GFM Network News


Advertising would have you believe flavoured water beverages are just the thing you need for your health. But are they?

Guide Health: Fortified water – a good thing or not?

Many of these drinks may make sense for pro football players, but not the rest of us

Undoubtedly you will have seen the rows of fortified and flavoured water drinks in just about any store, as well as energy and sports water products too. According to the advertising, these beverages are just the thing you need for your health. But are they? Canada’s Food Guide has recently been updated, and it recommends […] Read more

For Ontario’s Larmer family, on-farm child care is a safety, economic and educational issue. But, says DFRFR co-ordinator Katelyn, even successful programs, are under pressure.

Teeter totter

Farming parents need accessible, high-quality child care for their children. Can they get it?

When Donalee Jones and Scott Mowbray returned to their home town and began farming near Cartwright, Man., in 2008, the couple assumed that when things got busy, the family that they planned to have one day could easily be looked after by Scott’s parents, who lived on the yard of the Mowbray’s 2,000-acre grain farm. […] Read more


“Creative thinking is like a muscle that needs to be flexed on a regular basis in order to remain strong. The more you flex it, the more you are able to problem solve on a daily basis and the higher your level of creativity.

How to strengthen your creativity muscle

Yes, you can become more creative, and more nimble as well. Then, both will help you meet the challenges you’ll face in 2019

Every recent study on the future of work seems to highlight the growing need for creative thinking skills. With the fast pace of change, business leaders are telling us that a foundation in business basics is no longer enough. Soft skills like creativity and creative problem solving will be essential for adapting to the ever-changing […] Read more

There’s no point in faking empathy as people are keen to the signs if a person is being insincere.

The good news on empathy

Empathy is becoming even more important in our disconnected world. Now, new research shows how we can all get better at relating

We tend to live immersed in bubbles made up of people who look like us, think like us, and behave like us. And it’s getting worse. As more and more of our communications move to the digital world, we become increasingly detached from one another and unable to appreciate another’s viewpoint if different from our […] Read more


Employees are looking for a role, not just a job, says Curwen, in cap, front row, right.

Grow your people

On a global tour, Nuffield Scholar Reece Curwen finds the top farms always treat employees as an investment, not a cost

At 32, Reece Curwen farms with his family 500 kilometres south of Perth in Western Australia, where the farm produces canola, barley, wheat and sheep on 8,000 hectares. Yet although the farm is so geographically distant from Canada, when it comes to the people management side of farming, it might be right next door. As […] Read more

“We’re not able to eliminate the stresses that farmers experience but we can help them build their resilience.” – Dr. Andria Jones-Bitton, University of Guelph.

Admitting you have a mental health problem

Learn to look in the mirror… really look. Dealing with stress and anxiety may never be easy, but it helps if you’re alert for these warning signs

For several years, Wayne Black couldn’t see what was happening. He drove himself to be better as a farmer and then, when he became a sales manager at a central Ontario farm input dealership, he was always striving for the highest results for his customers. But early in 2018, he began to notice that he […] Read more


You don’t have to accept hearing loss as simply part of aging. Therapies and devices such as hearing aids have come a long way.

Guide Health: Hearing loss – listen to this!

Too many of us mistakenly believe that hearing loss is an inescapable part of the aging process

Anywhere from 20 to 50 per cent of Canadians report some degree of hearing loss, with the higher numbers being among seniors. A great many of these people accept diminished hearing as part of aging, or alternatively do not realize that they do not hear as they once did. Often, it is actually a different […] Read more

Learning styles

Everyone learns their own way. So what’s best for you and your team?

We’re told there has never been a time in all of human history when things have changed at such a rapid pace. And this is especially true for agriculture. Nor are farmers just letting it happen. Instead, they’re embracing lifelong learning to prepare and to adapt, whether it’s learning new software programs, farm business management […] Read more


Sometimes a simple “thank you” can be enough to let a worker know they're appreciated.

Reward positive behaviour

HR Management: If something is supposed to be a reward, it has to feel like one

With a tight labour market, farmers are looking for ways to attract and keep good employees. They naturally turn to incentives and rewards to try to keep employees happy and productive. However, getting it right when it comes to employee incentives is tricky business. “An incentive to one person can be poison to another,” explains […] Read more

Fibre is found mainly in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.

Guide Health: Are you getting enough dietary fibre?

Start slowly — adding too much fibre too fast will result in adverse effects

You know that fibre is an important part of your diet, but do you get enough? Daily recommendations vary from 25 to 30 grams of fibre, with older people and women needing even more. A penny weighs about a gram, so that’s about 25 to 30 pennies in weight. (I suspect you can remember pennies!) […] Read more