GFM Network News


Dittmer: Why the U.S. wants to reform the WTO

Free Market Reflections with Steve Dittmer

Being an export-oriented beef industry and veteran of the mCOOL fiasco, Canadian cattle producers know what the initials WTO stand for (World Trade Organization). The mCOOL deal boldly illustrated one of the major problems with the WTO — it takes forever to get anything resolved. Our joint experience with mCOOL was not the worst example. […] Read more

Canadian beef exports to Japan have grown substantially in 2019.

Beef and veal exports up in 2019

Markets: News Roundup from the December 2019 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

The latest numbers from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and Statistics Canada show that beef and veal exports grew significantly in 2019. As of September 30, Canada had exported a total of 330,757 tonnes of beef and veal, compared to 294,527 in the same period last year, a growth of 12 per cent. The dollar value […] Read more


If Canada sticks to a rules-based playbook on trade mean it won’t get any cake at all?

Comment: Having our cake and eating it, too

The saying about wanting to have your cake and eat it too has always annoyed me. Why would I have a piece of cake if not to eat it? And in order to eat the cake, I must first have it. But shake up the sentence structure, and the saying suddenly makes sense (at least […] Read more

Stagnant access to Chinese markets will put more incentive on Canada’s exporters to develop new markets available to them through the CPTPP.

Dittmer: Exporting commodities is not always easy

Free Market Reflections with Steve Dittmer

The problems for Canada over Huawei’s Meng situation have grown more complex. The preliminary hearing, which was already scheduled for eight days, has morphed into a multi-week, perhaps multi-month, legal extravaganza. Arguments about possible co-ordination between the U.S. and Canada, possible violation of her legal rights and the possibility of her extradition even being dropped […] Read more



China, France sign deals worth $15 bln during visit

Beijing | Reuters – China and France signed contracts totalling $15 billion during a visit by President Emmanuel Macron, a Chinese government official told a news briefing on Wednesday. Deals were struck in the fields of aeronautics, energy and agriculture, including approval for 20 French companies to export poultry, beef and pork to China. They also agreed to expand […] Read more


Canada, China meet over canola stalemate

[UPDATED: Oct. 31, 2019] Glacier FarmMedia – Canada and China finally had a face-to-face meeting *Oct. 28 in Geneva on China’s de facto import ban of Canadian canola seed. The private consultation under the auspices of the World Trade Organization (WTO) went well, according to Brian Innes, the Canola Council of Canada’s *vice-president of public […] Read more

U.S. President Donald Trump appears with China President Xi Jinping at the G20 leaders summit on June 29, 2019.

Dittmer: Opening trade wars vs. getting the lid back on

Free Market Reflections with Steve Dittmer

Cattle producers have historically fretted at being regulated and taxed by politicians in some distant capitol. I believe Canadian cattle producers agree. Down here in the States, we sometimes ponder giving up on draining the swamp and just adding lots more water. But Canadians actually get a double dose. You not only have to deal with Ottawa […] Read more


The trade picture between the U.S. and China has ‘more twists and turns than a cow’s G.I. tract.’ – Steve Dittmer.

The trade and politics stampede

Free Market Reflections with Steve Dittmer

This trade circus reminds me of the chuckwagon races at the Calgary Stampede. The U.S. and China keep going round and round and ending up at the same place. President Trump threatens more tariffs and then like the outrider in the chucks, he closes in the last few yards from the finish and pulls them back […] Read more

Kazakhstan ag industry looks to build relationships in Canada

Purely Purebred with Mike Millar: News about you from the September 2019 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Delegates from Kazakhstan were among the attendees at Ag in Motion, north of Saskatoon, this July. Dauren Matakbayev, director of Kazakhstan’s Republican Chamber of Hereford Breed, says the country has moved past Soviet-era politics. A new generation is working to develop the economy, he said. Matakbayev and his colleagues are working to build the country’s […] Read more