GFM Network News


“I’m not sure the message is getting through,” says CFIB’s Corinne Pohlmann. But the stats are brutal… 70 per cent of businesses that don’t plan for succession end up failing.

Sharing succession stories

What can farmers learn from the transition struggles of Canada’s other independent, family-based businesses?

Reading Time: 5 minutes From a business perspective, whether it’s a family business, a family farm business or any other kind, succession planning is not only smart, it’s a condition of survival. According to the Family Business Institute for example, after the leader of a family business exits the picture for whatever reason, 70 per cent of these enterprises […] Read more

From left, the G.H. VanSickle & Sons farm team: Jake, Peter, Shawn and Josh.

Seamless transfers

This family farm corporation in Ontario has transferred four times since the ’60s and recently diversified with the purchase of a local grain elevator. Here’s how the VanSickles have done it, and the lessons they’ve learned along the way

Reading Time: 6 minutes Near the Grand River south of Brantford, Shawn VanSickle pulls under the shade of a big oak tree at the end of the field. He stops for a moment to reflect about how in 1966 his grandfather did something groundbreaking for the time — incorporated the family farm. Five decades later, G.H. VanSickle & Sons […] Read more


Alec and Shelby Boekhoven farm with Alec’s parents near Appin in southwestern Ontario.

The next farm generation steps up

On this farm, transition planning made real gains once the younger generation learned how to take their role in the process

Reading Time: 11 minutes Alec Boekhoven had turned over at 2 a.m., fretting about ways to reduce feed costs on his family’s 600-sow farrow-to-finish operation. Eventually he drifted off on the couch, which is where his son Evan discovered him and woke him up early. It’s why Alec brought his three-year-old with him to do chores, and it also […] Read more

In the family’s new pack barn, daughter Cate McCorquodale is experiencing their transition planning partly from her perspective as a lawyer. “It takes time to get all the pieces in place,” she says. “It’s not just about transferring ownership.”

Legal insights into transition planning

Today it’s getting even more critical to keep up with your legal documents all through your business planning and succession discussions

Reading Time: 9 minutes At 45,000 sq. feet the new dairy pack barn is impressive, especially the way it captures the spirit of hope that fills the McCorquodale family at Embro, Ont. With the next generation waiting in the wings, their barn represents their shared belief in their future, complete with robotic milking system and the latest in cow-comfort […] Read more