Clubroot, a soil borne disease, is not just a threat to Saskatchewan. It has been a problem in Alberta for about 15 years and is now established across the Prairies. It’s been found in Saskatchewan and symptoms of the disease have been detected in southern Manitoba and the Swan River Valley. | WP photo illustration

Time to get tough with rotations?

Ian Boxall says it’s time for producers and the canola industry to do something about clubroot. “Clubroot could be the biggest thing to happen in Saskatchewan. Loss of an industry? I don’t know what the word is,” said Boxall, who farms near Tisdale, Sask. Clubroot, a soil borne disease, is not just a threat to […] Read more

In experiments, when high loads of clubroot spores were present in controlled conditions, the crop height of clubroot-resistant canola cultivars declined and the crop produced less biomass.  |  Getty image

Less disease = more yield

Scientists often cringe when asked a speculative question. Not Gary Peng. He had an immediate answer to this question: how much would canola yields increase if all producers followed a three-year crop rotation? “If we could put in a two-year break between the canola, the benefit on reducing the pathogen inoculum (for blackleg and clubroot) […] Read more

Crop insurance says it needs direction on rotations

Saskatchewan Crop Insurance Corp. has the power to crack down on tight canola rotations by denying crop insurance to farmers who seed canola into canola stubble. However, it says it will use that hammer only if the Saskatchewan Canola Development Commission and other industry players are in agreement. “We want to work closely with industry. […] Read more


Manitoba now funds 15 new students each year, or 60 for the four year program, to study at the WCVM in Saskatoon. The province has proposed to reduce its seats at the WCVM to 10 new students per year, says Keri Hudson-Reykdal, a vet in Ashern, Man. | File photo

Manitoba rethinks vet college commitment

The Manitoba government may cut its funding to the Western College of Veterinary Medicine. Manitoba now funds 15 new students each year, or 60 for the four year program, to study at the WCVM in Saskatoon. The province has proposed to reduce its seats at the WCVM to 10 new students per year, says Keri […] Read more

Health Canada is sticking by its decision that glyphosate is unlikely to pose a cancer risk and isn't a concern to human health. | File photo

Health Canada confirms glyphosate safety

Health Canada is sticking by its decision that glyphosate is unlikely to pose a cancer risk and isn’t a concern to human health. In 2017, Health Canada released a re-evaluation decision on glyphosate, a weed killer commonly known by its trade name Roundup. At the time federal scientists concluded that “products containing glyphosate do not […] Read more


Leaders of provincial canola groups aren't pushing for a stick, to discourage the growing of back-to-back canola. It's not clear why, but it could be a distaste for regulations and penalties. | File photo

BLOG: Education not enough to encourage longer canola rotations

Last fall my eight-year-old daughter told me a story. It may be true, or partially true. We were walking to her school and she said the police were outside her school the day before. They entered a house across the road from the school, then brought out a man in handcuffs. Based on playground gossip, […] Read more

Anecdotal evidence seems to indicate that canola fields infested with flea beetles are more likely to suffer from blackleg. A researcher is planning an experiment to test this hypothesis.  |  Canola Council of Canada photo

Researcher studies flea beetle-blackleg link

Agriculture Canada scientist wonders if wounds from 
beetle feeding allow infection to take hold in canola plants

It’s a scientific fact — a cut on the skin, anywhere on a person’s body, increases the risk of infection. And before the invention of antibiotics, that infection could be deadly. Given the connection between a wound and disease, an Agriculture Canada scientist is wondering if there’s a similar relationship for canola plants. If a […] Read more

At the centre of regenerative ag is a belief that healthy soil reduces dependence on crop inputs.
 | File photo

The fifth revolution

BRANDON — In the early 1980s, zero tillage was just underway in Canada. A small band of progressive farmers had stopped tilling their land but the majority of growers were still turning the soil black. By 2011, everything changed. More than 56 percent of Canadian farmland was seeded without tillage and 25 percent was managed […] Read more


Resistant aphids are arriving from the United States, where producers are thought to be overusing pesticides. It’s a problem for Canadian growers because they have fewer options to control the pests.  |  University of Minnesota photo

Soybean aphids fight back

Soybean aphids are now resistant to insecticides in Manitoba. That’s not a problem in years like 2018, when there were little to no soybean aphids in Western Canada. But if there’s another year like 2017, when aphids were abundant, soybean growers could struggle to control the pests. “Failures of certain pyrethroid insecticides for management of […] Read more

A sign in support of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou is displayed outside of a British Columbia Supreme Court bail hearing for Meng last month. Meng’s arrest has raised tensions between Canada and China.  |  REUTERS/David Ryder photo

Ag trade expected to escape Huawei fallout

China reacted strongly when Canada honoured an extradition request from the U.S. but isn’t expected to stop imports


In the second week of November, a delegation of federal ministers and Chinese officials announced plans to double agricultural trade between Canada and China by 2025. That optimism now seems like ancient history. December was a horrific month for Canada-China relations and any talk of expanding exports, or a free trade deal, could be on […] Read more