GFM Network News


Tom Button

Editor’s Note: The right year to celebrate

Reading Time: 2 minutes As we get into spring, find some time for thinking and brainstorming how you can make 2021 a milestone year that your farm will long remember. It’s the right advice. Not every ag sector is having a banner year. And even within the grain and oilseed sector, not every farm is feeling on top of […] Read more

Tom Button

Editor’s Note: Knowing the value of the job ahead

Reading Time: 2 minutes Success at business is success at putting your values into action. In farming, that’s good for the world, and it’s going to continue that way as long as family farming survives. One of my personal distractions this spring will be planting sugar maples and white oaks that we’re acquiring with the help of the local […] Read more


Tom Button

Editor’s Note: A bigger question than COVID-19

Reading Time: 2 minutes Agriculture is racing into the future. We all agree on that. But what will farms look like in that future? And who will farm them? I can’t say for sure, and I don’t think you can either. Here’s an interesting assignment for a snowy March evening. Make a list of your current machinery inventory and […] Read more

Tom Button

Editor’s Note: How good is the advice I’m getting?

Reading Time: 2 minutes It’s a question we didn’t ask farm accountants when we asked them what traits separate their average from their above-average farm clients. The days of bookkeepers and cash accounting aren’t over, of course. Every farm has different needs. But accountants and accrual-based accounting are the new norm, and the transition has helped enable the professionalization […] Read more


Tom Button

Editor’s Note: A motion that needs support

Reading Time: 2 minutes As farmers across the country churn their way through this winter’s virtual meeting season, here’s a proposal for adding a useful (and profitable) bit of debate. It’s way past time for more farm groups to start investing a slice of their research budgets into exploring the business questions that will be crucial to their members’ […] Read more

Tom Button

Editor’s Note: In control, and ready to take on 2021

Reading Time: 2 minutes We’ve all heard it. There’s that proverb that says farmers make their worst decisions in good times. Well, after the last decade, it’s pretty clear that it just isn’t true. When we think about innovation in farming, it’s no surprise that we all rush to point at farm machinery, smart phones, new genetics, and new […] Read more


Tom Button

Editor’s Note: Into 2021 with a change of plan

Reading Time: 2 minutes In the century-plus that Country Guide has been publishing, there have been few times with as much change in the air for Canada’s farms as there is heading into this January. If this were any other industry, it would be the stuff of headlines. It isn’t just that change is afoot on Canada’s farms, it’s […] Read more

Tom Button

Editor’s Note: A historic year for the family farm

Reading Time: 2 minutes Across the country, 2020 has demonstrated once again that the family is the right management unit for Canada’s farms, in part because it is so amazingly adaptable. In fact, there’s every reason to think the family will see us through future changes too. It’s November already, and already you can feel the calendar beginning to […] Read more


Tom Button

Editor’s Note: Getting together on a plan for 2021

Reading Time: 2 minutes Agriculture is getting more and more diverse and the gaps between our farms are growing, which is why we need a higher percentage of farmers getting involved in farm organizations. Here are two questions we almost never ask in our Country Guide interviews. What farm organizations are you involved in? And how much emphasis do […] Read more

Pandemic planning: Write it down, add it up

Pandemic planning: Write it down, add it up

It's the big lesson of 2020. A business plan is practically guaranteed to up your game, make you more money, and keep you happier and healthier. So what are you doing this winter?

Reading Time: 6 minutes The number gap is stark. In fact, it’s hard to think where you’d find one that’s wider: 88 per cent of farmers who have a written business plan say their plan has so many benefits (both to the farm and to themselves as farmers) that it more than pays for itself. Yet only 21 per […] Read more