GFM Network News


IT firms are seeing the potential in agri-food technology and are buying companies or bringing in talent.

Investing in agri-food technology

“A very dismal state of affairs” is how one investor looks at Canada’s ag tech future

San Eng thinks the agri-food technology investment climate in Canada might improve, but a “venture capital ecosystem” must develop quickly or the nation will lose out. “The people I’ve talked to are overlooking the sector — they don’t think it’s sexy enough, which is disappointing because the potential is there,” says the serial entrepreneur who […] Read more

“For people small and starting out, you have to have relationships,” Ray Price says. “Whether it’s family, friends, bankers or workers… you have to find places to have relationships.”

The look of leadership

Known for Sunterra’s bold, future-looking moves, what traits does Ray Price see in the farmers he thinks can up their game for the 2020s?

If Japan starts handing out honourary citizenships, you better believe Ray Price will be on their short list. Already, the Alberta-born farm boy has been to the Land of the Rising Sun more than 100 times representing Sunterra, the Price family’s storied, successful and diversified business. The Prices export a majority of their pork directly […] Read more


Farmers in management groups have a 43 per cent higher operating profit, 2.2 per cent higher return on assets, and higher net worth. – VIA Research

The peer-to-peer choice

Why are more farmers joining peer-to-peer farm management and benchmarking clubs? Because it pays

Farmers are hearing more and more about peer farming groups. Maybe you even know someone personally who’s a member. That wouldn’t be surprising as these farm business management groups are growing in number across the country. They come in many shapes and sizes, but have some traits in common as well, and all share the […] Read more

Performance management pays off, says a University of Guelph associate professor. “Research shows it can improve employee performance, productivity and safety.”

The annual performance review

Does it really make sense to put employees and team members through a performance appraisal?

You’re busy, of course, so finding an excuse for not doing annual performance evaluations with employees and team members looks so very tempting. Would it really be so bad if you pushed the reviews onto the back burner? The answer is an unequivocal “yes,” according to Dr. Sara Mann, an associate professor specializing in human […] Read more


Six traits of highly effective leadership

If we want to generate a higher return on investment (ROI) on our leadership, describing how leadership can be developed and characterizing why leadership is effective are all well and good, but what do highly effective leaders do? How do they behave? What fundamental abilities do they possess that enable them to achieve the kind[...]
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“HR tends to get put on the back burner,” says Jennifer Doelman.

Get professional with your HR

The Doelman family is finding their HR plan is an essential pillar for their farm’s success. You may too

With the current shortage of good labour in the ag industry, putting more effort into HR planning can help you keep your staff, thereby saving the cost and aggravation of recruiting and training new people — if you can find them. Hiring new staff is worse than dating, says Jennifer Doelman, who farms with her[...]
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Selling sales

When schools look down on sales, marketing and personal skills, you the farmer lose as much as the students

Ask most recruiters or human resource professionals working in ag today and they will tell you there is a growing gap between the skills needed to perform key roles in agribusiness and the skills that high school, college or university students can bring to the job. Lori Litherland, founder of agricultural recruiter Litherland and Company,[...]
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Tom Button is editor of Country Guide magazine.

Editor’s Note: Be it resolved…

We’re heading into another meeting season, and here’s a topic that’s actually worth making a resolution out of and standing up to move. Clearly, there won’t be progress if you don’t

Obviously, you don’t have to get very far away from the farm to lose sight of the fact that the real energy that’s driving agriculture isn’t some GMO breakthrough, or some new chemical innovation or even some amazingly brilliant bit of electronic engineering. Nor is it the price of grain, or the value of the[...]
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A detailed list of requirements will help ensure that you hire the right person for the job.

Job descriptions

Two farm specialists build the case to prove why job descriptions will save you time, money and aggravation

Are job descriptions worth the effort? Simply put, the experts say the answer is a clear yes. Or maybe we should make that YES! Job descriptions are foundational for good management, says Jade Reeve, manager of agri-jobs at the Canadian Agricultural Human Resources Council (CAHRC) in Ottawa. Their usefulness goes beyond recruitment, she adds. “They[...]
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JBS shareholder Batista arrested in food sector corruption investigation

Rio de Janeiro | Reuters – Brazilian police arrested one of the controlling shareholders of meatpacker JBS SA on Friday in connection with an ongoing police inquiry into illegal campaign contributions while a local news outlet reported two former agriculture ministers were also arrested. A member of JBS’ controlling family Joesley Batista is expected only to[...]
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