Management Ltd., developer of the Compass brand of farm and agribusiness […] Read more

Are you prepared to deal with tougher times on your farm?

Know your current ratio, honestly estimate your gross revenue, and be ready to talk to your lender, says adviser

Managing your financial risk is a little like skinny-dipping — you’ve got to protect your assets, and that’s hard to do when you’re not covered. “When the tide goes out, everybody can see who’s swimming naked,” said MNP agricultural tax specialist Rob Strilchuk (quoting Warren Buffett). “We had a lot of good years, but when […] Read more


Numbers don’t lie — but can mislead if there’s not enough of them

When it comes to making decisions on the farm, the more data the better —
especially if that data comes from other farms

Did you know that there’s a direct correlation between the divorce rate in Maine and the per capita consumption of margarine in the States? It’s true. If you chart the data on a graph going back a decade or two, one line rises and falls with the other. That’s the problem with data like this […] Read more

Telus buys Farm At Hand

Vancouver farm management software development firm Farm At Hand has become an arm of one of the Big Five in Canada’s communication services sector. Farm At Hand, which makes the cloud-based Crop Planner software suite for farmers and the Farm At Hand Agronomy suite for agronomists, announced Tuesday it has been wholly acquired by Telus […] Read more


A sound business plan can determine how efficiently your 'farm engine' operates.

What’s in the engine room of your farm business?

It’s not just the physical assets that power your enterprise and keep it moving forward

My friend Claire Booth from Australia shared a photo of her farm office referring to it as the “engine room” of their business. I like that analogy and am conscious of the fact that we all run with an engine and without that source of power or way of moving forward, we stay in one […] Read more

Updated benchmarks for AgriProfit$ tool

Updates have been made to the AgriProfit$ crops and forages benchmarks. The benchmarks — calculated averages of costs and returns by soil zones — have been updated to include individual producer’s data collected for the 2017 growing season. This includes producers’ actual costs, revenues, and margins by soil zones for different crops and forages. AgriProfit$ […] Read more


Many months pass from seed year to seed year. Do you have a checklist to prepare your equipment and employees before they take to the field?

Things go better with standard operating procedures

All sorts of companies have so-called SOPs — because they save time and grief, and empower employees

Pilots complete checklists before every flight, even when flying the same plane several times a week. Farm equipment operators, on the other hand, often rely on their memory from 11 months ago when they start up the air drill or other equipment at the beginning of a new season. Some farm owners and managers, however, […] Read more

You need to up your game on managing people, say producers

Top-down management doesn’t cut it anymore, but fewer than one in five farms have a human resources plan

Five years ago, Kevin Serfas tried to manage human resources on his farm. It was a “train wreck.” Workers were walking away from the job. The people who stayed weren’t happy. And Serfas found himself on Facebook, “begging people to come run a tractor.” Finally, he went to one of his remaining workers and said […] Read more