GFM Network News


Both CN and CP Rail plan to buy thousands of new, more efficient hopper cars in the next few years.

Province ‘assessing’ its hopper car fleet

The province is “currently assessing policy options” for its fleet of hopper cars, says an analyst with Alberta Agriculture. In the early ’80s, Alberta and Saskatchewan each purchased 1,000 hopper cars to supplement the fleet of 13,300 owned by the federal government, noted Chuanliang Su. Read more: Railways say they’re ready for large shipping season […] Read more

This CP Rail graphic shows how new hopper cars and longer trains will eventually up the capacity of a unit train by nearly 45 per cent.

CP joins CN in rejuvenating grain hopper car fleet

New-generation hopper cars are shorter, 
carry more grain, and are faster to load and unload

CP Rail says it will spend more than $500 million on new high-capacity grain hopper cars. The company announced last month it has ordered 1,000 new hopper cars and expects to see more than 500 of them in service by the end of the year. “These new rail cars will revitalize our fleet,” said CP […] Read more



The new transportation bill could bring in reciprocal penalties and new rules on ‘adequate’ service, but the looming issue of an aging hopper car fleet will be put off for another day, said grain transportation expert 
Steve Pratte.

Is a grain transportation remedy finally on its way?

A new rail bill is due this spring. Will Ottawa find a fix for long-standing issues or will it be more of the same old?

A new rail transport bill is on the horizon, but it’s still too soon to say whether that will bring about meaningful change for Canadian farmers. “We’ll see what comes out in the new rail bill — how far they’re willing to go on this,” said Steve Pratte, manager of policy development for the Canadian […] Read more


Railways’ mandatory minimum grain handles ending

Canada’s big two railways can resume moving grain at their own pace as the federal government’s order in council setting mandatory minimum grain traffic quotas is set to expire unrenewed. Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and Transport Minister Lisa Raitt announced the federal government won’t renew the mandatory minimums, which are due to expire Saturday. The […] Read more

Business has been steadily increasing since the Battle River Railway had its ribbon-cutting ceremony in December 2010.

The little railway that could

The railway moved 2,100 rail cars last year but getting them is an 
ongoing challenge

The Battle River Railway is a little engine that could — and it just keeps chugging along despite challenges thrown its way. “The grain business looks good. We moved 2,100 cars last year and we have every expectation of moving that much or more this year,” said Ken Eshpeter, the railway’s chairman and CEO and […] Read more