Antibiotics survey leaves wrong impression on meat

A CNN report in mid-October started this way: “Six consumer interest groups are now sounding the alarm about the use of antibiotics in meat served at the 25 largest burger chains in the United States.” The issue of antibiotic resistant infections, mainly due to overuse of antibiotics in humans, is important and well-known. The alarm […] Read more

Farmers must monitor interest rates because higher rates will mean higher financing costs.  | REUTERS/Fred Greenslade photo

Rising interest rates: what to expect

After almost a decade near historical lows, Canadian interest rates are on the rise. The Bank of Canada, after cutting its policy rate sharply during the late-2000s financial crisis and again during the commodity collapse of 2014-16, has now rolled out a series of rate hikes. Longer-term interest rates are also trending higher, with the […] Read more

Lack of knowledge about agriculture still rife in Ottawa

In agriculture, there’s a lot of talk about the urban-rural divide. Many conversations within the farm community are about how too many people in this country know next to nothing about how the food on their plates gets there. Public trust, sustainability and farm-to-fork have all become popular catchphrases as the agriculture industry tries to […] Read more

This important ag group keeps a low profile

Working quietly behind the scenes on difficult and complicated issues, the Canada Grains Council has become the country’s most important agriculture lobby organization. You may never have heard about it. The council is rarely in the news and most farmers across the country have only a vague notion or perhaps no notion at all about […] Read more

Farm groups delighted as CPTPP ratified

When the House of Commons ratified the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership last week, followed quickly by royal assent, many farm groups reacted with glee. Canada is the fifth country to ratify the agreement — Mexico, Japan, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand are the others — which encompasses 11 countries and almost 500 […] Read more

Letters to the editor – November 1, 2018

Marijuana oils should be legal Re: Trudeau’s marijuana legalization misses the mark when it comes to medicinal use. The total focus of the liberal marijuana legalization is all about recreation pot smoking. A legal age customer can walk into any government-approved retail outlet and buy all the buds he or she can carry out. Smoke […] Read more

Applying sound management practices during tough times helps ensure that financial challenges are as short-lived as possible.  |  Getty images

It’s important to get on top of financial difficulties early

When you’re a farmer, it doesn’t take long to slip into financial difficulty. Management decisions in the 1980s, 1990s and into the early 2000s — especially around debt — helped contribute to degrees of financial hardship. The problems were often compounded by factors outside a farmer’s control, including low commodity prices, high interest rates and […] Read more

The author says Canada’s food system is its greatest resource and cannot allow “ideologues and professional blusterers” to play chicken with the dairy sector.  |  File photo

Dairy sector vital to food sovereignty

If ultra-conservative politicians and pundits had their way, we’d all be cheesed off at Canada’s supply management system. They would have Canadians believe that milk in the Great White North is a rip-off, and the only way to “fix” our dairy supply system is to trade it in for something more akin to a model […] Read more

Perfection isn’t the name of the game when handing over tasks to the next generation.  |  File photo

Avoid fixating on transition details that don’t matter

When transferring a business, especially a farm business, management transition is often the most challenging part between incoming and outgoing generations. Families often struggle with the change in roles and responsibilities and the giving up of control. The claim that tasks are often “not done the right way” is a common cry from those with […] Read more

Canada launches new charm offensive — this time in China

In the months after U.S. President Donald Trump was elected to the Oval Office, the Trudeau government launched a major charm offensive. Minister after minister headed south for meetings with American officials, including members of the House of Representatives, senators, governors and senior staff within the Trump administration. Parliamentary committees travelled south to meet with […] Read more