GFM Network News


Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada plant breeder Dr. Yousef Papadopoulos holding a sample of AAC Trueman alfalfa to show its branching root and unique rhizomatous growth habit systems.

New branch-rooted alfalfa cultivar hits the market

AAC Trueman is more resilient in extreme weather and can withstand extended periods of dryness, wetness or flooding

It’s been 30 years in the making, but a new branch-rooted alfalfa cultivar that is tolerant to both drought and excessive moisture is now available in Canada. It’s an important advancement given the increased occurrence of extreme weather events including heavy rains, flooding and drought. The licensing right for this new variety was awarded in […] Read more

Sweet clover is high in coumarin, which converts to dicoumarol – a potent vitamin K antagonist and anticoagulant– if the plant is spoiled or damaged.

Vet Advice: Avoiding sweet clover poisoning

A variety of bacteria and moulds can grow in sweet clover once baled or put up as silage

Preparing forages and getting them stored in perfect condition seldom happens. Spoilage is often linked to the production of moulds and a broad spectrum of mycotoxins in grains. Syndromes in domestic livestock following consumption of feed containing mycotoxins varies depending on the species of animal involved, the stage of the production cycle when it is […] Read more


Hay is likely to be expensive in many areas this year due to weather.

Penciling out economics of winter cattle feeding

Feeding: News Roundup from the September 30, 2019 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Drought took its toll on many hay fields, while others were so wet that producers struggled to get a dry bale. For many beef producers on both ends of the spectrum, the result is high-cost feed. Ted Nibourg, a farm business management specialist with Alberta Agriculture and Food, outlined some of the economic factors producers […] Read more

A livestock extension specialist with Alberta Agriculture says it’s important that cattle consume the feed in front of them, especially when considering body condition score over winter.

Beef and forage issues series aims to boost innovation

Forages: News Roundup from the September 2019 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Alberta Agriculture and Forestry has published a series of six articles covering a pilot project that brought together farmers, ranchers, scientists and experts to improve technology and innovation adoption. For the pilot, participants toured east-central Alberta farms and discussed several topics. One topic was smooth versus rough awns. Many cattle feeders have voiced concerns about […] Read more


McKinnon: It’s silage season again

For many readers, as this article comes to press, silage season is either just starting or about to start. Putting up high-quality silage is both an art and a science. With this article I will review some of the key aspects of silage fermentation management that relate to putting up high-quality silage. Before we focus […] Read more

Pea straw has higher protein levels than oat, barley or triticale straw.

What to consider when choosing alternate cattle feed sources

Anything from pea straw to cull potatoes can help producers plug the feed gap

With a hay shortage looming across much of the Prairies, many cattle producers will need to look further afield for feed. There are numerous options for alternate feeds, such as salvaging hail-damaged or stressed crops. Nitrate toxicity is a concern if the crop was highly fertilized with nitrogen, but Barry Yaremcio, beef and forage specialist […] Read more


Many regions in Western Canada and Quebec are eligible for livestock tax deferrals due to dry conditions this year.

Feed Watch: July 22, 2019

While rain has generally improved conditions in Western Canada, a hay shortage looms in many regions. On Monday morning, the federal government released its initial list of regions eligible for livestock tax deferrals. The tax deferral allows livestock producers in designated areas to defer some of their 2019 sales to 2020, in order to restock […] Read more

In the foothills south of Calgary, July 14, 2019.

Feed Watch: July 15, 2019

As the summer wears on, the precipitation situation varies greatly across the Prairies. Rain has been plentiful in some areas, but other regions are looking at hay yields well below average. Parts of Manitoba are also losing hope for a decent second cut. Alberta The next Alberta crop report won’t be released until July 19. […] Read more


Brian Cunningham’s bison on pasture near Pigeon Lake, Alta.

Feed Watch: June 24, 2019

A look at growing conditions for forage and feed across the Prairies and Ontario

Some areas in Western Canada welcomed rain recently. But overall, the Prairies are facing a 200-millimetre moisture deficit, Environment Canada estimates. To turn around the growing season, timing of rain is at least as important as volume, Marlo Glass reports in MarketsFarm. Drought-stricken areas will need a rainy day every week or 10 days throughout […] Read more

Canadian farmers are expected to increase barley acreage this year as U.S. farmers plant more corn acres.

Klassen: Barley outlook

Market Talk with Jerry Klassen

The feed grains complex has been volatile over the past month as the market moves through a transition phase. During the second week of May, southern Alberta feedlots were buying feed barley in the range of $255/mt to $265/mt delivered while central Alberta operations were making purchases from $240/mt to $250/mt delivered. For September delivery, […] Read more