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Durum has been at the centre of recent trade tensions between Canada and Italy, but the president of Cereals Canada doesn’t believe the problem is insurmountable.  |  File photo

Canada, Italy can fix their differences

Canadians and Italians like each other. Italian culture has formed a deep part of the Canadian fabric, and Canadians buy hundreds of millions of dollars of goods from Italy every year. However, there have been some hiccups recently in the trade relationship between Canada and Italy, highlighted by the protectionist measures being used to block […] Read more

Rail companies are regulated with maximum revenue entitlements on grain transportation, in part because there are only two major carriers, so farmers are justified in seeking to know how much it actually costs to move their grain.
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Shelving rail costing review puts gov’t on wrong track

It’s puzzling that both the governing Liberals and the Conservative government before them have avoided a full costing analysis for moving grain by rail. Rail companies are regulated with maximum revenue entitlements on grain transportation, in part because there are only two major carriers, so farmers are justified in seeking to know how much it […] Read more

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Protect yourself from scammers pretending to be CRA

Have you received a phone call from someone claiming to be with the Canada Revenue Agency demanding payment? Have you received an email from the CRA requesting personal information, such as your social insurance number or driver’s licence? Maybe they even said you were eligible for a refund? If you provided information, you may have […] Read more


Culture shift is difficult, but ag has shown it is possible

I’ve been noticing a significant culture shift within the industry lately, one that will undoubtedly have a significant impact on the long-term health and sustainability of farming. As an industry, we’ve minimized the powerful stigma that exists around mental health. Industries, just like people, typically won’t change unless they have to. However, low points or […] Read more

More transparency needed on fertilizer prices

Many analysts complain about a lack of grain price transparency in Western Canada, but grain prices are readily available compared to pricing information for fertilizer. Scores of analysts weigh in each day on what’s happening in the marketplace and whether prices are likely to go higher or lower. By comparison, fertilizer pricing is a black […] Read more


Farmers need more carbon tax analysis

Last week’s front-page story by Robin Booker was a substantial piece. After filing a series of requests through the federal Access to Information Act to determine what, if anything, the Canadian government had done to determine the effect of the pending carbon tax on farmers, Robin searched through a mountain of information to determine that […] Read more

Letters to the editor – February 14, 2019

Food guide debate needs some clarity My comments are not directed at the revised Canada Food Guide. In many respects, it is the old guide with a fresh coat of paint, where meat is back in the bad books, plus dairy, but good advice on more fruits and vegetables. My comments concern some of the […] Read more

Bernadette Jordan, Member of Parliament for the riding of South Shore-St. Margaret’s in Nova Scotia, was named Canada’s Minister for Rural Economic Development.  |  Gordon Lambie/Sherbrooke Record photo

Ag Day – Opportunity provided by a Rural Economic Development Minister

Opinion As part of the recent Cabinet shuffle, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took the opportunity to expand the Cabinet table with the creation of a ministerial position focused on rural economic development. We congratulate Minister Jordan on her appointment and welcome the addition of another voice at Cabinet that can speak to, among other things, […] Read more


All sides will win under recent orphan well ruling

Last week’s Supreme Court decision establishing that bankrupt oil companies cannot renounce their environmental responsibilities strikes the appropriate balance between economic opportunity and the environment. The 5-2 decision released Jan. 31 means that trustees who oversee disbursement of assets belonging to insolvent companies must first use the proceeds from those assets to clean up abandoned […] Read more

News flash. Small to medium sized grain farms can be profitable and progressive. While the trend to larger operations will continue, don’t judge a farm’s success simply by its acreage.
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Acreage not best way to judge a farm’s success

How many acres do you farm? It may seem like a straight-forward, natural question, but it isn’t always a comfortable question to answer. Plus, the answer can be open to a lot of interpretation. You’ve probably been asked the question repeatedly if you engage in conversations at farm trade show booths while talking to vendors […] Read more