GFM Network News


Tara Sawyer, centre, with husband Matt, right, and from left, Quin, Emmett and Cassidy.

At the edge

Five strategies that the new generation of farmers are embracing to take their farm businesses to the next level

Reading Time: 6 minutes “A wise person once said to me ‘if you don’t stretch, you don’t grow.’” That’s straight from Jake Ayre, the chair of Manitoba Young Farmers who crops 1,900 acres north of Minto together with his parents Heather and Andrew, sister Caitlin and an employee. It’s become his mantra, and a mission. “Be open-minded and try […] Read more

Cervus to expand Saskatchewan reach

Deere chain announces Nipawin shop, Farm At Hand tie-in

Reading Time: 2 minutes Deere farm equipment dealer chain Cervus Equipment is set to expand its reach in northeastern Saskatchewan next month. Calgary-based Cervus — which operates 21 Deere dealerships in Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia along with 42 other machinery dealerships in Canada, Australia and New Zealand — announced Thursday it plans to have a new dealership open […] Read more


Choosing a growth strategy that is aligned with your overall business goals is a good first step to get you started.

You want to grow your farm business. But how?

Next Steps: These tools are a mix of business theory and practical on-farm wisdom, which is why they’ll help you find opportunities

Reading Time: 7 minutes In January’s column we looked at how the process of business strategy planning helps orient you on the goals map. But that still leaves a big question: How do you get there? If you’re an existing farm, this means developing a growth strategy. In 1957, Igor Ansoff, known as the father of strategic management, established […] Read more

Finding people you trust in order to build good working relationships doesn’t happen overnight, so start building your team as soon as possible.

Want a super farm business? Build your ‘superteam’

Top tips from the frontline on creating and optimizing a business management team for your farm

Reading Time: 6 minutes The words can be heard all across the country. “Our accountant, lawyer and bank manager are key players in decision-making on our farm,” says Luanne Lynn, who is currently past president of Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers Program (she and husband Philip were Outstanding Young Farmers in 2005). The Lynns have a cash crop operation in […] Read more


Terry and father Harry Aberhart find their advisory team widens their management options.

A farm advisory team that works — for you

Advisors can help take the emotion out of business decisions

Reading Time: 8 minutes A few years ago, Harvey Aberhart came to a family farm meeting looking stressed out. Like many farmers across the country, he wanted the family to find their way to a healthy, forward-looking succession plan, but the night before the meeting, he had been kept up all through the early hours by thoughts of a […] Read more

AGI buys ag business management software muscle

Reading Time: 2 minutes Grain handling equipment maker Ag Growth Industries (AGI) plans to level up on its SureTrack farm management software platform with a deal for another Canadian player in the same business. Winnipeg-based AGI announced Thursday it has bought all outstanding shares in Oakville, Ont.-based Affinity Management Ltd., developer of the Compass brand of farm and agribusiness […] Read more


Even in this digital era, it's still important to build a good relationship between you and your advisor.

Get more from your farm advisors

Boost the returns from your investment in advisors’ fees with these tactics

Reading Time: 5 minutes Hiring business advisors and consultants is becoming a top habit on Canada’s most profitable farms, as identified in Farm Management Canada’s Dollars and Sense study. Whether it’s in accounting, law, human resources, succession planning, agronomy, livestock nutrition, communications or marketing, advisors are filling in the gaps in the farm team’s expertise. It turns out, though, […] Read more

The quality and quantity of the data collected saw clear patterns in the behaviour of the most successful farmers.

Seven strategies of successful farmers

Here’s new evidence that business skills increase farm income, no matter what size the farm

Reading Time: 5 minutes With the harvest finally in the bin, farmers across the country are evaluating their farm management practices and they are making management decisions for the future. Business management skills are more important than ever as farmers face huge challenges, including unpredictable weather, volatile markets, labour shortages, succession, and much more. In this environment, a great […] Read more


Research proves it. The more digital your business becomes, the more important soft skills are to your success.

The skills you’ll need as farms become more digital

Technology is transforming agriculture at a speed we hardly grasp. Will yours be among the farms that emerge stronger?

Reading Time: 5 minutes In October, Country Guide covered the report “Farmer 4.0: How the Coming Skills Revolution Can Transform Agriculture” published by RBC, with its emphasis on how the era of super-automation will change how we farm. “As Canadian farmers leave traditional tasks to smart machines, and focus on strategy and systems, they’ll be better positioned than ever […] Read more

A business whose culture doesn’t support the values of its employees will ultimately struggle.

Farm CEO: Culture matters

Are you paying attention to the culture of your farm or farm business?

Reading Time: 3 minutes Why should we care about the culture of our business? Culture captures the essence of what makes a business tick, yet it is poorly understood. Culture has reached cliché status as a management concept, and that’s regrettable because understanding what culture really is, its connection to leadership, how it is created and how it has […] Read more