GFM Network News

Agriculture has long been a male-dominated industry but that is finally changing, say those at the forefront of the effort to tear down barriers faced by ‘farmwives.’

The times are finally changing for women in agriculture

Changing attitudes and support networks are allowing women to forge a new path in a male-dominated sector

Women have always been an important part of family farms — but over the past 15 years, their roles have evolved, both on the farm and in the agriculture industry as a whole. “A lot of women have taken on different roles that we didn’t see them in actively 15 years ago,” said Kim Keller, […] Read more

We need to engage at a level that builds a sense of community and belonging to empower people to their fullest potential.

We need to do more to attract women to agriculture

To gain their skills and passion, agriculture needs to tear down the barriers that stand in their way

There is a gaping hole in agriculture that needs filling with young, vibrant souls. It is not only for farming, but for all linkages in the food chain. There are 60,000 to 124,000 jobs that need filling. We need women to farm, process, market, advance, innovate, research, manage and create in the food space. What […] Read more

Lloydminster-area author Billi J. Miller is celebrating the up-and-coming generation of farmwives in her new book, Farmwives 2.

There’s no right way to be a woman on the farm

Billi J. Miller has never been a traditional ‘farmwife’ — whatever that means anyway. And that’s just fine by her. “The term ‘farmwife’ has changed so much,” said the Lloydminster-area author. “I don’t fit into that box. And there’s comfort in knowing that there are other women like you.” In 2016, Miller published her first […] Read more

Krysta Harden was one of several speakers at the Advancing Women Conference who urged attendees to take a leadership role, whether on the farm, in their community, or on the boards of farm organizations.

Jump in: Ag needs more women leaders

Attendees at Advancing Women Conference told their voices are needed — 
and they need to encourage each other to speak up

Women are still a minority in farming but they can — and should — play a leading role. That was a recurring theme at this year’s Advancing Women Conference, where attendees were told their leadership and communication skills are badly needed. “Women’s voices are needed, that’s my underlying message — your hard work, your commitment, […] Read more

Better credit risk, smaller loan

It’s not just that women get turned down for loans more often, 
but that too many aren’t getting a proper financial education

In 2014, I published a detailed report on the development of mentorship programs for women in agriculture from a global perspective. This report (which can be found at has since given flight to a number of global study topics with other Nuffield Scholars. Recently, a report in Alberta published by the Agriculture & Food […] Read more

Young women in agriculture today are confident and eager to grab the opportunities the industry offers, says Josie Van Lent, 
pictured here with student Sheena Merrild.

Talent trumps gender in today’s agriculture

Josie Van Lent says young women see the opportunities in agriculture and are reaching out to seize them

Josie Van Lent was “purposely naive” when she began her agriculture career more than 30 years ago. “There were times when the fact that I was female was probably less appreciated, but I was too stupid to see that,” Lakeland College’s dean of agriculture says with a laugh. “Definitely people would react to the fact […] Read more

Allison Ammeter represented Alberta Pulse Growers at the World Pulses Convention in South Africa earlier this year.

Farm leader urges her fellow women farmers not to hold back

Alberta Pulse Growers vp Allison Ammeter has learned not being the ‘hands-on’
 type isn’t a barrier for women in agriculture

You might not guess Allison Ammeter is a farmer just by looking at her. And you wouldn’t be alone. One time, she introduced herself as a farmer during a meeting with a Calgary design firm in a funky little downtown office. The designer took one look at Ammeter’s red high heels and said, “You don’t […] Read more

Women in agriculture bank on change

Straight From the Hip: Give women a fair shake and 
agricultural production will increase

There has been a global failure to improve infrastructure and address policy to enable women to access the same level of education, technology, credit, and land ownership. In many countries I have seen how this has left farming women unprepared for the current and future increases in input costs and challenges in marketing. Women farmers […] Read more