GFM Network News


Agricultural workers gather on Dec. 2, 2020, whilst blocking the Panamericana Sur highway at Villacuri, Peru, during a protest over a long-standing but controversial agrarian law. (Photo: Reuters/Sebastian Castaneda)

Peru farm protests grip country, turn deadly

'There are no harvests, there is nothing'

Reading Time: 2 minutes Lima | Reuters — Protests by farm workers demanding better wages in Peru raged on for a fourth day Thursday, spreading north into key agricultural areas of the Andean nation, derailing harvests of some crops, snarling transport of produce and leaving at least one dead. Peruvian interim President Francisco Sagasti called the death of a […] Read more

Wine grapes are seen hanging with remnants of smoke and ash at Hanson Vineyards at Woodburn, Oregon, about 45 km south of Portland, on Sept. 17, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Shannon Stapleton)

Charred U.S. west’s ‘wet ashtray’ wine grapes left to birds

Reading Time: 3 minutes Reuters — Heavy ground smoke clouded Hanson Vineyards in Oregon’s picturesque Willamette Valley for more than a week following a Labour Day windstorm that kicked up wildfires across the western United States. Jason Hanson expects his crews may only harvest five tons of grapes, including his Chardonnay and Gamay varieties, down from the 25 to […] Read more


Michele Manelli.

Michele Manelli — game changer in the world of wine

Here’s what happens when a young Italian abandons a flourishing financial career to “go farming”

Reading Time: 7 minutes I first met Michele Manelli two decades ago at Salcheto, the five-hectare vineyard he had recently bought. Nestled into a Tuscan hillside, at the end of a dirt road, it was billed as one of the finest parcels of land in the Montepulciano area, 250 kilometres northeast of Rome’s airport. The Salcheto story and his […] Read more

After growing up on a ranch in the BSE era, Echlin looked for a path that would give her much more control. That meant studying political science before starting to farm.

A different school

For Vance Lester and Sue Echlin, getting a non-agricultural education proved a big help when they returned to the farm

Reading Time: 6 minutes Graduate degrees in ecology and international relations don’t seem the kind of education that would be likely to help on a Canadian farm. But that’s where we might be wrong. For Sue Echlin and Vance Lester, that kind of schooling has been instrumental in their launching a fruit-growing and winery business, and in keeping it […] Read more


Chris Jentsch.

8 steps to go

Change Makers: Trail-blazers? mavericks? gamblers? Success for Chris and Betty Jentsch is all about winning at change

Reading Time: 10 minutes Harvest was wrapping up when I arrived in wine country. Up and down the valley, grape growers were breathing almost audible sighs of relief as final bins were hauled from the vineyard to crush. Seemingly overnight, the valley had shifted from the vibrant oranges, golds and deep purples of fall to the browns and greys […] Read more

(Dave Bedard photo)

World wine output seen at four-year low

Reading Time: 2 minutes Paris | Reuters –– Worldwide wine production is expected to fall this year to its lowest since 2012, chiefly due to adverse weather that sharply cut output in France and South America, wine body OIV estimated on Thursday. Global wine output is set to decrease by five per cent compared with last year to 259.5 […] Read more


Nova Scotia Finance Minister Randy Delorey lays out the budget for reporters Tuesday in Halifax. (NovaScotia.ca)

Nova Scotia pledges food donation tax credit in budget

Reading Time: 2 minutes A tax credit for Nova Scotia farmers who donate produce to local food banks is among the policy plans laid out in the province’s latest budget. Finance Minister Randy Delorey’s budget on Tuesday showed an overall $17.1 million net surplus position on $10.15 billion in total expenses and $10.26 billion in total revenues (minus $110.3 […] Read more

(Dave Bedard photo)

Bayer expects to compensate grape growers over crop damage

Reading Time: 2 minutes Zurich | Reuters — Bayer expects to pay wine growers compensation starting early next year after vineyards in Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and Switzerland reported 2015 crop damage possibly linked to one of the company’s fungicides. European grape growers reported deformed leaves and lower yields after using Bayer CropScience’s Moon Privilege, also known as […] Read more


mediterranean valley

The olive groves and vineyards of Liguria

Italy’s tiny farms are clinging to life as tenaciously as they cling to their hillsides. Now it appears they may have found their road to success

Reading Time: 7 minutes The road to the farm called I Cianelli runs out of the seaside resort of Andora, Italy, through the basil fields behind it. Narrow at first, the road curves up the stony hillside to a ledge overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, for it is here, from an impressive limestone house surrounded by native brush and olive […] Read more