GFM Network News


‘Lightning siege’ sparks wildfires across California wine country

Almost 11,000 strikes reported over 72 hours

Reading Time: 2 minutes Vacaville, California | Reuters — Lightning strikes sparked dozens of wildfires in northern California’s wine country on Wednesday, burning dozens of structures and forcing thousands to flee their homes. California was hit by nearly 11,000 lightning strikes in 72 hours, sparking 367 fires, nearly two dozen of them major, as the state suffered a record […] Read more

Feds line up projects for surplus food program

NGOs backed to gather, distribute 12 million kg of food

Reading Time: 3 minutes The federal government has lined up eight projects to source and distribute perishable produce, meat, eggs and seafood piling up across Canada due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the federal pandemic response, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced in early May that Ottawa would budget $50 million for a food surplus purchase program. The […] Read more


Feds put up $58.6 M for temporary foreign worker supports

Reading Time: 3 minutes Glacier FarmMedia – The federal government is announcing $58.6 million in new money to further support temporary foreign workers in Canada’s agricultural sector, it was announced July 31. Spending is expected to focus on health and safety of temporary foreign workers in Canada. Farmers will be eligible to access $35 million, administrated through Agriculture and […] Read more

Wendy’s secures Canadian greenhouse lettuce supply

Alberta grower to provide sandwich, salad lettuce nationwide

Reading Time: 2 minutes The Canadian wing of U.S. burger chain Wendy’s is going strictly indoors, in southern Alberta, to supply all the lettuce for its salad, burger and chicken sandwich offerings across the country. Whole Leaf, based outside Coaldale, about 20 km east of Lethbridge, was announced last week as the lettuce supplier for the chain’s 384 stores […] Read more


Ontario to insure for crop loss due to lack of labour

AgriInsurance offering hailed as a first in Canada

Reading Time: 2 minutes Ontario’s federal/provincial AgriInsurance program has been temporarily expanded to include coronavirus-related labour shortages as a covered cause for crop loss. Producers already enrolled in an eligible production insurance plan and hit by crop losses due to labour disruptions during the 2020 growing season will be able to get further insurance coverage, the Ontario and federal […] Read more

Ontario extends fruit, forage insurance premium deadlines

Extension offers 'flexibility,' Agricorp says

Reading Time: < 1 minute Ontario fruit and forage growers who have production insurance premiums due this month will now have until June 30 to pay, the province said Monday. The extended premium payment deadline applies only to production insurance plans for fruit, strawberries and asparagus — and to the forage rainfall insurance plan, which uses rainfall as an indicator […] Read more


“It’s all based on your contribution to the profits,” says Rod Bradshaw, here with Shelley and sons.

Teamwork makes the dream work for this group of Alberta farmers

These five Alberta farms have built a co-op that reduces their costs, increases their efficiency, and gets them into markets they otherwise couldn’t tap. The big question is, could it work for you too?

Reading Time: 10 minutes For these five adventurous Alberta farmers, a co-op is more than a way to structure operations. It’s more, too, than the camaraderie and the mutual support they get from working together with the same goal in mind, important though that is. For this group, it’s also about profitability, and about efficiency, and about enhancing their […] Read more

Plummeting french fry sales have potato growers re-evaluating

Restaurant closures slash demand, though 'chip sales have been great'

Reading Time: 2 minutes French fry sales are down across North America as tens of thousands of restaurants have closed during COVID-19, meaning the potato industry has to adapt quickly. Companies that turn potatoes into french fries, wedges and hash browns are slowing down, because there isn’t enough space to store all the frozen product. In Alberta and Manitoba, […] Read more


Canadian, U.S. farms face crop losses on foreign worker delays

Reading Time: 2 minutes Winnipeg/Chicago | Reuters — Mandatory coronavirus quarantines of seasonal foreign workers in Canada could hurt that country’s fruit and vegetable output this year, and travel problems related to the pandemic could also leave U.S. farmers with fewer workers than usual. Foreign labour is critical to farm production in both countries, where domestic workers shun the […] Read more

Michele Manelli.

Michele Manelli — game changer in the world of wine

Here’s what happens when a young Italian abandons a flourishing financial career to “go farming”

Reading Time: 7 minutes I first met Michele Manelli two decades ago at Salcheto, the five-hectare vineyard he had recently bought. Nestled into a Tuscan hillside, at the end of a dirt road, it was billed as one of the finest parcels of land in the Montepulciano area, 250 kilometres northeast of Rome’s airport. The Salcheto story and his […] Read more