Latest articles


Setting the right price for the grocery shelf

Canada’s grocery stores are eager for more producers to fill their shelves with great straight-from-the-farm products. To win, though, you’ve got to price them right

From the outside, it looks likes a huge opportunity just waiting for you to grab hold of it. And maybe it really is. We’ve all been there. You already have an idea of what it costs to grow your crops and raise your livestock, and one day when you’re pushing your cart down the aisle […] Read more


Picking up business

New food-processing technologies are creating a new era of opportunities, including for crops that just get plowed under today

Behind the scenes in Canada’s food-processing industry, countless entrepreneurs are conjuring up new business opportunities by making more efficient use of our crops, including through improved processing and the use of previously wasted portions stock. Watching over and assisting many of these developers is Roberta Irving, who is in charge of business development at the […] Read more



A million women farmers

To get big numbers of women farmers, the U.S. looks to small farms

According to the USDA’s Economic Research Service, the number of female-operated farms in the U.S. more than doubled between 1982 and 2012. On top of that, if you add in the number of women who participate on male-led or jointly led farms as primary and secondary operators, the U.S. now has nearly one million female […] Read more


LGBT on the farm

On these farms, diversity is good for business

Now 33, Otis Bell admits he’s outside the mainstream of agriculture. Growing up in Seattle, Bell next lived in Olympia, where he got his first taste of growing plants and gardening, and where he decided to get more directly involved with farming. “I think being queer made me take a step out of some of […] Read more



Two women holding jars of jam

A jam of a business

If you haven’t heard of Vanilla Spice Pear Butter or Sundae in a Jar, these young entrepreneurs have some lessons to teach

When Kylie Wasiuta and Sara Porter met a decade ago, they were in their teens and into reining and horses, completely consumed with showing and competing for prizes. They still found time to share some homemade jam, however, but who then could have predicted their jam-making savvy would bloom into a full-fledged business? “I grew […] Read more


Man and woman holding plant seedlings

Untraditional

Greenhouses may not belong in the traditional farm stereotype, but Chris and Crystal Page reflect a new era of young farmers diversifying for business, and for the challenge too

There can be as many reasons for running a diversified farm business as there are farms. Diversification can add income stability and reduce overall operational risk. It can exploit market opportunities, enabling the farm family to take advantage of a lower cost of entry than competitors who might not have the same access to land […] Read more



A man and woman smiling together.

The other energy business

While Grant focuses on the farm, Colleen Dyck is building their Gorp energy bars into a national brand

I always knew I was going to start something,” says Colleen Dyck. “I just didn’t know what it was going to be or what it was going to look like.” Of course, many people have dreams, and many people nurture a hope that they will become, build, or do something special. It doesn’t always happen. But […] Read more


A head for business

With shrewd marketing, Chris and Lawrence Warwaruk have bought back the farm their family had lost to the bank

The first step seemed big enough. It was the gruelling mid-1990s. Grain prices had been in the tank more or less continuously for 15 years when, like many others, the Warwaruk family at Erickson, an hour north of Brandon, Man., lost their farm. Through the turmoil, the four Warwaruk brothers — Chris, Eric, Eugene and […] Read more



Time to decide

Small, mid-size and large farms all are 
searching for more hours in the day. As it turns out, the solution is the same for all of them

When James Perry became director of human resources at the United States Department of Agriculture some 30 years ago, he fell into the trap. He felt instantly overwhelmed. Faced with being in charge of training, development and education for 3,600 employees, he spent more time deciding what he didn’t have time to do than he […] Read more


Discovering the farm

This University of Manitoba project is 
breaking new ground in getting non-farmers to know about, and care about agriculture


The word discover is one of those words that means the opposite of what it used to. Today, to discover something means to find it out for yourself. In the old days, to discover something meant to uncover it or to reveal it to someone else. It’s a useful thought to keep in mind when […] Read more