GFM Network News


Handlers focus on keeping grain moving despite COVID-19

Grain companies, Canadian Grain Commission working but unsure of future

Canada’s grain companies are committed to keeping grain moving to domestic and export customers, but how the spread of COVID-19 might affect business is still an unknown, says Wade Sobkowich, executive director of the Western Grain Elevator Association. “We are are going to do everything in our power to keep grain moving at this time,” […] Read more

Grain Commission’s chief announces retirement

AAFC's review of Grain Act, and of CGC's future, continues

The Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) is seeking a new chief commissioner. Patti Miller, who has held the position for three years, announced Tuesday to CGC staff that she will retire June 26. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) “will be launching an open, transparent and merit-based process to find a new commissioner as soon as possible,” […] Read more


CN reports grain movement back at pre-strike pace

Canadian National Railway’s grain shipping is back to its pre-strike pace, the railway says. “By the second week of December (week 19), CN returned to shipping at peak levels, as well as taking on all customer hopper demand for the second and third weeks of December,” Montreal-based CN said in a release Thursday. “Despite a […] Read more

Elevator operators seek quick end to CN strike

The Western Grain Elevator Association (WGEA) wants grain shipments on Canadian National Railway (CN) to resume as soon as possible. “It has a major impact for every day that we’re not moving grain on CN,” WGEA executive director Wade Sobkowich said in an interview Tuesday. “A federal mediator has been appointed and that’s a step […] Read more


Canola Council resets course for ‘efficiencies’

Facing new limits on available funding, Canada’s canola value chain organization plans to refocus its work on its “core strengths” and collaborate with other players. The Canola Council of Canada on Wednesday announced a revised work plan, coming out of a “priorities review” undertaken after one of Canada’s biggest grain companies called a halt to […] Read more



U.S. grain firms set up co-ops in tax law’s wake

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. agricultural merchants are scrambling to register themselves as cooperatives after a blunder in the country’s new tax law gave farmers a tax break for selling grains to co-ops rather than private firms. Private crop handlers — including the “big four” merchants Archer Daniels Midland, Bunge, Cargill and Louis Dreyfus — […] Read more

U.S. Congress near deal on tax law’s impact on grain market

Washington | Reuters — U.S. lawmakers are close to resolving a problem with the new federal tax law that gives grain co-operatives an unintended market edge over private companies, but have had a hard time getting agreement among members of the farm sector, a Republican senator said Thursday. A provision in the Republican tax overhaul […] Read more


A cargo ship getting topped up with grain.

Think a big new West Coast terminal is good news? Think again

Expanding storage capacity just helps the big grain companies depress the price paid to farmers

G3 has announced it may build a new grain terminal at the West Lynn terminal on the North Shore of Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet. G3 is the joint venture of U.S.-based multinational grain company, Bunge Ltd., and the Saudi Agricultural and Livestock Investment Co., owned by the Saudi government. It was given the assets of the […] Read more

Should farmers pay for protection against grain company defaults?

The Canadian Grain Commission has proposed setting up a security fund paid 
for by grain companies, but Ontario has gone with a farmer-funded model

Manitoba’s main farm group is eyeing a plan that would see farmers directly fund insurance to cover losses when grain buyers can’t pay their bills. That’s a different route than envisioned by Ottawa under sweeping changes to the Canada Grains Act introduced to Parliament last month. The plan is to replace the Canadian Grain Commission’s […] Read more