Prairie Organic Grain Initiative June Teleconference Call
In 2017, the Organic Value Chain Roundtable consulted Canadian national and provincial organic associations to learn more about the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats to the sector. Marie-Eve Levert discussed the results of this SWOT analysis and its implications for the organic industry.
Farmers Drop Organic Labels Over Certification Process, Access To Markets, Study Says
Midwestern fruit and vegetable farmers are more likely than their counterparts in other regions to give up federal organic certification, according to a Purdue University study.
Rain in the East, Drought in the West Affecting Organic Crops
While organic farmers in Western Canada are praying for rain, their counterparts in Ontario are praying for the land to dry out.
Cash Cropping with Intercrops
Recorded at Manitoba Ag Days in January, 2018, Colin Rosengren, a Producer in Midale, SK shares his story "Cash Cropping with Intercrops"
Organic Processing in Manitoba a Bright Spot
The numbers look slim, but experts say Manitoba’s modest processing increases in 2016 miss part of the story.
Organic Acres Up, Farmer Numbers Stable
Manitoba and Saskatchewan couldn’t match Alberta’s explosion of new organic producers in 2016, but local experts say their gains have been in acres, not farms.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative May Teleconference Call
On the May teleconference call, Jill Guerra, Research & Special Projects Coordinator at the Canada Organic Trade Association presented on Organic Agriculture in the Prairies - 2016 Data Report. Click here to download the presentation and listen to the audio!
Dry the Weeds, Keep the Crops
Scientists are studying alternative tools for weed management. One such tool is propane-fueled flame weeding.
New Organic Oat Varieties in the Pipeline
Prairie organic growers can for the first time this spring grow a registered variety of oats that has been developed under organic management.
Organic Markets Staying the Course as Spring Arrives
Snow was still lingering on some Canadian fields at the end of April, but the late spring should soon be a distant memory as temperatures warm up and seeding gets underway across the country.
Organic Wheat Management Supports Bee Communities
A recent study published in Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment investigated the effects of organic vs. conventional farming in large- and small-scale agriculture on wild bee communities and the flowers that they rely on. Click here to read more on the findings of the study.
Saskatchewan Organic Growers Urged to Register Their Fields
An organization that represents organic farmers in Saskatchewan is encouraging its members to register their fields through an online registry called DriftWatch.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative April Teleconference: Organic Science Cluster Call – Part II
The Prairie Organic Grain Initiative (POGI) partnered with the Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada (OACC) to deliver two teleconferences to share research results from the Organic Science Cluster II program. Click here to download and listen to the presentations!
Looking Ahead to Organic Lentil Markets in 2018
There’s an old adage in farming: half of the trick to success in grain marketing is planting the right crop in the first place. To that end, we can look at new-crop production contracting opportunities to guide seeding decisions. Unfortunately for organic growers, these are less common than in the conventional grain business.
Downturn for Organic Malt Barley and Hemp Markets
As organic producers look to clean out the 2017 crop from their bins before seeding, they’re finding lower prices than they’re willing to sell for.
Organic Science Cluster Call – Part I
The Prairie Organic Grain Initiative (POGI) partnered with the Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada (OACC) to deliver two teleconferences to share research results from the Organic Science Cluster II program. Click here to download and listen to the presentations! Don't miss the next call on April 11th.
Online Tool to Help Organic Hopefuls Navigate Transition
Organic growers want better risk management for transitioning farms, and the Canadian Organic Growers (COG) hope an online tool will fit the bill.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative March Teleconference Call
On the March teleconference call, Leslie Johnson, Merchandiser at Pipeline Foods presented on challenges and opportunities in the Prairie Organic Grain Supply Chain. Click here to listen to the presentation and view the PowerPoint!
Organic Grain Marketing 101: Part 3 – Logistics
The logistics costs involved in getting organic grain from farms to markets are astronomical. Conventional grain crops grown in Western Canada can usually be trucked to an elevator within an hour of the farm. Organic crops can easily spend eight to 12 hours in a truck before they find a market.
Organic Grain Marketing 101: Part 2 – Rejection Risk
Lots of growers have been through the unpleasant experience of having a load of grain rejected on delivery. Generally, the cause is something in the environment that couldn’t be controlled.
Organic Grain Marketing 101: Part 1 – Liquidity
The substance of grain marketing is the same for all farmers — to generate income. The quality of the decision, to sell today or to wait, ends up having a big impact on the farm’s revenue stream, profitability, future potential, and the owners’ quality of life.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative February Teleconference Call
On the February teleconference call, Colin Rosengren, Owner-Operator of Rosengren Farms Inc. presented a conventional farmer's perspective on intercropping. Click here to listen to the presentation and view the Dr. Martin Entz's PowerPoint on the science behind intercropping!
It’s Not Your Grandparents’ Farm
Ag Days talk highlights advancements being made to support modern organic farmers.
Grain Apprenticeship Opportunities on the Prairies Abound
Organic grain farm apprenticeships are one model of supporting new and aspiring farmers who may or may not have grown up on, or worked on farms before, but who want to join the growing number of land stewards and managers of organic and regenerative farms.
New Study Shows Soil on Organic Farms Store Larger Amounts of Carbon
A large U.S. field study looks at how organic farming stores away carbon in the soil and out of the atmosphere.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative January Teleconference Call
On the January teleconference call, Dr. Tracy Misiewicz, Associate Director of Science Programs at The Organic Center presented on the role of organic farming in climate change mitigation. Click here to listen to the presentation and view the PowerPoint!
Canada’s Organic Sector Books Better-Than-Expected Year
Despite a dry summer across most of Western Canada, organic producers are celebrating a good year. However, weather worries are beginning to mount ahead of the 2018 campaign.
Perennial Grain Serves up Rich Flavour, With a Side of Sustainability
The first loaves of bread made from Kernza have been gobbled up in Manitoba.
Is There Enough Room in the Industry for More Organic Producers?
Recently, the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative had the opportunity to ask grain buyers and brokers, certification bodies, as well as a number of organic producers, their opinions on the current organic sector. Listen to the response here!
Organic Industry Must Invest in Infrastructure
It’s time for the organic and non-GMO industry to invest in infrastructure to straighten the current “crooked” supply chain, said Eric Jackson, chief executive officer of Pipeline Foods.
Crop Insurance Needs an Update on Organic Production
Organic growers argue that insurance excludes critical production practices, but change may come with some real logistical problems, according to MASC.
Good Quality Harvest Now Looking for a Market
Another harvest is in the books across most of Western Canada and the winter marketing season is just getting underway.
Worry-Free Crop Storage
A little preparation prior to harvesting can ensure worry-free winter crop storage.
Plant Breeding: Selecting for Success
Participatory Plant Breeding program allows farmers to select their ideal varieties.
Organic Grain Bids Hold Steady at Harvest Time
‘Low yields, good quality’ have been the story of this organic growing year.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative October Teleconference Call
On the October teleconference call, Jill Guerra of the Canada Organic Trade Association presented on the 2015 Data Report: "Organic Agriculture in the Prairies". Click here to listen to the audio and download her presentation!
Rourke Farms Explores Organic Equipment Options
Rourke Farms near Minto, MB put equipment options to the test this year as the farm started the processing of becoming certified organic.
OFRF Now Accepting Research Proposals
OFRF is pleased to release their Request for Proposals for 2018 research grants. In particular, OFRF encourages farmers, ranchers, graduate students, early career researchers, veterans, and Extension personnel to consider applying for funding.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative September Teleconference Call
On the September teleconference call, Dr. Martin Entz introduced the Canadian Prairie Agroecosystem Resiliency Network and its underlying principles, goals, and missions. Martin encouraged industry to support the farmers they work with and buy from. Click here to listen to the call!
Helping Farmers Meet Growing Demand for Organics
The agriculture and agri-food sector is a key contributor to the Canadian economy. The Government of Canada is committed to working with the agricultural industry in developing new risk management assessments and tools that help farmers manage risk.
Researchers Investigate How to Boost Organic Hemp Yields
Researchers find that nutrient management is important for getting better and more consistent yields.
Keeping a Pulse on the Soil
According to soil scientist Frank Larney, crop residue anchors the soil against wind and water erosion. Avoiding bare soils is one part of a soil conservation package he and his research team demonstrate in a 12-year experiment growing pulses in southern Alberta, Canada.
Organic Trade Slow, But Harvest Likely to Pick Things up
Organic grain markets may start to heat up with harvest now underway, but for August buyers and sellers were mostly content to bide their time on the sidelines.
New Organic Grain Processor Under Construction in Montana
Organic Alberta Members Montana Specialty Mills, are building a new $20 million, 20-acre processing center in Great Falls that will feature grain processing equipment dedicated to making non-bioengineered/non-GMO products and processing organic oilseeds.
Organic Field Trial at Swift Current Research and Development Centre
An impromptu tour of some of the organic field trials at the Swift Current Research and Development Centre, of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, was held on August 9th. Click here to find out what participants learned!
Heritage and Ancient Grain Project Feeds a Growing Demand
After a century of markets dominated by a few types of wheat and white flour, ancient and heritage wheat varieties are making a comeback.
Producer Puts Plants to Work as Solar Panels
Saskatchewan producer says he has found ways to keep things greener longer and capture more energy from the sun.
Increase Crop Diversity, Reduce Risk by Intercropping: Overyielding
Natural systems are diverse and include a variety of plants, animals, microbes and fungi. This diversity is considered a key to their resilience and stability. Intercrops are one way to bring some of this diversity to agro-ecosystem structures, accessing different portions of the soil volume.
Eyes on Crops in Western Canada’s Organic Market
Western Canada’s organic crops are reaching a critical phase in the growing cycle, and despite trouble in areas of the Prairies, carryover from last year is keeping a lid on certain markets.
Seed Production Capacity Building Grants
The Bauta Family Seed Initiative is excited to renew their Seed Production Capacity Building Grant Program!
Growing and Dehulling the Ancient Grains Einkorn, Emmer and Spelt
The ancient hulled wheats spelt, emmer, and einkorn are sought by consumers and chefs alike for their distinct flavor, nutritional properties, and the intrigue of eating a meal that has sustained humans since ancient times. Learn more about growing and dehulling these ancient gains!
Manitoba Farm Family on a Roll With Organic Cleaning and Milling
The DeRuycks have been milling their own grains and marketing their own organic flour for years, but now their business once again looks set to expand.
Organic Management in the Prairie Provinces
Growing organic grain takes lots of planning. Besides the careful design of crop rotations, thinking ahead may mean predicting problems like nutrient deficiencies not just in the coming season, but also one or more years down the road. Monitoring is also critical. This article focuses on organic management of industrial hemp and other crops in the Prairie Provinces of Canada.
Proper Rotations Require Careful Crop Management
A sound rotation is the single most effective means of providing higher and more stable yields, soil benefits such as fertility and improved weed, pest and disease management.
What’s Holding Back Organic Growth in Saskatchewan?
Michael Gertler, a sociologist at the University of Saskatchewan, has identified six factors that limit organic farming in Saskatchewan.
The W. Garfield Weston Foundation Contributes $2-Million to Canadian Seed Biodiversity
USC Canada is pleased to announce a generous $2-million donation from The W. Garfield Weston Foundation in support of the most comprehensive nation-wide seed biodiversity program: The Bauta Family Initiative on Canadian Seed Security.
Tell COG About Your Experience Transitioning to Organic Production
Calling all farmers! Canadian Organic Growers is looking to understand the risks and rewards of transitioning to organic production. Tell them your story.
Organic, Conventional Farmers Encounter Different Weed Issues
An average of eight weed species exist in an organic field, compared to 5.5 in a conventional field. Learn other ways that weeds on organic and conventional farms differ.
Weeds are a few of my Favourite Things
Weeds will always be with us. They are a natural part of the agro-ecosystem.
Watch the Pivot and Grow Production Videos to see what organic grain production can do for you.
Organic Grain Prices
Knowing price trends over the years will help you to plan effective crop rotations, and give you context to make decisions, market your products successfully, and maximize profits for your farming business.
Questions? Talk to an Expert at 1-800-245-8341
Do you have questions about organic transition, production, or marketing? Call us and talk to an expert today!
Nutrient Density Comparison
The Farming Systems Trial at Rodale Institute conducted a study to determine and compare the nutritive quality of grains grown conventionally and organically.
Business to Business Directory
Discover businesses and farmers across the prairies. The Business to Business Directory lists all companies that provide services or products and connects thousands of organic businesses together - from producer to end retailer!
Why Organic Wheat Escaped Fusarium Last Year
Researchers say practices such as proper varieties and rotations are just as important as fungicides in disease control.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative Call of the Land Interview
Learn about some of the amazing resources that the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative has developed for transitioning and organic farmers.
COG’s Third Edition of the Organic Field Crop Handbook Set Now Available!
The Organic Field Crop Handbook - 3rd Edition, provides a road map to field crop producers who aspire to improve the environmental sustainability and profitability of their farming operations.
New Resource: Green Manure Tool Kit
A reliable and effective green manure program is essential for the success of an organic farm. This Tool Kit is a practical guide that will help producers to select the best green manure for their farm conditions. The right green manure with the right management will build soil fertility, control weeds, and improve crop yield.
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative Monthly Teleconference Calls
Join us on the second Wednesday of every month to hear from and speak with local farmers, experts, and researchers of the industry.
Peat Soils – How do we Manage Them for Organic Agriculture?
Due to the instability of peat soils, good soil management practices should be used. Learn how to manage peat soils for organic agriculture.
Rotations: Designing a System That Works for You
Developing an optimal rotation plan involves two main sets of decisions, which crops to grow, and in which order to grow them.
Cultural Practices: To Give the Crop Advantage
Cultural techniques provide the conditions for strong crop competitiveness and thus for optimal crop yield and quality.
From Harvest to Sale: Maintaining Food Quality in Storage
Maintaining that quality after harvest is the key to successful marketing, to pleasing customers and to gaining top dollar for top quality.
Glenlea Research Station Celebrates 25th Year of Organic Research
Check out the 25th anniversary video for research highlights!
Consider Time When Planting Green Manure Mixtures
Green manure mixtures are where it all begins when it comes to organic production.
Planning Crop Rotations: The Diversity is What Makes You Sustainable
Learn how you can maintain soil fertility and manage weeds through crop rotation.
Strategies for Successful & Sustainable Weed Management
Listen to Katherine Stanley and Scott Shiels discuss the best ways to manage weeds.
Weed Management in Organic Cropping Systems
Learn about the methods of weed control commonly employed by organic producers
Do you Have a Nutrient Management Plan for Your Farm?
Know your current whole farm nutrient status and needs - Participate in an on-Farm Nutrient Management Consultation Program for organic farmers.
New Funding for On-Farm Nutrient Management
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative receives research funding which will support farmers in developing farm nutrient management plans.
Growing Organics on the Prairies
Canadian Organic Trade Associations publishes new data on organic production on the prairies.
Prairie Organics: Think Whole Farm Presentations
If you missed any of the great talks, you have another chance to view some of the presentations.