GFM Network News


Health markets could boost food barley sales if Cigi's project succeeds.

A better way to mill barley?

Cigi investigates improved milling of food barley by blending it with wheat

Reading Time: 3 minutes The milling performance of Canadian food barley may be improved by blending it with wheat, opening up commercial potential for its use as a healthy ingredient. Funded by the Agriculture Funding Consortium, with food barley varieties supplied by the Alberta Barley Commission, a one-year project conducted by Cigi (Canadian International Grains Institute) is aiming to […] Read more

In search of a good label

On virtually every pesticide container, it’s written in big, bold letters, “Read the label and booklet before using.” My guess is almost no one complies, and with good reason

Reading Time: 4 minutes It can be a ridiculous request. Labels have become virtual novels. The label for the most widely used pesticide in Canada, glyphosate, can be over 100 pages long. If you tank mix glyphosate with another herbicide such as Pardner, add another 59 pages to your bedtime reading. Has anyone ever taken the time to read […] Read more


Agronomy project aims to raise yields 25 per cent

Complex project will study intensive systems approach to crop management

Reading Time: 5 minutes Sheri Strydhorst isn’t doing a lot of fishing this summer. And if her research bears out, you just might be willing to give it up, too. An agronomy research scientist with Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development in Barrhead, Strydhorst is leading an incredibly complex, multi-layered, multi-site, multi-crop research project designed to find out the extent […] Read more

After three years, if the return 
on investment is always positive, we adopt it whole farm.”
— Kristjan Hebert, Moosomin, Sask.

Fungicide question on wheat is settled

For these farmers, it’s every acre, every year… but always at the right crop stage

Reading Time: 8 minutes Kristjan Hebert knows exactly what his target is when he is spraying fungicide on his wheat. “One hundred per cent,” says the Moosomin, Sask.-area grain grower, who farms with his father. “Our goal is to get it all covered at the heading stage.” That’s a far cry from just a few years ago, when the […] Read more


Stem lesions are dirty white and usually dotted with numerous small, black pycnidia — the tiny dark specks.

Preserve blackleg resistance

Clip canola stems this harvest to check for blackleg in your fields

Reading Time: 5 minutes Blackleg has a way of sneaking up on you. A farm can go for years without any noticeable problems. But without the grower knowing, blackleg races within a field can shift — often in response to seeding the same genetic resistance source over and over — and infection starts to show up where it hadn’t […] Read more

Genetic sequencing technologies open doors for potato breeders

Next-generation technologies have ushered in a new era of potato breeding, 
allowing researchers to select key traits with a high degree of efficiency

Reading Time: 4 minutes The potato genome is a medium-size plant genome, consisting of 12 chromosomes with a haploid length of about 840 million base pairs. In 2011, it was successfully sequenced through the efforts of the Potato Genome Sequencing Consortium (PGSC), an initiative of the Netherlands Genomics Initiative and Wageningen University and Research Centre that combined the efforts […] Read more


The evolution of vertical tillage

It’s how you use your deep tiller that makes all the difference in crop performance

Reading Time: 7 minutes What’s vertical tillage? It seems like a simple three-word question, and you’d expect the answer to be just as straightforward. But no matter which farmer, equipment dealer or agronomist you ask, or how many times you ask them, you’re likely to get a different answer every time. In no small part that’s because the focus […] Read more

Brave new world of corn

It can feel like the glory days are over for corn, until you take a harder look

Reading Time: 7 minutes It’s easy enough to get pessimistic about corn these days. Just look at Chicago prices, or look at all the news reports from all around the world about the tremendous corn production potential of everywhere from Brazil to Ukraine. Or you could look closer to home, and get a dose of optimism. That’s what Ken […] Read more


Scott Sheppard, who farms near Selkirk, southeast of Simcoe, did a head-to-head comparison of 50 acres of IP soybeans and corn last season.

On the rebound

Higher premiums and strong global demand are rekindling interest in IP soybeans

Reading Time: 6 minutes Ask anyone involved in identity-preserved (IP) or non-GMO soybean trade, and there’s plenty to say in favour of Canada’s reputation abroad and its leadership in quality. Unfortunately, they’ll also tell you that it’s been a tough go in the past two or three years. Since 2010, as total soybean production in Canada has increased, the […] Read more

Lower prices are already encouraging growers to try new things.

The big change

It’s a safe bet that today’s tough market outlook is already fuelling the next big wave of farm innovation. But which innovation?

Reading Time: 9 minutes It wasn’t so long ago that the talk at farm meetings was of how everything was different this time. Demand would never fade. The emerging middle classes of the world’s developing nations were hungry and they were ready to pay. Plus, as if that wasn’t enough, new government policies in favour of biofuels had shot […] Read more