GFM Network News


Hanson Acres: The countdown begins, with eight more weeks to go

“Remember,” Elaine was told, “not everyone’s going to agree with you.”

Reading Time: 4 minutes “Thanks Jeff,” Elaine said, barely looking up as her husband refilled her coffee cup. Elaine and her mother-in-law were at the kitchen table, working on Elaine’s campaign. With eight weeks to go until the end of elections for the board in Saskatchewan, Donna was re-reading the final draft of Elaine’s candidate bio while Elaine tweeted […] Read more

Tom Button is editor of Country Guide magazine.

Editor’s Note: How good is the advice I’m getting?

Reading Time: 2 minutes It’s a question we didn’t ask farm accountants when we asked them what traits separate their average from their above-average farm clients. The days of bookkeepers and cash accounting aren’t over, of course. Every farm has different needs. But accountants and accrual-based accounting are the new norm, and the transition has helped enable the professionalization […] Read more


Hanson Acres: A big decision, and a nervous wait

What will her family say, Elaine wonders. And what about all those other farmers?

Reading Time: 4 minutes Elaine Hanson’s laptop glowed at one end of the kitchen table. At the other, Elaine, her husband Jeff, and Jeff’s parents Dale and Donna sat in a cluster, hovering over their coffees and watching the screen. Elaine bit her lip, one eye on the screen and the other on her phone. Her fingers texted continuously. […] Read more

Tom Button is editor of Country Guide magazine.

Editor’s Note: A motion that needs support

Reading Time: 2 minutes As farmers across the country churn their way through this winter’s virtual meeting season, here’s a proposal for adding a useful (and profitable) bit of debate. It’s way past time for more farm groups to start investing a slice of their research budgets into exploring the business questions that will be crucial to their members’ […] Read more


Hanson Acres: So how come Connor is still sitting in the truck?

“You’d better get him home,” Donna said. “Elaine’s looking for him.”

Reading Time: 5 minutes When the phone rang Donna finished sewing to the end of the seam before she picked up. “Hrguagh?” she said, realizing too late that she was still holding three pins in her mouth. “Um… Donna?” her daughter-in-law Elaine asked. “Sorry,” Donna said, removing the pins. “I can call you back?” “No!” Donna said. “I’m glad […] Read more

Tom Button is editor of Country Guide magazine.

Editor’s Note: In control, and ready to take on 2021

Reading Time: 2 minutes We’ve all heard it. There’s that proverb that says farmers make their worst decisions in good times. Well, after the last decade, it’s pretty clear that it just isn’t true. When we think about innovation in farming, it’s no surprise that we all rush to point at farm machinery, smart phones, new genetics, and new […] Read more


Hanson Acres: Making more room at the Christmas table

With or without COVID-19, the big thing is to maintain the connection!

Reading Time: 4 minutes For the 2020 Christmas dinner there were seven places around Jeff and Elaine Hanson’s table. The two of them, their two kids, Jeff’s parents, Dale and Donna, and Elaine’s laptop. “I think we’re spending more time with extended family this year than ever,” Donna said. Before and during Christmas dinner the Hansons had caught up, […] Read more

Tom Button is editor of Country Guide magazine.

Editor’s Note: Into 2021 with a change of plan

Reading Time: 2 minutes In the century-plus that Country Guide has been publishing, there have been few times with as much change in the air for Canada’s farms as there is heading into this January. If this were any other industry, it would be the stuff of headlines. It isn’t just that change is afoot on Canada’s farms, it’s […] Read more


Hanson Acres: The air turns blue, in more ways than one

It was supposed to be so simple. Pick up the kids. Take them to school. Go for a coffee…

Reading Time: 4 minutes “Once this pandemic is over,” Donna had told her husband Dale while she filled a travel mug with coffee, “I’m going to start a safari business.” “Huh?” Dale said through a mouth full of toast and peanut butter. “This past week I’ve seen nine moose, 12 deer, four antelope and two raccoons from the road.” […] Read more

Hanson Acres: A long hot summer suddenly comes to a sticky sweet end

It all just goes to show that on the farm, if it isn’t one thing, it’s always another

Reading Time: 5 minutes Near the end of harvest, Jeff could barely remember a day that hadn’t been hot. Too hot. The excitement of a nice sunny day had worn off weeks earlier. At least there was a breeze today. “Can we have a bonfire tonight, Dad?” 10-year-old Connor asked from the passenger seat as Jeff turned into the […] Read more