GFM Network News


When farm financial pressures mount

Sleepless nights? Behind on your bills? Avoiding the banker? You aren’t alone, and there can be a path back to better times

Reading Time: 7 minutes Maybe Benjamin Franklin said it best. “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” If you find yourself in financial trouble, it’s smart to ask for help. Art Lange is president of AJL Consulting in Edmonton, and in an article from our October 2020 edition, he and an Alberta farm couple worked together to share […] Read more

VRP Farms Ltd. is proud of its farm team made up of people hired both locally and internationally. Staff pictured here, who represent a range of jobs on the farm, come from Canada as well as Mexico, France and the U.K.

Alberta farm builds labour diversity into its core

Is there a better way to find and retain farm employees in Canada’s tough market? Van Raay Paskal Farms figured there must be, with innovative thinking and a readiness to look to non-traditional sources

Reading Time: 9 minutes The sun is barely up but VRP Farms Ltd., a half hour north of Lethbridge, is already humming. Pen riders saddle their horses and barn labourers are shipping, sorting and processing. Feed drivers put their trucks in gear, operators of high hoes and manure trucks shuttle about the site, and truck drivers back up to […] Read more


Patricia Bishop and Josh Oulton are building a business plan to bring linen flax back to their farm, and to the country.

From flax in the field to shirt sleeves

Meet a Nuffield Canada farmer scholar with a vision for a value chain for Canadian-grown linen

Reading Time: 10 minutes [UPDATED: Jan. 11, 2021] Josh Oulton and his partner Patricia Bishop have grown flax on their Nova Scotia farm for nearly a decade, but not with an eye to the market that most Canadian flax growers are after. Instead, Oulton and Bishop grow varieties of flax that produce the plant-based fibre used to make linen, […] Read more

“For me opportunity, I think, lies in trying to partner with other farms.” – Erin Harris.

Farm opportunities on your mind

Canada’s farmers tell us the new directions they’re planning for their farms

Reading Time: 12 minutes Not so long ago, all the buzz was about unleashing Canada’s full agricultural potential on a world that desperately needs our farmers to produce more and more. Global population was booming, more countries were more prosperous, and consumers everywhere were changing and improving their diets. Now our country needs Canada’s farmers to succeed too. Whether […] Read more


The farm reason to travel

Actually, the COVID-19 pandemic is a great chance to re-think how ‘off the beaten track’ travel and extended time overseas can be great business catalysts. Three farmers and a business professor tell us how it works for them

Reading Time: 8 minutes Of course there’s a cost. Travel is an education, but how and where you travel means you do have to make the time, you do have to have the means, and you must seize an opportunity to do it. What do you get for that investment? The answer is both simple and complicated. Travel will […] Read more

“It’s been a game changer in the way that I manage the farm.” – Jake Leguee, Saskatchewan farmer.

Do you have the tools to be a better farm leader?

Becoming a more effective leader will position you to adapt to the challenges and opportunities coming your way

Reading Time: 6 minutes “Management is doing things right. Leadership is doing the right things.” It’s a quote that Weyburn, Sask. farmer Jake Leguee borrows from American management consultant Peter Drucker to describe how a leadership training program he enrolled in this year has helped him become better both as a leader and as a manager on his farm. […] Read more


The international panel of young farmers shows again how they see COVID-19 transforming their world.

What lies ahead in a post-COVID world?

Young farmers around the world weigh how the pandemic has had an impact on them, and how it’ll change how they pursue success

Reading Time: 5 minutes The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged farmers worldwide. Now, only time will tell which of its impacts will be with us the longest, and which will have the greatest impact. Already, though, knowledgeable and influential young farmers across the globe have a sense of what may be next, and certainly what’s necessary for the road ahead. […] Read more

From bad to worse, to better again

How one farm couple and their financial advisor restructured significant debt to dig them out of dire financial circumstances

Reading Time: 6 minutes Art Lange, left, walks the field edge and says that in an ideal world, every farm would make money every year and every farm manager would always make the best financial decisions. But it’s not a perfect world. Well-kept financial records help. So do staying on top of production costs and following a budget, but […] Read more


Pandemic planning: Groundwork

What will Canada's food system look like as we roll toward 2021? And how will you be able to build on those changes to make the family farm more resilient, more sustainable, and a better business?

Reading Time: 8 minutes Resilience has two halves. The part that automatically comes to mind is the way a truly resilient business can take a punch without shutting down. It can survive a bout of bad weather, bad markets, a black swan. But there’s something else too. It isn’t just that a resilient farm keeps breathing. It’s that a […] Read more

Four provinces have specific farm donation laws, says lawyer Mary Childs. But even in other provinces, farmers may qualify for tax credits.

Tax credits for donated food

The pandemic has stretched our ability to supply food banks and provide food aid. New approaches must be found

Reading Time: 4 minutes Even at the best of times, some Canadians can’t afford to buy enough healthy, nutritious food. This year’s pandemic raised the risk that more households would fall into that group. Within just a few weeks of the lockdown, demand at food banks began to rise when millions of Canadians were furloughed or lost their jobs […] Read more