GFM Network News



Palmer amaranth. (United Soybean Board photo)

North Dakota still on lookout for Palmer amaranth

CNS Canada –– Officials in North Dakota continue to hunt down suspicious plants in a bid to keep the aggressive weed Palmer amaranth from establishing there. Palmer amaranth, a pigweed species, made its first confirmed appearance in North Dakota last month, in a soybean field in McIntosh County, in the south-central area of the state. […] Read more


New GM technique promises to speed new crop development

CNS Canada — Scientists in the United States say they have found a new method for inserting genes into crops that could speed up development of new varieties. “Making genetic improvements that were difficult or impossible before will be much easier because we can now insert not just one or two genes, but multiple genes […] Read more

It's possible with DNA testing to figure out which bull sired your calves, but is it worth the hassle?

Which bull sired that calf?

Parentage testing in multi-sire pastures goes under the microscope

Collecting DNA samples for parentage testing from bulls and the resulting calves from multi-sire breeding pastures is the only way to find out each bull’s value to your operation. A bull might come with a great package of traits you want to see passed to your calves, but the bull’s value is questionable if the […] Read more


(Jack Dykinga photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

U.S. patent agency to weigh rival claims on CRISPR

Reuters — The U.S. patent agency on Tuesday will hear arguments in a heated dispute over who was first to invent a revolutionary gene-editing technology known as CRISPR. Hundreds of millions of dollars may be at stake, as the technology promises commercial applications in treating genetic diseases, engineering crops, and other areas. CRISPR works as […] Read more

There is no evidence that ionophore use in livestock increases resistance to other antibiotics that are important in cattle or human medicine.

Are ionophore antibiotics a risk for antimicrobial resistance?

Last month’s column talked about Health Canada’s initiative to phase out growth promotion claims for medically important antibiotics by December 2016. This will impact three antibiotics (tetracycline, sulfamethazine and neomycin) that have growth promotion claims in beef cattle in Canada. It will not affect ionophore antibiotics like Rumensin, Bovatec, or Posistac. Ionophores are used widely […] Read more


beef carcass

Breeders will benefit from carcass data

News Roundup: From the April 2015 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

The Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC) believes the Beef InfoXchange System (BIXS) will become invaluable for cattle breeders, geneticists and beef researchers if significant numbers of producers can be encouraged to make use of the national database. And they aren’t the only ones looking forward to a more productive BIXS, according to a recent blog […] Read more

Schematic of the Principle of Fetal Programming

Fetal Programming of Beef Cattle

Beef improvement programs have traditionally focused on genetic selection. Recent advances in genomics has accelerated selection by allowing us to identify key differences in the DNA of an individual animal’s DNA sequence. Wow! — being able to “look” right into an animal’s DNA. You’d think that there can’t be much left to discover in the […] Read more