GFM Network News

Doyle Wiebe (l) and Mark Thompson.

Their joint venture

The way Doyle Wiebe and Mark Thompson work together is beginning to look like the future for a big chunk of Canada’s farms, especially in succession

Canada’s farmers are designing ever more creative business arrangements to deal with the scarcity of available land and with the capital requirements for farm expansion, diversification and succession. Now Saskatchewan producer Doyle Wiebe has developed and implemented a joint venture agreement on his farm near Langham, Sask., that may prove one of the most unique […] Read more

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

For Superior Pulses’ director Faisal Usmani and president Noor Faridi, shortlines let them work right where the crops they sell around the world are produced.

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

For this brother and sister, a structure with each contributing at the top of their game is a key to success. James heads up operations, Kristen is chief administrative officer.

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

The idea may come to you in a eureka moment, Skwark says. But the reality is that getting a product into the marketplace takes hard work, endurance, and a refusal to accept anything less than a great result.

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

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 offers top wages, shared-cost benefits, an upcoming pension plan… and respect.

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

We found a huge jump in efficiency in terms of grain loss and quality of sample.”
— David Nagel, 
Mossbank, Sask.

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