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The Van Haren family, including Roger, left, Katelyn holding George, Judy, and Erwin holding Brianna, raise bison because of the animals’ self-sufficiency.  |  Maria Johnson photo

Alta. bison farm chooses to work with nature

Handling is kept to a minimum but family must provide sufficient feed and minerals and assure a steady water supply

LACOMBE, Alta. — Visiting Frontier Farm makes it understandable why the Van Haren family — Erwin and Judy, and their son, Roger, and his wife, Katelyn — raise bison. “They take care of themselves,” says Roger. Adds Judy with a bit of a smile: “We handle them with binoculars and a hockey stick with a […] Read more

Canadian beef exports add at least $600 per head in value, compared to the domestic market, and numbers show that trade is accelerating.
 | File photo

Exports worth $600 per head

Canadian beef exports add at least $600 per head in value, compared to the domestic market, and numbers show that trade is accelerating. Deals like the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership push down tariffs and open doors to high value markets like Japan. “There has been triple the volume of beef that has […] Read more

Ram sperm frozen for 50 years has been awakened to impregnate 34 ewes in Australia. | File photo

Old ram sperm found to be as good as fresh

Ram sperm frozen for 50 years has been awakened to impregnate 34 ewes in Australia. Researchers from the University of Sydney have thus concluded that artificial insemination using the world’s oldest known viable semen has a successful impregnation rate in sheep equivalent to recently frozen samples. Associate professor Simon de Graaf and Jessica Rickard used […] Read more


The 17 percent reduction in pregnant mares’ urine production will affect four ranches in Manitoba and one in Saskatchewan.  |  Brenda Hunter photo

PMU ranchers feel pinch as cuts announced

The company that contracts pregnant mares’ urine reduces the number of ranches from which it will buy product

Pfizer Canada’s cuts to pregnant mares’ urine production will force four Manitoba ranches and one Saskatchewan ranch out of the industry. The 17 percent reduction translates into 33,000 grams of estrogen. Ranchers are paid per gram of estrogen and not on the volume of urine produced. The reduction affects three ranches in southwestern Manitoba, one […] Read more

Making improvements to chutes and corrals is one of the ways that cattle producers can make their operations more efficient and economical.  |  File photo

Ways to save time and labour in cow-calf operations

Time and labour are often in short supply at cow-calf operations, but there are ways producers can save both, while also saving a bit of money. Drones should be used on most larger operations for checking cattle, checking fences, checking watering troughs, finding lost cattle and identifying sick ones. Drones are quick and the images […] Read more


U.S. beef exporters fear declining sales to Japanese market

NEW ORLEANS, La. — The U.S. beef sector exported about US$8.25 billion worth of beef last year and the industry has high hopes for continued growth. Trade agreements remove duties and non-tariff barriers so favourable deals are needed, said Kent Bacus, trade policy director for the U.S. National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. “Customers want our beef […] Read more

Beef industry faces cultural challenges in new markets

Consumers around the world have different cultural and dietary tastes and it will be a challenge to meet those needs

HOUSTON, Texas — Meeting demands of consumers with different cultural and dietary tastes could be the next challenge facing beef-producing nations. Major beef exports come from United States, Australia, Canada and Brazil yet the greatest demand is in Southeast Asia and the Middle East, where beef is probably a luxury item and may only be […] Read more



Stefon and Rebecca Beechinor of Bentley, Alta., and partner JNR Farms of Willingdon, Alta., sold a 15-month-old Simmental bull named BLL Kalibre 762E for $275,000 to Christel and Steve Humbke and Ken and Carol Warkentin and of Starwest Farms, who own Starwest Farms and have farms at Calmar, Alta., and Chilliwack, B.C. 
 |  Stefon Beechinor photo

Two bulls hit price stratosphere

(Editor’s note: This story has been corrected from an original version.) It was – 40 C on Feb. 25 when the Beechinor family prepared for their seventh bull sale. They never imagined that the pace of their sale would be so hot. Stefon and Rebecca Beechinor of Bentley, Alta., and partner JNR Farms of Willingdon, […] Read more

World Pork Expo, held each June in Des Moines, hosts about 20,000 visitors over three days, including individuals and exhibitors from ASF positive regions. | Screencap via worldpork.org

World Pork Expo cancelled due to African swine fever

The National Pork Producers Council in the United States has cancelled the World Pork Expo planned for June in Des Moines, Iowa, because of fears of spreading African swine fever. The council’s board of directors took the unprecedented move in recognition that ASF continues to spread in China and other parts of Asia, as well […] Read more