GFM Network News



(Jack Dykinga photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

Prairie farm slapped with plant breeders’ rights infringement penalties

Farmers need to know who they are buying seed from to avoid potentially significant costs

Infringing on Plant Breeders’ Rights (PBR) has cost a large southern Alberta farm a record $737,597. “The settlement relates to unauthorized advertisements and sales of PBR-protected barley and wheat varieties,” Alliance Seed, SeCan and an unnamed seed company said in a news release Wednesday. The settlement “includes the royalties, plus legal fees and penalties,” Todd […] Read more



Soybeans. (Alfribeiro/iStock/Getty Images)

China building world’s largest seed bank

Larger facility a bid to boost food security

Beijing | Reuters — China will complete a new national crop germplasm bank this year, the agriculture minister said Wednesday, to boost the country’s capacity to develop new crop varieties and enhance food security. The bank has a designed capacity of 1.5 million copies, almost four times the existing one, and will be the world’s […] Read more


File photo of Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau speaking to media in Winnipeg in March 2019. (Dave Bedard photo)

Bibeau says government committed to federal plant breeding

Seed royalty consultations stalled

The Canadian government is committed to plant breeding, federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau told members of the Canadian Farm Writers’ Federation on Tuesday. Some farmers and seed industry officials suspect Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) variety development work, along with many other programs, will be on the chopping block post-COVID-19 as the government tackles its […] Read more

(File photo by Dave Bedard)

Farm suppliers race COVID-19 spread for planting season

Winnipeg/Chicago | Reuters — North America’s biggest farm suppliers are accelerating shipments of fertilizer, seeds and agricultural chemicals to crop-growing regions in an unprecedented race against the coronavirus that threatens to disrupt planting season. The timing could not be worse for farmers preparing to plant crops. Disruptions in deliveries of fertilizer, seeds or chemicals could […] Read more


Cargill facilities’ offices will be closed to “walk-in” traffic during the COVID-19 pandemic, the company says. (CargillAg.ca video screengrab)

Prairie elevators’ staff aim for on-site distancing

Cargill, P+H elevators stay open but with arm's-length approach

At least two Prairie grain handling firms plan to continue taking deliveries from farmers during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic — but to make the process as touchless as possible. Cargill, in a email to customers Wednesday, said its Canadian grain elevators, crush plants and ag input retail sites will remain open for deliveries and pickups, […] Read more

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


(AgroGuys.com)

Richardson buying two Alberta crop input retailers

Two independent crop input retailers in northeastern Alberta will become part of Richardson Pioneer’s ag retail chain starting Friday. Richardson on Monday announced it will buy Webb’s Crop Services Ltd. at Vermilion and Agro Guys Inc. at Forestburg, about 165 km southwest of Vermilion, for undisclosed sums. Both deals are expected to close Thursday, with […] Read more

(Scott Bauer photo courtesy ARS/USDA)

Hogs seen as key factor in input cost hikes

CNS Canada — Canada’s Farm Input Price Index has climbed slightly for the first quarter of this year. Canada-wide, the index rose 1.3 per cent for the first quarter of this year compared to the final quarter of 2016. When comparing this year’s first quarter to last year’s first quarter, however, input prices in the […] Read more