GFM Network News


FarmTech cancelled, Agri-Trade still a go

The foundation that puts on FarmTech is cancelling the popular event, which was slated to run in January. “The FarmTech Foundation looks forward to when we can safely reconvene for… Canada’s premier crop production and farm management conference,” said a statement from the foundation, which is comprised of the provincial wheat, barley, canola and pulse […] Read more



The big-picture economic view of the coming year is like the satellite one — a bit hazy, a bit turbulent, 
but not bad overall.

Buckle up: Here’s your economic forecast for 2019

Canada’s top ag economist has the lowdown on the economy, trade, interest rates, and your income

What’s the forecast for Canadian ag? How about murky with a good chance of turbulence? ‘Headwinds’ was the phrase du jour when the country’s foremost ag economist came by FarmTech late last month. “There are lots of good things going on in the industry, but lots of headwinds as well — trade tensions, weather, excess […] Read more

RCMP Superintendent Peter Tewfik outlined the RCMP’s rural crime strategy at FarmTech.

Rural crime presentation draws a packed house at FarmTech

RCMP superintendent urges audience to let police do their job and to avoid confronting intruders

Rural crime is a topic that everyone wants to talk about. “This is not just an issue in Alberta, but across the country,” RCMP Supt. Peter Tewfik said at a crowded FarmTech session. Rural property crime actually went down by 10 per cent in the province in 2018, he said. This means 480 fewer home […] Read more


Indiana farmer Kyler Laird posted this video in November after making a new remote control for his automated combine because he wanted something more user friendly than his laptop. In the video, he uses the joystick on the game controller to back the combine out of the shed, bring it alongside a grain cart, and then transfer grain to the cart. To find this and other videos by Laird, go to YouTube.com and search for ‘Kyler Laird.’ 
PHOTOS: From ‘portable joystick system’ on youtube.com

Robo-tractors invented by farmers are already here

Software-savvy producers aren’t waiting for equipment makers — 
they’re writing code and automating their machines

Kyler Laird did it the John Deere way when he returned to the family farm in Indiana after his father’s death in 2010. But after five years of sitting in a tractor, planting crooked rows of corn, he decided to do it his way instead. “Even when I was a kid out discing or out […] Read more

Are you keeping your accountant awake at night?

The thought of farms getting hit with a huge — and unnecessary — tax bill is a scary one, say two tax experts

What keeps you up at night? Up and down commodity prices? Weather? Finding (or keeping) rental land? For accountants Ryan Stevenson and Dean Gallimore, it’s the thought of farmers getting whacked with a tax bill they could easily avoid. “One of the best things about farming is that farming companies can transfer from one generation […] Read more


Small-plot trials are designed to account for different variables, but producers put more trust in field-scale testing. Researchers are now developing protocols for conducting field-scale trials to see if they bear out the results from small-plot studies.

Scaling up: How to take small-size research from plot to field

Many farmers are skeptical of small-plot research results, 
but proper protocols are needed to scale up to a field level

Farmers are making some pretty big decisions off test strips — and that scares JP Pettyjohn. “We could flip a coin and pretty much come up with the same answer,” said Pettyjohn, a crop technology instructor at Lakeland College. “I don’t want an answer. I want the right answer.” Small-plot trials have been widely used […] Read more

FarmTech attendees gave Stephen Harper a rousing welcome and received in return a blueprint for success in an increasingly protectionist world.

Adapt to the new world order, says Stephen Harper

Globalization foes are 
just getting started, but free traders can thrive if they adapt

He was enthusiastically welcomed as the prime minister who scrapped the wheat board, earning a standing ovation before the first word of his keynote address. But Stephen Harper had his eyes on an even bigger farm issue when he spoke to an enthusiastic crowd of nearly all of FarmTech’s 2,000 attendees. In a sweeping political […] Read more



Looking to earn bragging rights as the best wheat grower?

Applications must be submitted by July 1

Alberta Wheat Commission is holding a fun contest to find the “most productive wheat grower” in the province. There are separate categories for dryland and irrigated farms, and entrants must grow a registered class/variety that falls under the Canadian Grain Commission western standards (CWRS, CWHWS, CWAD, CWRW, CWSWS, CWES, CPSW, CPSR, CNHR, or CWSP). The […] Read more