Latest articles

That little blue elevator

It’s an unlikely scenario that three friends from Toronto with no agricultural background would find themselves on the wide open prairie buying and exporting lentils, peas and beans. But much has changed in the grain marketing world. Noor Faridi, Faisal Usmani and Aftab Ghouri might just be the face of that change. Their new company, […] Read more

Shortline prospecting

Shortline railway companies are creating new opportunities for farm commodities, and for farmers too

Operating a shortline railway in Western Canada isn’t an easy proposition. Over the past 20 years, many companies have come, and ultimately gone, after trying to revive lines that CN and CP had abandoned in their waves of rationalization. But now, a move from single-farm producer car loading to higher-volume sites might become the key […] Read more

Finding your farm self

How one farm is using innovative business strategies to fuel its passion

We hear much talk today about business models and strategies, and we read about new and innovative ideas to change and manage farm business. But what do the words actually mean? A “good idea” can be a proactive idea or even a reactionary one; it can be traditional or alternative. But it would seem that […] Read more

Better decision-making for the farm

Farm business models aren’t keeping up, and our farms are losing out as a result Financial and farm advisers throw around terms like “model” and “strategy” coupled with other words like “innovative” and “new,” as though we should all be excited about them. Siblings James Kuhl and Kristen Gray at River Valley Specialty Farms embrace […] Read more

Kelli Skwark

A recipe and a dream

What does it take to add value to Canadian crops? Good entrepreneurial skills and, as you’ll see, a little bit more

Value-added agriculture on the prairies might conjure images of a large-scale industry whose size reflects the immensity of the wheat, lentil and canola fields that stretch as far as the eye can see. And you might think it’s mostly farmers formulating products that add value to what they grow. After all, it sounds so right […] Read more

man holding wheat in hand

What if the party’s over?

Maybe these strategies will keep more of us from repeating the tragic ’80s

What is a grain farmer to do? Encouraged by both record-high crop prices and production over the past few years, you bought more land and upgraded your combine. With record-low interest rates, these were shrewd business decisions that pencilled out. They made sense, right? Except now crop prices are flat, and those responsible for input […] Read more

Kris Mayerle with Greenleaf Seeds at the facilities in Tisdale, Sask.

Farming. It’s more than a job

Human Resources: When a young employee left their farm to look for a job that could become a career, Kris Mayerle asked, ‘Why can’t that be here?’

At the edge of the boreal forest in northeast Saskatchewan, the Mayerle family hires 13 full and seasonal employees for their 21,000-acre farm, seed processing plant and custom harvesting business. One of their employees is in his 43rd year with the company, another is going on 18 years, and many others have been there more […] Read more

Man standing on John Deere tractor

Connecting the dots

Farmers like Mossbank, Sask.’s David Nagel are linking equipment technology and agronomy

Not too many of us consider the particular skills we’re using as we navigate a smart phone, or tablet, or gaming device. We figure them out by simply playing around on them. The platforms today are user friendly, easy to navigate, and chock full of data and applications that may or may not be helpful […] Read more

Where science and politics meet

Massive irrigation projects are likely in Sask.'s future

In 1967, the Gardiner Dam on Saskatchewan’s Lake Diefenbaker was built with the potential to irrigate half a million acres. Today only 110,000 acres are irrigated and only two percent of available water is used. Study after study has indicated a huge boon for agriculture, industry and employment if the irrigation potential were to be […] Read more

man standing on tractor truck

“Let’s make some food”

Canada has enormous potential to increase irrigation in Saskatchewan. So why is so little happening?

Using only 20 per cent of the available supply, there is enough water running through Saskatchewan’s Gardiner Dam at Lake Diefenbaker to irrigate half a million acres. The potential for farm diversification and value-added processing would add billions to the national agriculture economy and cement Canada’s role in feeding a hungry world. And the other […] Read more