I once wrote a column on how farm groups sternly preached the value of what they reverently called “sound science” but, in fact, usually endorsed only “science that sounds good” to the groups. | File photo

Farm groups often worry about science only when it suits

I once wrote a column on how farm groups sternly preached the value of what they reverently called “sound science” but, in fact, usually endorsed only “science that sounds good” to the groups. I noted most of that good-sounding science was “science” tied to research bought-and-paid-for by the groups themselves. This tactic continues to confuse, […] Read more

Listening is best medicine in tough times

There is no need to list the curveballs this crop year has thrown at Canadian producers. Farmers know how hard it’s been. Each of the weather and market hurdles have kept thousands of you up at night as you run through scenarios of what might happen next and what you can do to pull through. […] Read more

This year’s late harvest has domino effect

The immature crops, rain and snow that have delayed harvest will have wide-ranging ramifications: some are obvious and some are not. The financial hit is at the top of the obvious list. A lot of malting barley has been reduced to feed and a great deal of wheat and durum will now fall into the […] Read more


Procrastination is a major roadblock for farm planning

Start by starting. When you think about it, that’s logical, isn’t it? So much so, that when I googled “start by starting,” I found a bunch of references to it and numerous people applying it to what they do. Meryl Streep uses it as part of what she has used to advance her career development […] Read more

Letters to the editor – October 3, 2019

Issues more important than Trudeau’s past Enough. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was part of a school production. It was 20 years ago. I don’t care what happened 20 years ago. I care about today. The political rhetoric that has happened over the last several weeks should not overshadow the issues that should be addressed in […] Read more


Some are arguing that the American government would have trouble defending the legal authority it assumes it has to spend $28 billion in taxpayer money on “the White House’s trade war with China.”  |  Getty Images

U.S. farm aid covers up policy failure

You know you’re deep in the rabbit hole when bad news — say, a government report that shows steep cuts in anticipated 2019 crop yields — is good news because it will hopefully boost prices. Conversely, when good news arrives, like an unexpected week of perfect September weather, it’s actually bad news because it just […] Read more

Dennis Pohl, left, and Dave Jordan aren’t farmers, but deep farm connections keep them active at the museum. Pohl is the resident volunteer who lives on the grounds of the Manitoba Agricultural Museum and Jordan is a weekend volunteer who drives out to Austin after spending the week working as a mechanic at an auto dealership.  |  Ed White photo

Many non-farmers remain connected to agriculture

How do you run a big farmer event without farmers? That’s what I was pondering — a compelling rural mystery — as I headed out to meet the volunteers getting ready for the Manitoba Threshermen’s Reunion and Stampede. After 65 years, the reunion is operating in a prairie landscape that contains only about one-tenth of […] Read more

Climate action takes on religious undertones

A new religion is sweeping the world — the religion of climate change. Like many of the ancient religious dogmas, it relies more on faith than evidence and also like traditional religions, it runs the risk of becoming fanatical. For the firm believers, evidence of climate change devastation is everywhere. Every weather anomaly is now […] Read more


Canada must find a way to remake its strategy on China

For more than 25 years, Liberal and Conservative governments have approached China based on an implied quid pro quo. The underlying assumption has been that if Canada showed “friendship” to the People’s Republic of China (PRC) by acceding to its demands, allowing China to further its economic and geostrategic interests in Canada, then China would […] Read more

Greens miss science in ag

The Green Party’s platform mentions agriculture 18 times. Bottom line: There is good, bad and ugly. The “good”: The Greens would address “climate risk with the focus on disaster assistance” in Canada’s business risk management programs. (They should address market risk too.) They would encourage urban agriculture on rooftops and in school gardens. (OK, great.) […] Read more