GFM Network News


Better decision-making for the farm

Reading Time: 3 minutes 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

Reading Time: 7 minutes 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

Reading Time: 9 minutes 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?’

Reading Time: 4 minutes 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

Reading Time: 7 minutes 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

Reading Time: 4 minutes 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?

Reading Time: 7 minutes 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

Dan Erlandson sanding by a gravel road.

Getting fresh in Saskatchewan

The farmers in Prairie Fresh Food Corporation are transforming the world’s breadbasket (at least a part of it) into their own salad bowl by getting as business minded as grain growers

Reading Time: 4 minutes The famous and predictable vista of Saskatchewan includes tracts of yellow canola, fields of wheat bending to the endless wind, and more recently, the deep leafy green of soybeans. But irrigation pivots, rows of cucumbers, beans and corn? Not so much. Still, despite its small population and few urban centres of size, Saskatchewan folk are demanding more locally grown and fresh produce. And local […] Read more


Reading Atwood

Reading Time: 9 minutes When author Margaret Atwood gets invited to tour western ranchland, some farmers see her as a lifesaver, others as a crackpot. From there, the plot thickens.   “Ranchers have been given a Cinderella plot,” Margaret Atwood tells us. “The wicked stepmother says, ‘Sure, you can go to the party, but first you must complete these impossible tasks.'” […] Read more

Management

Reading Time: 4 minutes Henry Mintzberg may be Canada’s most famous business thinker, but his thinking about farming sounds at first very unbusiness-like. Farmers, he believes, will do a better job of managing if they not only see their farm as a business but also embrace the lifestyle that comes with it. In fact, much of what Mintzberg preaches […] Read more