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New attack on glyphosate requires immediate action

Vietnam’s decision to ban farmers from using glyphosate is troubling in three ways: it appears to rely on decisions set by lay juries rather than science, it appears also to apply to imports, and it may be the beginning of a trend. Canada exports about $297 million in agricultural products annually to Vietnam, so the […] Read more

Indirect costs, such as in transportation, are among the reasons for the sometimes fierce opposition to the carbon tax on the Prairies.  |  File photo

Why farm groups oppose carbon tax

Agricultural groups were quick to dismiss the federal government’s announcement of a carbon tax, condemning Ottawa for imposing costs on their operations. Farmers in Western Canada were particularly incensed. After investing in zero-tillage practices that sequester massive amounts of carbon into the soil, they are still being forced to pay a tax. Amid the cacophony […] Read more

Screencap via nongmoproject.org

This column is labelled GM-free

You’re walking through your local co-op grocery store in that browsing mode you sometimes fall into when you are waiting for the soil temperature to rise enough to go seeding. A smart-looking, brightly coloured label catches your eye on a bottle of orange juice. “This product does not contain strychnine,” it says, below a stylized […] Read more


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A strategic pause can sometimes be the best strategy

Do you ever have an idea? Something that you think about, something that keeps coming back to you again and again, until you finally decide to do something about it and then put plans in place to make it a reality. At its simplest form, this is strategy. The detail required in the planning (the […] Read more

Notre Dame fire highlights importance of national treasures

An iconic Paris landmark is burning as I write this. Angry orange flames are torching the historic walls of Notre Dame cathedral, and thick plumes of smoke are choking out the building’s history, one puff after another. Collective gasps of horror can be heard around the world as spectators watch the furious images — an […] Read more


AgriStability could play important role this year

If you’re a producer not enrolled in AgriStability, you’re probably in the majority. But just because you have lots of company doesn’t necessarily make it the right decision. Yes, your margin has to take a big hit before you trigger AgriStability money, but it can and does happen. And what about the uncertainty over canola […] Read more

Letters to the editor – April 18, 2019

Grants and taxes not helping farmers It seems the Saskatchewan government doesn’t care if the family farm exists, it’s all about the big or corporate farms. Nowadays to qualify for grants for wells, pipelines and dugouts you have to gross $50,000 from the farm so small farms, in order to qualify you would have to […] Read more

Buying pork from Poland ultimately the right move

It is painful to watch the spread of African swine fever through parts of Asia and Europe, yet Canada’s decision to keep accepting imports of pork from Poland is pragmatic. Since Canada would follow the same procedures Poland is ostensibly now employing, there is a duty to play this out. ASF has never been found […] Read more


The author says one of the biggest problems with Bill C-69 is that it would give the federal environment minister added discretionary power on deciding whether a project goes ahead.  | REUTERS/Todd Korol photo

Politics has no business in Bill C-69

On March 22 my board chair and I represented the Petroleum Services Association of Canada before the standing Senate committee on energy, the environment and natural resources. We were testifying on behalf of PSAC member companies, offering their views on Bill C-69, which would enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, […] Read more

China-canola disruption has wide-reaching effects

Here are some random observations on canola, China and grain markets overall. No conclusions, no solutions, just food for thought. First, given the loss of our biggest export customer for canola, it’s surprising that the price drop hasn’t been more precipitous. Canola prices have certainly declined, but there weren’t a bunch of limit down days […] Read more