GFM Network News



Tips for starting calves on feed

Nutrition with John McKinnon

Retained ownership is a marketing strategy that is used to manage market risk. As opposed to selling weaned calves into a potentially depressed market, retaining ownership and selling at a later stage of production (i.e. as short or long yearlings, or even finished animals) offers the possibility to sell into a more favourable market, as […] Read more


Producers should score cattle at least twice a year, once in the fall coming off pasture and at calving.

McKinnon: Interested in feeding your cattle more efficiently this winter?

Nutrition with John McKinnon

As we move into fall, one of your “to-do” tasks will be to book a herd health visit with your veterinarian. This will include administering any needed vaccinations, structural soundness evaluations as well as pregnancy checking bred cows and heifers. One management tool that may not be included is body condition scoring. If this is […] 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


DuPont said considering sale of nutrition, biosciences unit

Reuters — Specialty chemicals maker DuPont is considering a sale of its nutrition and biosciences unit, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter. The unit, which supplies everything from soy-based food ingredients to tablet binders, could be worth at least US$20 billion as a standalone entity, Bloomberg said. DuPont declined to comment […] Read more

How does corn compare with other feed grains when it comes to cattle nutrition?

McKinnon: Feed grain options expanding for cattle

Nutrition with John McKinnon

One of the questions I get from beef producers relates to the relative feeding value of the various feed grains. Typically this question has focused on barley, wheat and oat grain. However, increasingly producers are asking how corn grain compares as both an energy and protein source. While to some this may seem like a […] Read more


Ag minister announces launch of Canadian food policy

Canada has its first food policy, an initiative to increase access to safe, nutritious and culturally diverse food, and to cut food waste. Marie-Claude Bibeau, minister of agriculture and agri-food and parliamentary secretary, Jean-Claude Poissant made the announcement Monday in Montreal. “The Food Policy for Canada is our road map for a healthier and more […] Read more

Don’t delay planning your winter feed supply

Nutrition with John McKinnon

This past winter was challenging, particularly for those of you who experienced drought in 2018. Feed supplies were extremely tight and compounded by unseasonably cold weather in February and March. As a result, many producers had to scramble to get sufficient feed to carry their cattle through the winter. While it is too early to […] Read more


Once a calf has been weaned, providing a low-cost, balanced ration that supplies the required nutrients for the desired rate of gain is key to success.

The nature and design of backgrounding rations

Nutrition with John McKinnon

Over the past number of years, I have had the opportunity to work with several operations whose business plans focus on backgrounding weaned calves. These programs generally fall into one of two categories. The first involves feeding calves weighing 550 to 650 pounds over the winter and marketing them in the spring at weights ranging […] Read more

ADM says to seek early retirements, may cut jobs

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. grain trader Archer Daniels Midland said on Wednesday it will seek voluntary early retirements by some North American employees and may eliminate individual jobs as part of a restructuring of specific areas. The actions are needed to strengthen ADM’s core business and establish the company as a global leader in […] Read more