GFM Network News


ADM, InnovaFeed to build world’s biggest insect protein plant in Illinois

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. grain trader and processor Archer Daniels Midland and French biotech company InnovaFeed announced plans on Thursday to build the world’s largest insect protein plant at Decatur, Illinois. The announcement comes amid rising global feed grain prices and tightening supplies, and as more companies work toward reducing the carbon footprint of […] Read more

This forecast map is from the July 9 weekly update from the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network. Producers can get the weekly update by signing up at www.prairiepest.ca.

New user-friendly website for Prairie pest network

The Prairie Pest Monitoring Network has a new user-friendly website. The website, prairiepest.ca, has the features that were part of its long-running blog, such as risk maps, insect monitoring protocols, weekly updates, and insect of the week features. “The new site expands the functionality of the previous PPMN blog,” said network co-chair Jennifer Otani, a […] Read more


Insecticide-resistant alfalfa weevils have been found in some fields in southern Alberta.

Resistant insect populations growing in southern Alberta

Insecticide-resistant alfalfa weevils are cropping up in alfalfa seed-growing regions, and beneficial bugs may be the answer

Insecticide-resistant insects have flown under the radar on the Canadian Prairies — but researchers are keeping an eye on a growing population of them in southern Alberta. “We don’t have very many insects that are resistant to insecticides here on the Prairies, so luckily, it’s not that widespread of an issue,” said Boyd Mori, researcher […] Read more

A stem infected by root rot shows signs of shredding, shattering and the development of a sclerotial body. The central cavity (pith tissue) has been destroyed, which is characteristic of stem rot.

A mix of pests and diseases on the roster for #crop2020

Wheat midge, wheat stem sawfly, net blotch and other things to look out for

There are several diseases and pests farmers might want to keep an eye out for this growing season. “It’s kind of a hodgepodge this year,” said Jeremy Boychyn, agronomy research extension specialist with Alberta Barley and Alberta Wheat. The southern part of the province has had consistent issues with grasshoppers because it has been so […] Read more


Alberta has many types of ground beetles, but they’re good guys — adults eat weed seeds and their larvae feed on pest insects.

Last year’s lousy weather had one beneficial side-effect

Conditions were good for ground beetles, a beneficial insect that is a friend to farmers

If you’ve seen large numbers of beetles this spring, researcher Kevin Floate would like to hear from you. One such report has been received from a location north of Edmonton, and more are likely. This outbreak is similar to one in 2010 when large numbers of ground beetles were reported in several locations in the […] Read more

Diamondback moths typically arrive in early spring after being carried by wind currents from the U.S. or even northern Mexico. Their larvae will feed on canola and mustard.

Crop pest survey tools up and running

The Alberta Insect Pest Monitoring Network has “live feed maps” up and running for the province. The maps show results from traps around the province set up and overseen by co-operator farmers. As co-operators post results from the traps, they are posted immediately to the map. The five insects covered by these maps are bertha […] Read more


A sample of some of the wireworms and click beetles found in Alberta.

‘We’re just seeing the tip of the iceberg’ when it comes to wireworms

Populations are growing and control methods shrinking, says provincial crop specialist

Wireworm damage to field crops is poised to escalate, says a provincial crop specialist. “For several decades, Lindane (Vitavax Dual, etc.) insecticide applied to crops on the Canadian Prairies kept wireworm numbers low,” said Neil Whatley, crop specialist at the Alberta Ag-Info Centre. “Since the ban of this organochlorine pesticide in 2004, wireworm damage in […] Read more

Boyd Mori.

New insect expert introduces himself and advises on key pests for 2020

Cabbage seed pod weevils, bertha army worms and pea leaf weevils the insects to watch for in 2020

The province has gained one new entomologist but has lost its best-known bug specialist. Boyd Mori, a new assistant professor in the University of Alberta’s agriculture department, paid tribute to provincial insect management specialist Scott Meers in his presentation at FarmTech — and urged his audience to lobby the government for a replacement. “Scott Meers […] Read more


Scott Meers.

Insect specialist Scott Meers retires

The man known as the ‘bug counter’ is stepping down. In an email he wrote to the Alberta Insect Pest Monitoring network newsletter, Scott Meers said that it has been an honour to work in this role, but it is time to move on. He also stated that he has made the decision independent of […] Read more

Cleaning up spilled grain around a bin eliminates potential breeding sites for pests such as the flat grain beetle.

Expert offers tips for successful crop storage

Keeping out pests and getting rid of excess moisture are key, says provincial crop specialist

A little preparation prior to harvesting can ensure worry-free winter crop storage. “Warm or wet conditions at harvest and multi-staged crops are potential ingredients for storage problems,” said provincial crop specialist Harry Brook. “Don’t get an unpleasant surprise when selling the grain with discounts or by being rejected for heated grain or insect problems.” Clean […] Read more