Research by the Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence can play a key role in the growth of Canada’s beef sector.  |  File photo

Forage Centre of Excellence key to sector success

Alberta has set noble goals for cattle production: reduce winter feeding costs by 50 percent, reduce a cow herd’s environmental footprint by 15 percent and improve cow efficiency by 15 percent. Alberta Beef Producers recently outlined these and other relevant goals pertaining to the long-term sustainability of cattle production in Canada. The effort and clarity […] Read more

Farmers shouldn’t be hostage of investor groups

Everything is bigger in Texas, or so the saying goes. Holding true to the slogan is the influence of the Congregation of Benedictine Sisters of Boerne, Texas, on the board of McDonald’s Corp. The influence of the Congregation appears to be big enough to influence direction. A recent Drover’s article links a shareholder group that […] Read more

Science that fails to explain the impact on consumer safety, animal welfare or the environment contributes to skepticism.  |  File photo

Science must provide answers to consumer fears

It’s been speculated that consumers are losing faith in science, but maybe they are just seeking information that science doesn’t provide. Maybe we need to use science to ask better questions, which consumers help us define. To better connect with those who may be viewed as divergent, we need to encourage discussion and let the […] Read more

Food security about more than production

Feeding the world is a noble goal, especially when one in eight people go hungry every day. Food Banks of Canada reports a lower level of hunger in this country, but the numbers are rising. Nationally and worldwide, levels of hunger are a growing concern. In the face of these numbers, an easily conceived remedy […] Read more

If the board and staff are unaccountable to the membership, whose interests do they serve?

Member accountability key to group’s success

The world is run by those who show up. This phrase has been attributed to many individuals over the years and has become a rallying call for members of organizations to become engaged in the direction of that organization. Implicit is the assumption that individual engagement is the key to affecting the decisions made by […] Read more

Pastures play major role in carbon capture

Jose Graziano Da Silva, United Nations’ director general of the Food and Agriculture Organization, is a big believer in the importance of soil. “We need healthy soils to achieve our food security and nutrition goals, to fight climate change and to ensure overall sustainable development,” he said. “You can count on FAO’s commitment and active […] Read more

iSTOCK Illustration

Good ag policy helps make communities great

Agricultural policy is often labelled as bad if it reduces producers’ ability to carry out their chosen path of production and marketing. If bad agricultural policy can be easily identified, should it follow that good agricultural policy is the absence of bad policy? The answer might not be that clear. Good agricultural policy may be […] Read more

Producers are urged to participate in the new Canadian Beef Industry Sustainability Assessment.  |  File photo

Cattle industry must improve even as it booms

What a great time to have cattle to sell. Record smashing prices continue to appear, and even the most pessimistic producers are smiling. With the strong market providing continued profits and market signals continuing to fuel optimism, I wonder how the optimism will be translated into action? Will we forget the lessons learned in the […] Read more

Identifying the true market value of habitat maintenance will help increase farmers’ willingness to comply, says the author.  |  File photo

Habitat worth keeping is worth paying for

Agriculture policy is like pouring concrete. Planning, levelling and forming are important parts but can be modified as needed. However, once the concrete is poured and set, it’s a large, burdensome task to make major changes. Although I would like to take credit for this analogy, I cannot. The analogy is that of University of […] Read more

Canada between rock and hard place over COOL

Canada appears to be on the edge of unusual trade relation territory with the United States. Federal agriculture minister Gerry Ritz has said that Canada will impose tariffs on products imported from the U.S. as soon as he receives approval from the World Trade Organization. The tariffs will be imposed in retaliation to the U.S. […] Read more