GFM Network News


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

Can COVID-19 save community supported agriculture?

Despite all the headlines, consumers have been slow to sign on to community supported agriculture. Now, COVID-19 is giving it fresh life, but farmers will still need a dose of business smarts

Reading Time: 6 minutes Every spring, Graham Sparrow asks the same question: Should I continue offering CSA shares? Sparrow has been selling shares of organic produce through the community supported agriculture (CSA) model since he started Sparrow’s Nest Organics more than 20 years ago. He admits, though, “I’ve always struggled to keep people interested and keep the CSA going.” […] Read more


Meaningful change rarely happens overnight, but there are techniques you can employ to help ensure that the changes you make are the right ones for your farm.

Why you should go slow to go fast

Next Steps: Meaningful change rarely happens overnight, but the Kaizen and “5-Why” techniques can help ensure that the changes we do make are the right ones for our farms

Reading Time: 6 minutes Abraham Lincoln famously said, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” In short, if you want to do a job right and do it well, you first need to spend adequate time preparing yourself, the tools and the process. How does this translate […] Read more

Increasingly, educated farmers are bringing a world of new ideas back to the farm, says Sask. rancher Adrienne Ivey.

‘I’m a Canadian farmer’

In a summer of so much change, with regional differences as big as ever and the differences between farm sectors seeming to multiply, who really knows what “I’m a farmer” means?

Reading Time: 12 minutes There’s absolutely no such thing as a “typical” Canadian farm, let alone a typical farmer. Big statistics describe Canada’s farmers as a whole, though they tell only a small part of the story. For starters, there aren’t many of you around anymore, and fewer with every passing decade: 271,935 at last count. But you take […] Read more


Crowdfunding the farm

These unconventional farms are raising the funds they need for expansion and to support their ongoing operations by turning to customers and small investors

Reading Time: 5 minutes When Kate Collins got the idea to transition her farm from market vegetables to medicinal herbs, she learned she’d need new infrastructure to dry, process and store bulk herbs, teas, seasonings and skin care products. The project was bigger than you might think. It would cost Foggy River Farm at Uxbridge, Ont., $45,000 to convert […] Read more

This summer, rural Albertans will be able to access the free Crowd Security app to help tackle rural crime.

Rural crime: There’s an app for that

Rural crime rates are going up because criminals think they won’t get caught. We’ve got to change that, and this app may help

Reading Time: 9 minutes As I was writing this article, I learned through a Twitter post that a neighbouring farm five km away had experienced a break and enter of their farm shop. The Twitter post encouraged people in the community to check their shops to see if anyone else had been victimized. Unfortunately, I did not see the […] Read more


“Our success depends on surrounding ourselves with competent, skilled team members,” says Farm Management Canada’s Heather Watson.

Does your farm team have the skills your farm needs the most?

Summer can be the best time of year to ask

Reading Time: 9 minutes First, let’s start with something everyone can agree on. Investing in developing the skills of the farm team is vital for the continued success of every farm. It’s documented by Farm Management Canada’s Dollars and Sense study too, and by the finding that the number one practice of Canada’s top farmers — in other words, […] Read more

Yukon gold

Could you farm North of 60? A growing number of Canadian farmers want to give it a try

Reading Time: 11 minutes If you work dawn to dusk on the farm in Yukon Territory, that can make for 20-plus hours at this time of year as summer advances and it never really gets dark. Of course, agriculture isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when most of us think of this land of the midnight sun. […] Read more


More ‘Yukon gold’

Reading Time: 3 minutes Toursim and agriculture The Yukon government’s efforts to promote food raised and grown here also targets the 325,000 tourists who visit the territory every year, and new initiatives are now linking tourism and agriculture together. The whole aim is to give visitors a taste of the place, says Coralie Ullyet, project manager for Yukon Culinary […] Read more

“In your 60s, it’s about starting over,” says family coach Elaine Froese. “In your 70s it’s about legacy building, and in your 80s it’s being a wise mentor.”

Farm hobby

Non-farmers earn smiles and sometimes smirks when they move to the country to hobby farm, but their basic idea is sound. A hobby is great for all of us, especially as we age

Reading Time: 8 minutes It’s no surprise that active farmers say they don’t have time for hobbies or outside interests, especially if they’ve also got young families. But as the years go by, the price begins to show, both in quality of life and also — as more and more research shows — in the quality of your decision-making […] Read more