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

A coalition of national farm organizations say farmers’ stewardship efforts should be recognized in the new carbon credit program.

Giving credit where it’s due: New front opens in carbon tax debate

Farmers could benefit greatly from a carbon trading market but the devil will be in the details

Reading Time: 3 minutes A new front has opened up in the carbon tax debate: What sort of reward will farmers get for their stewardship efforts? On March 6, the federal Environment Department — now named Environment and Climate Change Canada — issued a draft of the regulatory framework for its new carbon offset market. This sets the stage […] Read more


Ottawa’s new Clean Fuel Standard could be a big win for canola growers, says the Canola Council of Canada.

Using more canola for biofuels would be a ‘win win’

Canola Council of Canada backs the federal government’s plan to boost the use of green fuels

Reading Time: 2 minutes Part of the federal government’s plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is drawing qualified praise from the Canola Council of Canada. The organization says it “sees potential in the federal government’s proposed rules for the Clean Fuel Standard.” The measure is intended to “reduce the carbon intensity of the fuels” and one of those ways […] Read more

Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, with Infrastructure Minister Catherine McKenna (l) and Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault (r), speaks at the Dominion Arboretum in Ottawa on Dec. 11, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Blair Gable)

New greening programs planned for ag alongside carbon tax hike

Carbon price to hit $170 per tonne by 2030

A new federal climate plan which further cranks up taxes on carbon emissions also includes pledges of new programs to help sink more carbon into farmland. The government on Friday released the sequel to its 2016 Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change — a “strengthened” climate plan, titled A Healthy Environment and a […] Read more


Cherilyn Jolly-Nagel. (GGC video screengrab)

Grain Growers of Canada lobby Parliament Hill

Agriculture can help restart Canada's economy and the federal government help by addressing some issues, group says

Agriculture can help revitalize Canada’s post-COVID economy, but the federal government should clear the track for it. That means updating regulations to encourage technological innovation, improving market access for agricultural exports and recognizing farm practices that help the environment, Grain Growers of Canada (GGC) says. The organization, which represents 15 regional, provincial and national grain […] Read more

A goal for rural internet speeds set several years ago is 10 times faster than previously set goals, but the goalposts that define high speed are always moving.

Better rural broadband internet is coming — eventually

Ottawa is pledging $2 billion for fast rural internet, but how that money gets spent is the key question

Reading Time: 7 minutes Ottawa’s pledge to spend $2 billion to bring decent broadband service to rural and remote areas is welcome news, but the devil will be in the details, say officials in Alberta. “I’m encouraged to see the funding, but the full delivery of it is the next question — how will we be able to make […] Read more


Repayment of 2018 cash advances now due

Repayment of 2018 cash advances now due

Deadline is September 30

Reading Time: < 1 minute If you took advantage of Ottawa’s extended repayment deadline for cash advances, the time to pay the loan has run out. In March, the deadlines for repayments of 2018 cash advances for grains, oilseeds pulses, cattle and bison were extended to Sept. 30 (from April 30 previously) because of the pandemic. The extensions, which affected […] Read more

An artists’ rendition of the Merit Functional Foods plant under construction in Winnipeg. (Meritfoods.com)

Plant-protein processor’s new processing plant gets grant

Feds, province put up cash for new equipment

The federal and Manitoba governments have added a seven-figure contribution to their support for a new facility to process plant proteins from canola and peas. Merit Functional Foods will put the additional money toward “new equipment purchases that will support the transformation of raw inputs into value-added goods.” The unspecified new technology is expected to […] Read more


U.S. farm aid began shooting up in 2018 thanks to Washington’s ‘market facilitation program’ but will go sky high this year after President Donald Trump pledged $16 billion for farmers hurt by the pandemic. “I tell you, you can go back to Abraham Lincoln, there’s no president who has treated the farmers as well as Trump,” the president said in announcing the payout in May.

Farm aid is raining down south of the border, but not in Canada

Alberta farmers say they don’t want bailouts – but effective risk management programs are needed

Reading Time: 7 minutes American farmers will receive record-high amounts of farm aid this year, but Canadian producers say they don’t want a handout — just a business risk management program that works. The current programs, such as AgriStability, don’t function well, said Sexsmith-area farmer Greg Sears. “It’s not predictable, it’s not timely, and it rarely pays out — […] Read more

(Nadezhda_Nesterova/iStock/Getty Images)

Details on federal food surplus program expected in ‘days’

Ottawa already at work with businesses, minister says

Ottawa — Detailed plans of the federal government’s food buyback program are expected soon, according to Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau. Ottawa tabbed $50 million of its COVID-19 response funds for agriculture to buy surplus food from farmers and redistribute it to communities in need. The challenge Bibeau and her federal colleagues are faced with is […] Read more