GFM Network News


(CPR.ca)

CP, Kansas City lock in new deal as CN steps out

More efficient flow of grain, perishables, machinery parts touted

Reading Time: 3 minutes Canadian Pacific Railway and U.S. railway Kansas City Southern on Wednesday again formalized their engagement after competing suitor Canadian National Railway walked away from the table. CP and KCS, which reported “unanimous” support from both companies’ boards, have entered a merger agreement committing CP to pay about $31 billion in cash and stock, or about […] Read more

Rail shipping is vital to the Canadian economy and especially important to Prairie farmers.

Rolling coal on the rails

If Alberta approves new coal mines, how will we ship our grains to the West Coast?

Reading Time: 7 minutes The coal question is one that should be on the mind of every western Canadian grain producer, and one that every farm organization should be asking right now. It is a question that every federal, provincial and local politician representing rural ridings should be asking.  Unfortunately, I don’t know of anyone who is asking it. […] Read more


(Dave Bedard photo)

Federal work/rest rules to be updated for railway workers

More clarifications coming, Teamsters say

Reading Time: 3 minutes A perennial sticking point in work stoppages and labour disputes at Canada’s two major railways is expected to be at least somewhat addressed within the next two and a half years. Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau on Nov. 25 announced what’s billed as the first updates to the Duty/Rest Rules for Railway Operating Employees since […] Read more

Smoke rises from the site of burning railcars at a CP derailment near Guernsey, Sask., on Feb. 6, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Nayan Sthankiya)

New rail speed limits to be based on temperatures

Railways wanting to run under new limits must develop winter operation plans

Reading Time: 3 minutes Given the odds of weird temperature swings happening somewhere in Canada at any time of year, railways will now instead be required to slow their trains’ speeds based on how cold it is outside at the time, rather than a date range. Federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau on Friday announced a new ministerial order meant […] Read more


(PortOfThunderBay.com)

Grain exports continue strong out of Thunder Bay

COVID-19 leads to increased demand, reduced oil traffic by rail

Reading Time: < 1 minute MarketsFarm — The Port of Thunder Bay reported another strong grain handling month in May, as more than 1.1 million tonnes of Canadian grain and oilseeds moved through the harbour on the northern shores of Lake Superior during the month. Increased demand from many countries stockpiling grain amidst the global COVID-19 pandemic was cited as […] Read more

(File photo by Dave Bedard)

Fuel, labour to pull grain freight cost indices lower

CP's share buybacks also a factor in its VRCPI

Reading Time: 2 minutes The numbers that decide how much revenue Canada’s big two railways get to keep from Prairie grain handling have been marked downward for the 2020-21 crop year. The Canadian Transportation Agency last week announced it will set the volume-related composite price index (VRCPI) at 1.4202 for Canadian National Railway (CN) and at 1.4205 for Canadian […] Read more


(PortOfHalifax.ca)

Ottawa expected to ‘officially’ declare ag an essential service

The Western Grain Elevator Association says that designation will clarify things and help to keep grain moving

Reading Time: 3 minutes Canada’s grain industry expects the federal government will soon officially declare agriculture an essential service. Wade Sobkowich, executive director of the Western Grain Elevator Association (WGEA), says that designation will have a practical application. “Hopefully it ends all confusion about grain workers at elevators, railway workers and anybody else required for moving grain, as to […] Read more

Smoke rises from the site of burning railcars at a CP derailment near Guernsey, Sask., on Feb. 6, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Nayan Sthankiya)

Garneau re-adjusts train speed limits

New limits in place for 'key trains' with dangerous goods

Reading Time: 2 minutes Having cut speed limits for trains hauling dangerous goods following a fiery derailment earlier this month, federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau is adjusting those limits for a “more targeted” approach. Garneau announced Sunday he has pulled his Feb. 6 ministerial order on speed limits and replaced it with a new one affecting so-called “key trains” […] Read more


(File photo by Dave Bedard)

Prairie grain freight cost index adjusted upward

Reading Time: 2 minutes Corrected, May 6, 2019 and Jan. 7, 2021 — Canada’s big two railways can expect a small raise in the amount of revenue they get to keep from hauling Prairie grain in the coming crop year. The Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) on Tuesday announced it will set the volume-related composite price index (VRCPI) at 1.4371 […] Read more

(File photo by Dave Bedard)

Railways ration space as commodity congestion problems worsen

Reading Time: 3 minutes Winnipeg | Reuters — Canada’s two major railways are rationing space on trains traveling to the country’s biggest port and recently prioritized some commodities over others to deal with congestion, the latest indication of their struggle to meet demand from new trade deals. That move prompted Canada’s transport regulator last week to start an investigation […] Read more