The Port of Los Angeles and the port at Long Beach, California, account for 40 percent of all U.S. imports by ship. | Reuters/Mike Blake photo

L.A. port goes 24/7 to fight backlog

Clogged state of North American ports has outraged farmers as exports are delayed and containers remain hard to find

The United States government has aggressively moved to unclog a backlog of ships and containers out of U.S. ports. While farmers will benefit, it was the pain being felt by American consumers, and fear of a widespread Christmas grinching because many products would not be deliverable by Christmas, that drove U.S. President Joe Biden to […] Read more

There are easily available ways farmers can lock in November 2022 prices that leave them essentially free from risk, while securing prices for crops that are still near historic highs. | File photo

Do not neglect options in forward-pricing decisions

Today’s market should tempt farmers to lock in prices for some of the 2022-23 crop. Instead, last year’s experience is tempting thousands of growers to avoid pricing anything until the entire crop is in the bin a year from now. It’s understandable that farmers don’t want to expose themselves to nightmarish contract shortfalls that have […] Read more

Gord Penner, head agronomist of Kroeker Farms, hopes more information about his company’s potato fields will help it further boost production, stability and long-term viability. | Ed White photo

Drought helps farm measure water impact

Improving the Prairie: Research helps Man. potato farm compare conventional and organic effects on soil and water


Editor’s note: This story is part of an ongoing series that looks at how many farmers are attempting to preserve their soil while increasing profits. Farmers are always running real-world experiments. In crop production systems where a complex rotation, customized management, volatile prairie weather and changing technology are constantly challenging farmers, nobody is short on […] Read more


U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, seen here testifying before the Senate finance committee in May, said in a recent speech that the government remains concerned over what she called China’s “state-centric and non-market trade practices.” | Reuters/Pete Marovich photo

Chinese trade practices still concern for U.S.

U.S. Trade Representative says former administration’s policies will remain in place but also vows to apply more pressure

The United States plans to keep pressure on China to conform to world trading standards. However, in an Oct. 4 speech, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai offered few details on how she thinks China can be forced to change. “It is increasingly clear China’s plans do not include meaningful reforms to address the concerns that […] Read more

Canadian National Railway is reducing costs to stave off an investor revolt while Canadian Pacific Railway faces significant debt after buying Kansas City Southern. It is a potentially dangerous situation for shippers such as grain growers. | File photo

Farmers face impact of cost-cutting at country’s railways

Editor’s Note: This column should have noted that the CP takeover of KCS has not been completed and isn’t expected to receive regulatory approval until the second half of 2022. Until approval, the two companies will continue to operate separately. Canada’s two main railways, Canadian National Railway and Canadian Pacific Railway, hauled a lot of […] Read more


The main drain channel runs through Les Felsch’s farm in Manitoba’s Red River Valley. He and researchers want to know more about the water and nutrients that flow off the land. | Ed White photo

Sustainability called evolution, not quick cure

Improving the Prairie: Farmer tries to figure out how to to get water off his land while keeping nutrients in his fields

Editor’s note: This story is part of an ongoing series that looks at how many farmers are attempting to preserve their soil while increasing profits. EMERSON, Man. — When it rains hard around here, the flat, clay soil can hold the water like a pan. It’s rich farmland, but flooding is a perennial issue, and […] Read more

Large operators sell their used equipment to help finance future technology improvements but they need enough medium-sized operations to buy it. | File photo

Who is left to buy the used iron?

Large farms face a problem as small-to-medium sized farms disappear, according to a new analysis paper from Agri-Food Economic Systems. Large operators sell their used equipment to help finance future technology improvements but they need enough medium-sized operations to buy it. “Wide swaths of farms are being left behind… in the wake of rapid growth […] Read more

Police officers and security personnel gather outside the headquarters of China Evergrande Group in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, China, on Sept. 30, 2021. | Reuters/Aly Song photo

Chinese market bounce sends waves through Canadian ag

The looming bankruptcy of a Chinese property developer might not seem to amount to a hill of soybeans, but what happens to Evergrande Group, and all that could follow, might mean a heck of a lot to all Canadian crop and livestock prices. Regardless of low world supplies of many crops, including canola, a bad […] Read more


Sean Smith thinks producing more from the same land base requires a more intensive approach to grazing, forage production and cow management. | Ed White photo

Farm diversifies while improving environment

Improving the Prairies: Sustainable farm cuts costs, boosts margins with strategic changes to planning and operations

Editor’s note: This story is part of an ongoing series that looks at how many farmers are attempting to preserve their land, water and habitat while increasing profits. CLANWILLIAM, Man. — Something is making the forages grow better on the Smith farm this year, despite the drought: a lack of wire worms. After a couple […] Read more

Former diplomat Michael Kovrig, his wife Vina Nadjibulla and sister Ariana Botha react following his arrival on a Canadian military plane at Pearson International Airport in Toronto. | Reuters/Chris Helgren photo

Canada can get back to business, carefully, with China

Now that the Meng-Michaels swap has taken place, is everything back to normal with China? That’s going to occupy the minds of an awful lot of Canadian farmers, agriculture industry people and food folk as we walk past the epic three-year diplomatic crisis with China. Figuring that out will take a long time. It’s hard […] Read more