GFM Network News


Since the WGRF’s inception in 1981, it has helped develop hundreds of wheat and barley varieties.

Take a new look at the Western Grain Research Foundation

The organization is ready to embark on the next 40 years of funding vital crop and agronomic research to benefit western Canadian growers

Reading Time: 5 minutes When you do a job well for a long time, it can sometimes go unnoticed — people simply get used it. That’s why every once in a while it’s good to take a step back and see things with fresh eyes. Agricultural research, for instance — just gets done. New varieties come out regularly, new […] Read more

CN, CP roll over revenue caps for 2016-17

Reading Time: 2 minutes Canada’s big two railways have both overshot the maximum revenue they’re allowed to keep for ferrying the 2016-17 grain crop off the Prairies. The Canadian Transportation Agency on Thursday issued its annual determination of how much, if any, revenue Canadian National Railway (CN) and Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) made over their maximum grain revenue entitlements […] Read more


Linda Hall is looking for the right combination of variety choice and agronomic practices to make oats more attractive to growers in central Alberta.

The Catch-22 of oat production

Tests in central Alberta yield some useful information on N rates and the effectiveness of plant growth regulators

Reading Time: 4 minutes Linda Hall has a soft spot for the humble oat, mainly because she doesn’t think it’s really all that humble. “Milling oats are a high-value crop,” Hall says. “We’re seeing companies like Richardson buying up oat milling capacity, so the markets are there if we can grow the right kind of oat.” It all depends […] Read more

Prairie wheat commissions to collaborate on research funding

Reading Time: 2 minutes The Prairie provinces’ three wheat commissions are set to take a team approach to research funding through a new not-for-profit body. The Alberta Wheat Commission, Sask Wheat and the Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers Association on Tuesday announced the formation of the Canadian Wheat Research Coalition (CWRC) to “facilitate long-term investments aimed at improving profitability […] Read more


Wheat being inoculated with fusarium at Western Canada’s largest fusarium “nursery” at Carman, Man.

A genetic solution to fusarium?

Across the country, several researchers are studying fusarium from every angle, from pathology to agronomy

Reading Time: 4 minutes In the early ’90s, farmers in the eastern Prairies started to ask questions about odd white “tombstone” wheat kernels. When they received the answer, some wondered whether the name would refer to the tombstone on the grave of the wheat business, especially when there was a huge outbreak in Manitoba in 1993. Near-panic ensued, as […] Read more

CP, CN both top their Prairie grain revenue caps

Reading Time: 2 minutes The Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF) can soon expect a late gift of over $4.4 million in surplus Prairie grain freight revenue, according to a new ruling from the Canadian Transportation Agency. The agency said Dec. 22 it has determined Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) and Canadian National Railway (CN) went over their maximum revenue entitlements […] Read more


PAMI researchers placed shatter-loss collection pans throughout the fields along the width of the headers. The contents were cleaned and weighed to find out where losses were occurring.

Shatter losses in straight-cut canola

PAMI research funded by WGRF shows that the type of header makes a difference

Reading Time: 5 minutes Halfway through a study examining the role that harvest equipment plays in shatter losses when straight-cutting canola, Nathan Gregg is noticing some trends. “We saw higher losses out at the edges of headers,” says Gregg, a project manager with the Prairie Agricultural Machinery Institute (PAMI) in Humboldt, Sask. “And losses dropped off as you moved […] Read more

CN to challenge latest grain revenue penalty

Reading Time: 3 minutes Ordered to hand over more than $7 million in Prairie grain handling revenue and related fines for the 2014-15 crop year, Canadian National Railway now plans to challenge the bill in court. Montreal-based CN on Monday filed in the Federal Court of Appeal, seeking leave to appeal the Canadian Transportation Agency’s (CTA) Dec. 29 finding […] Read more


Minogue: Wanna start a cereal seed company?

Reading Time: 3 minutes It’s clear from where the Prairies’ cereal growers’ groups sit that it’s time for farmers to get more involved in wheat and barley breeding — and they have a new report in hand suggesting ways to do so. Options in the report, from the newly-formed Wheat and Barley Variety Working Group, range from improving the […] Read more

Maria DeRosa has developed a DON test using aptamers, which are synthetic pieces of DNA.

Mycotoxin detection may get even simpler, cheaper

WGRF-funded research produces test that can detect fusarium toxins at the elevator

Reading Time: 4 minutes It’s a typical kind of research story,” says Maria DeRosa with a knowing laugh. “Something doesn’t quite work and you think, oh no! This isn’t what I anticipated. But then it turns into an opportunity you hadn’t thought of before.” She’s right, of course. Science is littered with stories of successful accidents, and for DeRosa, […] Read more