GFM Network News


cooking technique

Your burgers are still done at 71

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Maintaining consumer confidence is crucial to our industry. Consumer confidence in the safety of Canadian beef was briefly shaken by the 2012 XL Foods E. coli outbreak that infected at least 18 people and resulted in the recall of 1,800 tonnes of beef, a $4 million legal settlement and the sale of the packing plant […] Read more

Antibiotic use in Canadian feedlots

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

September’s column summarized a Beef Cluster project that evaluated antibiotic use in western Canadian cow-calf operations. Nearly all cow-calf farms used antibiotics, but very few animals were treated, and most of the antibiotics used were not related to the antibiotics most commonly used in humans. But when it comes to antibiotic use in the beef […] Read more


Developing faster, cheaper diagnostic tests for calves

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Last month’s column discussed how antibiotics are used in western Canadian cow-calf operations. Respiratory diseases are a common reason for antibiotic treatment in cows, bulls, and calves and diarrhea is a common reason for antibiotic treatment in young calves. Because both respiratory and intestinal infections can involve many different microbes, having a better understanding of […] Read more

Most of the attention for antibiotic use in the beef industry is focused on the feedlot sector, but antibiotic use at the cow-calf level is also important.

Antibiotic use on Canadian cow-calf operations

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Antibiotic use records are important for producers who want to track the effectiveness of the antibiotics they use. Industry groups need antibiotic use data to refute misleading claims about our production practices. Even restaurant chains and meat companies marketing “antibiotic-free” beef need records to keep treated animals out of their “never-ever” supply stream. When it […] Read more


The recent Beef Quality Audit saw thousands of cattle and carcasses examined for a wide variety of possible defects.

What we learned from the Canada Beef Quality Audit

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Canada’s fourth Beef Quality Audit was completed in March 2018, following previous audits in 1995, 1998 and 2010-11. The carcass audit measured the incidence and economic costs of avoidable defects in Canadian slaughter cattle and beef and identified opportunities to avoid these losses. What they did: Mark Klassen, Joyce van Donkersgoed and a team of […] Read more

Mark your calendars. The Canadian Beef Industry Conference, Aug. 14-16, will soon be here.

This column is brought to you by your national check-off

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

The third annual Canadian Beef Industry Conference (CBIC) takes place in London, Ont., on August 14-16. The CBIC is co-hosted by the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC), Canada Beef, Canadian Beef Breeds Council, and the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA). The CBIC’s Bov-Innovation session is a popular, interactive, fast-paced workshop full of tips, ideas, and concepts […] Read more


Have you rotated your breeds lately?

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Before becoming a politician and long before becoming a noted western Canadian historian, Grant McEwan was an animal science professor at the University of Saskatchewan. In 1938, he and A.M. Shaw published “An Experiment in Beef Production in Western Canada” (Scientific Agriculture XIX:177-198), summarizing one of Canada’s first crossbreeding projects. Straightbred two-year-old Angus, Shorthorn, Galloway […] Read more

Understanding where ticks such as this Rocky Mountain wood tick are and what influences their population will help develop strategies to avoid spreading of tickborne diseases.

A story to make your skin crawl

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Cattle won’t be the only creatures enjoying fresh pasture this spring; so will the Rocky Mountain wood tick and the American dog tick, which can transmit anaplasmosis and other bloodborne diseases. Anaplasmosis was removed from the federally reportable disease list in 2014, so the government is no longer responsible for dealing with anaplasmosis outbreaks or […] Read more


How castration method and age affect pain in young calves

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Canada’s Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Beef Cattle requires that castration be performed by an experienced person who uses proper, clean, well-maintained equipment and accepted techniques. A producer is expected to seek guidance from their veterinarian on the optimum method and timing of castration, as well as the availability and advisability […] Read more

Pasture blends

Research on the Record with Reynold Bergen

Most forage seed companies offer a pasture blend. Some customize their blend to the customer’s situation, but others use a least-cost formulation to produce a more attractively priced blend. Ideally, the blend should contain grasses and legumes that grow well together, are well adapted to the environment and soil type they will be seeded in, […] Read more