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NEWS ROUNDUP – for Jan. 4, 2010

EQUIPMENT

A PUSH ’N’ DRIVE OVER GATE

Safety is just as much a feature as convenience in Rem’s new Push’N’Drive Over Gate.

There’s no climbing in and out of the tractor to open, then close gates to corrals, alleys, lanes and pastures. Just push the gate down with the nose of your tractor or truck as you pass through, and it springs back into an upright position at a speed you set by adjusting the tension on the springs. It works from either direction and the spindles can be slipped in and out for easy walk-through access.

The Push’N’Drive Over Gate comes in six-, 14-and 16-foot lengths, five or nine feet high, and weighs from 300 to 850 pounds. The gate is designed to withstand the weight of tractors and feed equipment, yet works just as slick for light trucks and ATVs. It’s also used in fencelines to allow irrigation pivots to move along without having to be there to open and close gates. There’s very little pressure on the rods when the gate is in the down position so it barely tickles the underside of vehicles and equipment.

The only thing the gate won’t let through is cattle, Rem business development specialist Brian Shygera assures us. The minute cattle poke at it with their noses or rub against it, the gate’s movement startles them and they move away.

The gate has been tested under Western Canada’s severe winter weather conditions and works as it should as long as the snow is cleared away. If the site is prone to rutting in wet weather or the gate will be in frequent use, it’s best to remove the dirt and place it on a six-to eight-inch-deep gravel base. For regular installations, the ground should be fairly level and gravel should be placed under the drive-over pads built into the base of the longer gates. Maintenance is as simple as greasing the sleeves occasionally.

The upright at one end of the gate is chained to the corral or fence end posts, so it’s easy to detach, pick up and move to another location.

The Push’N’Drive Over Gate is manufactured by Rem Enterprises at Swift Current, Sask. and sold through its network of dealers. All gates break down into a single wooden crate for shipping. The gates retail for $980 (six foot), $1,650 (14 foot) and $1,795 (16 foot).

For more information, call 1-800-667-7420, email or check it out at

FORAGE

NATIONAL FORAGE ASSOCIATION IN THE WINGS

If all goes according to plan, 2010 will see the birth of a new national forage organization to be known as the Canadian Forage and Grassland Association (CFGA).

Representatives of provincial forage associations, forage exporters and processors, forage and grassland user groups, extension and research personnel, and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) have been meeting regularly for more than a year to advance the initiative.

Incorporation of the CFGA was in progress in December when representatives met to discuss the structure of the board.

Manitoba Forage Council executive director Wayne Digby outlined the objectives of the new association during the annual Manitoba Grazing School at Brandon in December. The CFGA will:

Provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, philosophies and research findings.

Initiate and support programs and policies to improve the Canadian forage and grassland industry.

Promote the optimum use of forage and grasslands for the efficient production of food, fibre and energy products.

Promote the use of forages in crop rotations and in fragile soils to improve the sustainability of Canadian agriculture and for soil, water and environmental enhancement. Assist with identifying constraints in the Canadian forage and grassland industry and initiate remedial action through research, industry action or the development of government policy.

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