GFM Network News


For mid-sized farms like his, collaborations are more essential than ever, says Brock. In Canada, he now believes, joint ventures have nowhere to go but up.

‘That will never work!’

Mark Brock was told it’s a waste of time for independent farmers to try to collaborate with other farmers. Then he did the research

Reading Time: 10 minutes Consolidation is the name of the game in Canadian business, and especially in Canadian agriculture. The pressure is on everywhere to grow bigger. If you’re a farmer, that means buying your neighbour’s land to grow your economy of scale, and it’s the same if you’re a processor, an input dealer, a chain of accountants or […] Read more

A decade ago, forecasters said global food demand would double. Now they expect half that much. But, says AFT’s Mitch Hunter, the good news is that it may be sustainable.

Feeding the farmer

As global population estimates get scaled back, our sense of priorities is beginning to change

Reading Time: 6 minutes Will the world’s farmers really have to double their food production by 2050? Media reports say it’s true, and many farm sources seem to repeat it almost daily. But not all experts agree. Dr. Mitch Hunter, research director at American Farmland Trust, has analyzed the newest figures and suggests that food demand will likely increase […] Read more


Accidents and other medical emergencies could leave you unconscious or otherwise unable to make your own health care decisions.

Have a plan in place before it’s too late

What every farmer needs to know about health care directives

Reading Time: 5 minutes When the topic of estate planning comes up, the first notion that pops into our heads is how we will divide our assets after we’re gone. That’s important, of course, but an estate plan also include important documents like a health care directive that might be essential while you’re still alive. A health care directive […] Read more

The Thacker family (at back: Ute and Clint, at front: Lynn and Robin).

A place to do business

A farm office may be a profit-making next step for your farm, whether you’re specialized or commodity-based

Reading Time: 5 minutes It’s a familiar story. Almost 50 years ago, when Lynn and Ute Thacker started farming with Lynn’s brothers in Bow Island, Alta., their “office,” if you could call it that, was their kitchen table, and their filing system was a cardboard box. They were producing spearmint and then added dill and finally dry leaf and […] Read more


“That’s the point I think we could have stressed more,” says Kyle. “You say you don’t think it’s a good life, but you’d never do anything else, and we feel the same way.”

‘You can’t hand it to them’

Every transition is unique. This one is too. But inside Kyle (left) and Bryan Maynard’s experience are nuggets that can transform the process for farms across the country

Reading Time: 10 minutes It all makes perfect sense. When, two days before their eighth and 10th birthdays, brothers Bryan and Kyle Maynard lost their dad, Kent, in a tragic farm accident, of course the future of the farm was thrown into disarray. Kent had grown up nearby on a Prince Edward Island dairy and hog farm, but in […] Read more

Data co-ops will move agriculture closer to a circular economy, turning “waste” into useful ingredients.

Control, and revenue too

The co-op aims to put farmers in total control of their data, and the income it earns

Reading Time: 8 minutes A generation ago, farmers first got introduced to GPS yield monitors and the way they could document everything that passed through their combines. From that very first exposure, it seemed inevitable the technology would prove a stepping stone to enhanced on-farm management of crops, inputs and soil health. It didn’t happen overnight, of course, but […] Read more


Estate planning when you have no heirs

Estate planning when you have no heirs

These strategies ensure your hard work in this world creates a meaningful legacy when you’re gone

Reading Time: 5 minutes If you’ve put off writing a will, you’re in good company. A report from the Angus Reid Institute has found that more than half of Canadians have no estate plan. Canadians who don’t have a will typically blame it on the high legal costs, but Bud Arnold, CPA and tax partner with Baker Tilly Canada, […] Read more

“Culinary tourism starts with a base ingredient… agriculture.” – Rebecca Mackenzie.

The open road of culinary tourism

Rebecca Mackenzie sits exactly at the midpoint between farmers and consumers. Can she help bring everyone together?

Reading Time: 6 minutes [UPDATED: Mar. 23, 2021] The past year has shone a sometimes not very flattering light on Canada’s ailing food system, but it has also revealed new challenges and exciting opportunities to bring about long overdue changes for the farming and foodservice industry. For Rebecca Mackenzie, president and CEO of the Culinary Tourism Alliance, it’s time […] Read more


“We don’t know what’s going to happen,” Anthony Taylor says. But farmers can identify the threats most likely to shape their future.

It’s your future

PESTLE analysis aims to help you anticipate the big what-if’s that are going to shape Canada’s farms, and then figure out what you as an individual farmer can do to prepare for them

Reading Time: 7 minutes We live in a volatile world. Things come unexpectedly out of left field — if we ever needed any reminders of that, the last year has provided them in spades. From floods and droughts to trade disputes and weird politics, we’ve seen it all. And we haven’t even mentioned the global pandemic yet. In fact, […] Read more

If businesses took no risks, they most likely would never grow or expand. Farms are no different, but what are you prepared to pay to cover that risk and how will you do it?

A word about your farm

Financial fluency is paying off for farms who learn the lingo

Reading Time: 7 minutes A growing number of financial advisors are talking a different language today than they were 10 or 15 years ago. Increasingly they see that the financial health of the farm goes way beyond the numbers on the balance sheet or income statement. They know those numbers are underpinned by some basic fundamentals that require sound […] Read more