Case Studies

Hear stories of transition from fellow farmers who have shifted from conventional to organic grain farming. Learn about their successes, challenges and experiences.
AB

MacKay Ross

A LIFELONG FARMER TRANSITIONS TO ORGANIC
Find out why this farmer believes that our community and neighbours are key to a successful transition to organic production.
BC

Jed Franklin

GROWING ORGANIC CEREALS AND PROTECTING WILDLIFE HABITAT
Find out how this farm decides the best organic crops to grow.
SK

Denis Brisebois

PLANNING THE TRANSITION
Learn how this Saskatchewan farmer managed his transition to organics after a career in the oil patch.
MB

Jeremiah Evans

SUCCESS IN PLANNING ROTATIONS
Find out how this farm incorporated weed management, fertility and financial planning into their crop rotations to make for a smooth transition.
SK

Ian Cushon

EXPERIENCED ORGANIC FARMER ENCOURAGES THINKING LONG-TERM
Learn insights on equipment, weeds and building soil fertility from over 30 years of organic experience.
MB

Scott Beaton

FARMER IN LAST YEAR OF TRANSITION
Hear reflections from a new farmer in his last year of transition and learn how planning and adapting has helped him through the transition period.
AB

Scott Olsen

GETTING STARTED WITH HAY LAND
See how this farmer is down-sizing his acres under management, but making a living through organic farming starting from hay land.

Choosing the Right Cover Crop to Protect the Soil

ARTICLE
“Our main goal when using cover crops should be protecting the soil and leaving the soil nutrients in place.”

Consumers Look to Healthy Food Post-COVID Lockdown

ARTICLE
Comfort, less healthy foods were popular early in the pandemic.

Quebec Dominates Organic Growth

ARTICLE
From 2017-19, organic acreage in Quebec went from 314,000 in 2017 to 570,000 in 2019, an expansion of nearly 65 percent.

Group Calls for Climate-Resilient Ag in COVID-19 Recovery

ARTICLE
Farmers faced a ‘double whammy’ of extreme weather and the pandemic this year, according to the group Farmers for Climate Solutions.

Canadian Organic Growers’ Project Seeks to Build Made-In-Canada Supply Chains

ARTICLE
COG will develop a strategy to identify and find solutions to organic supply chain barriers so that more Canadian consumers buy locally produced Canadian organic food.

Cover Crop Roots an Essential Key to Understanding Ecosystem Services

ARTICLE
Cover crop mixtures increased total carbon inputs to soil because they simultaneously had high root and shoot inputs and they promoted higher carbon inputs from corn crop residues.

Mexico Announces Plan to Phase Out the Use of Glyphosate

ARTICLE
The country has already blocked imports of the active ingredient of the world’s most commonly used herbicide.

Bee-ing Neighbourly Helps More Farmers

ARTICLE
Researchers propose that farmers cost-share the conservation of wild bee habitat.

Pandemic Speeding Up Adoption of Technology

ARTICLE
Online ordering and virtual contracts commonplace, traceability and autonomous machines getting new push.

Soil Health and Producer Adoption

ARTICLE
Research in the North Peace Region is looking at soil quality and profitability for farmers.

Food Still Top Consumer Concern

ARTICLE
COVID-19 has only accelerated the desire to know where food is coming from

Feds Put Up $58.6M for Temporary Foreign Worker Supports

ARTICLE
The money will be aimed at improving living quarters for temporary foreign workers, the federal government said.

Profit Study Yields Trends for Organic

ARTICLE
If organic farmers get 100 per cent premiums and keep their yield drag to one-third of conventional, they tend to be more profitable than conventional growers.

Feeding Gen Z During Quarantine and Beyond

ARTICLE
Labels like "natural" and "organic" are likely to appeal to Gen Z's.

New Website Tracks Prairie Insect Pests

ARTICLE
Crop producers across the West can now access pest information and insect risk maps through a new website located at prairiepest.ca.

Japan Accepts Organic Meat From Canada

ARTICLE
A new agreement allows Canada to ship organic products to Japan containing poultry, beef, horse, sheep, goat and pork.

‘Report Card’ Aims to Raise Awareness of Soil Health

ARTICLE
Handing out marks on topics such as organic matter and cover cropping is meant to raise awareness.

How to Identify Low Organic Matter

ARTICLE
Things to look for when walking and working in the field.

Organic Sector Sees Strong Demand Even as Pandemic Batters Consumers

ARTICLE
“Organic continues to grow even in the face of crisis. It’s very much a resilient sector that continues to be able to pivot where we need to.”

Sask Ag Developing Mental Health App with Resources and Built-In Support

ARTICLE
“Having access to an app in the privacy of one’s own home will enhance the likelihood of people asking for help when they need it the most.”

Major Oat Buyer to Ban Pre-Harvest Glyphosate

ARTICLE
Starting next year, Richardson Milling will no longer purchase oats that have been sprayed with pre-harvest glyphosate or any type of desiccant.

Updated Organic Standards Clear Committee Vote

ARTICLE
The latest round of revisions for the Canadian Organic Standards has passed a key vote on its way to becoming federal regulation.

Effects of COVID-19 on the Natural Products Market

ARTICLE
Shoppers engage in natural products purchasing at high levels before, during, after the stock-up period.

TFW Program to be Overhauled After COVID-19 Outbreaks on Farms

ARTICLE
"The piece that's missing is enforcement"

Fifteen COVID-Relief Programs for Farmers and Their Employees

ARTICLE
A KAP seminar listed and explained the many programs designed to help farmers weather the effects of the pandemic.

EU Plans to Halve Pesticide Use, Expand Organic Farming

ARTICLE
“If the corona-crisis has taught us anything, it is that we have to recalibrate our relationship with the natural environment, we have to become more resilient,” EU climate chief.

NMSU Study Finds Cover Crops Can Improve Soil Health

ARTICLE
He has evaluated cover crop treatments that include different combinations of grasses, legumes and brassica, or cabbage plants.

UC Davis Students Breed New Bean Varieties for Organic Farming

ARTICLE
Some of the beans bred for organic farming bred by graduate students at UC Davis and now ready for release.

Crowdfunding the Farm

ARTICLE
These unconventional farms are raising the funds they need for expansion and to support their ongoing operations by turning to customers and small investors.

Prairie Dryness Persists

ARTICLE
Farmers through parts of southern Saskatchewan and Manitoba are looking for more rain after weeks of windy, dry conditions have depleted soil moisture..

New Directions in Cover Crops

ARTICLE
Today, factors like microbial interactions and soil quality are influencing choices and practices.

COVID-19 Driving New Surge in Organic Sales

ARTICLE
Importance of organic continues to rise, as sales hit $55.1 billion in 2019, says Organic Trade Association.

Don’t Let Your Grain Dryer Become a Grain Fryer

ARTICLE
A few quick, simple measures can prevent your dryer — and your grain — from going up in smoke.

Online Tool Helps Select Forage Species Based on Soil Characteristics, Use, Longevity, and pH

ARTICLE
A great new tool that takes into account your regional, climate, and production considerations!

Canada, Taiwan Reach Interim Agreement for Organic Trade

ARTICLE
This applies to agricultural and processed products of plant origin, livestock and livestock products as well as aquaculture products.

With Beer Taps Off, Malt Barley Demand Down

ARTICLE
No significant drop in barley acres expected.

Plant Root Hairs Can Help Prevent Soil Erosion

ARTICLE
Researchers have found that tiny hairs on plant roots play a pivotal role in reducing soil erosion and increasing soil cohesion.

Sales of Plant-Based Food Outpacing Total Food During Pandemic

ARTICLE
In mid-March (peak), sales of plant-based foods were up 90% year-over-year.

Canada Grain Act Review Delayed by COVID-19

ARTICLE
While the review process has been delayed by COVID-19, there will be changes to the CGC’s leadership next month.

Shelterbelts’ Carbon Capture Potential Touted

ARTICLE
Researchers at the University of Saskatchewan develop an app to show landowners the economic value of their trees.

CEBA Expanded to Farms, Other ‘Owner-Operated’ Businesses

ARTICLE
Program offers zero-interest, partly-forgivable loans.

Social Media for Food Brands in the Time of COVID-19

ARTICLE
What can brands post to generate consumer response on social media?

Huge Market Potential for Pulses

ARTICLE
Pulses are experiencing billions of dollars worth of growth in annual demand.

Organic Markets Unaffected by COVID

ARTICLE
Organic grain premiums are holding up so far in the COVID-19 world, according to Mercaris.

COVID-19 Forces Ag in Motion to go Digital

ARTICLE
Ag in Motion will be a digital event July 21-25.

Organic Bids Holding Steady Amid Global Uncertainty

ARTICLE
Markets for North American organic grains held reasonably steady in April.

Feds Improve COVID-19 Ag Money, Provinces Hesitate

ARTICLE
The government announced changes to AgriStability, AgriRecovery and AgriProtection, as well as an additional $252 million in finance assistance.

New Report Identifies Short, Long-Term Challenges of COVID-19

ARTICLE
In a report resulting from discussion with 40 stakeholders, the Ottawa-based think-tank said the supply chain is performing well but uncertainty prevails.

Manitoba Offers Funding to Develop Online Food Sales and Hire Students

ARTICLE
The funding will also go toward the development of a network of pickup and delivery options to connect consumers with their orders.

COVID-19 Threatens Federal Field Research

ARTICLE
Prairie cereals' commissions urge AAFC to follow example of universities, private researchers.

It’s a Whole New Ball Game for Research Associations This Spring

ARTICLE
Pandemic isn’t having a big impact on field trials but crop walks are very much up in the air.

Saskatchewan to Bump up AgriStability Interim Payouts

ARTICLE
Allowable percentage of final benefit raised.

AgriStability Deadline Extended for 2020

ARTICLE
Income stabilization plan's latest enrolment date stretched nine weeks

General Mills Working With Oat Growers, Aiming for One “Regenerative” Acres

ARTICLE
“The main goal of the program is coaching, so growers have a resource and a larger community to say ‘I’m doing this here. This works, this doesn’t,'” Boundy says.

Producers Urged to Contact AFSC About Unharvested Acres

ARTICLE
The crop insurer understands that many farmers will need a quick decision, says Alberta Wheat chair.

Filling Jobs and Keeping the Food Supply Safe

ARTICLE
The Alberta government has launched an online resource to help strengthen the food supply chain and fill agriculture and agri-food jobs.

Federal Changes Could Attract More Workers to Agricultural Jobs

ARTICLE
The federal government has introduced changes to help students looking for summer jobs find employment in agriculture.

What is the Difference Between Organics and Regenerative Ag?

ARTICLE
Alex Boersch said regenerative brands and labels aren’t a threat to organic. He believes the two production systems can rise together.

Isolation Management Tips for On-Farm Care of Family and Employees

ARTICLE
CAHRC has created a web page that provides information and tips on COVID-19 for farmers and their employees.

Pitch Pays Off For Startup Organic Fertilizer Maker

ARTICLE
“This new technology allows farmers and processors to use more of the seed as an organic micronutrient, adding value to pea and lentil crops.”

Alberta Forage Industry Network Launching a ‘Kijiji for Farmers’

ARTICLE
The Alberta Forage Industry Network is creating a new buy-and-sell website for ranchers and farmers.

Organic Growers Now Talking About Yield

ARTICLE
A few organic growers on the Prairies are reaching yields that are about 90 percent of conventional, but most producers could set the bar a little lower.

Solid Demand Underpins Canadian Organics Amid Global Pandemic

ARTICLE
A lot of processors and end users are ramping up production to meet extra demand. – Cal Vandaele

COVID-19 Resources for Producers

ARTICLE
Health, News, and General Resources for Farmers

Cash Advance Repayment Deadlines Extended

ARTICLE
FCC gets added capital to boost lending capacity.

CFIA Notice: Canada Organic Regime during COVID-19 Situation

ARTICLE
Important information on Certification Bodies and inspections.

More Investment Needed in Value-Added Ag: CAPI

ARTICLE
The report, released March 3, said even though the value-added sector has garnered a trade surplus, it isn’t slated to reach its export share target of 5.2 percent by 2027.

FCC Lending Capacity Increases by $5B to Alleviate Industry Financial Pressure

ARTICLE
Farm Credit Canada (FCC) has received an enhancement to its capital base that will allow for an additional $5 billion in lending capacity.

Organic Producers Looking at Slim Profits

ARTICLE
Farmers that produce decent yields will still make a profit. But farmers with sub-par yields could struggle this year.

A+W Starts Move to All-Grass-Fed, All Canadian Beef

ARTICLE
Suppliers lined up to begin transition this spring

Waiting and Weeding are Keys to Organic Success

ARTICLE
After six years, this organic farmer is seeing reduction in some weeds

Cover Crops can Benefit Hot, Dry Soils

ARTICLE
Our research shows that cover crops increased the biological health of soils in the study area within two years. – Rajan Ghimire

Gluten-Free Oat Processor Planned in Sask.

ARTICLE
Avena Foods Ltd. announced today it would build at Rowatt, where its partner Best Cooking Pulses operates.

Surplus Leaves Organic Prices Flat or Lower

ARTICLE
Imports of organic feed grain from the U.S. are keeping a lid on prices in Canada.

Hemp Demand Goes Organic

ARTICLE
“It’s consumer demand,” Shwaluk said. “Our challenge is finding enough organic growers to leap into something new and try a specialty crop.”

Mexico Wants Canadian Oats

ARTICLE
Mexico’s largest oat manufacturer is calling for Canadian oat producers to explore new varieties and increase acreage in order to keep up with global demand.

The Challenge of Starting a Farm From Scratch

ARTICLE
A young farmer continues to find ways into farming – driven by sound economics.

Flat Out Food: Canada’s oldest wheat enjoys a revival thanks to Saskatchewan organic farming family

ARTICLE
“Red Fife is more difficult to grow agronomically, but it has that great taste and Slow Food story behind it.”

Co-operative Model Used in Attempt to Buy Farm

ARTICLE
The Sunrise Community Farm Co-op wants to buy an Alberta farm as part of an effort to maintain its rural sustainability.

Testing the Cover Crop Hypothesis

ARTICLE
Agronomy researchers are catching up with what farmers are doing in their fields.

Alberta Program to Cost-Share Grain Dryer Upgrades

ARTICLE
Applicants under previous FEAP plan eligible

What are your barley research priorities

ARTICLE
A key objective of the National Barley Research Strategy is to identify, and quantify, the research of highest importance to farmers.

Crop Insurance: What’s New in 2020?

ARTICLE
The organic sector, farmers with extended grazing and high-value crop growers can all expect more insurance options this year.

Kellogg’s says pre-harvest glyphosate is not ‘grrreat’

ARTICLE
The maker of iconic cereal brands like Corn Flakes and Froot Loops has taken this position as part of a larger program to reduce pesticide use within its supply chain.

Canadian Government Puts out Tender for “Buy Canadian” Campaign

ARTICLE
The government aims to develop a national approach to better connect Canadians with and instill pride in Canada's food system and its agriculture, food, and seafood products.

Nestle to Source Plant Proteins from Winnipeg

ARTICLE
Nestle will buy pea and canola proteins from a 20,000-tonne-per-year Merit plant to be built by the end of this year in Winnipeg.

What Roquette Wants: Prepping for the Pea Growing Season

ARTICLE
Roquette will be contracting peas through an identity-preserved system, requiring that farmers stick to certain production practices. Farmers will be required to complete an Environmental Farm Plan if they don’t have one already

Organic Feed Market Poised for Significant Growth

ARTICLE
The global organic feed market size is estimated at US$6.8 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach US$10.1 billion by 2025.

Beyond Meat Eyes Prairies for Pea Protein

ARTICLE
Beyond Meat wants more peas from the Prairies.

As Risks Rise, Farmers try new Approach to Yields

ARTICLE
More farmers are now looking harder at what they can do with the resources under their control to reduce their costs of production without unduly reducing yields.

Organic crop practices affect long-term soil health

ARTICLE
The study breaks down how specific components of soil health – such as the abundance and activity of soil animals and soil stability – affect crop productivity.

Unique farm succession plan moves forward

ARTICLE
A Saskatchewan couple hand-picks their successors, ensuring the operation is farmed the way they would prefer

Manitoba Protein Challenge

ARTICLE
Do you have a great idea for a new protein product?

Organic Trade Group’s Fund to Help With Farm Fees

ARTICLE
The Canada Organic Trade Association (COTA) has set up a new fund it hopes will spare some change in Canadian crop production.

Getting off the Soil Degradation Curve

ARTICLE
A soil health advocate says we must break the cycle that sees productivity drop as food demand increases.

Bees Cannot Live on Canola and Alfalfa Alone

ARTICLE
‘Agriculture blooms for one month a year’ and so maintaining pockets of natural food sources is critical.

As Plant Protein Surges, What’s in Store for Pulses?

ARTICLE
Companies are making big bets by capitalizing on the new craze as consumer preferences change, but the issue has shown to be divisive.

Managing Risk in a Bad Harvest Year

ARTICLE
Make sure you know your insurance details before you brave the snow to pick up that crop.

Grazing Management Pays Off

ARTICLE
Grazing is the fastest way to build soils using a perennial polyculture, said Kenyon.

Stable Prices for Most Organics in 2019

ARTICLE
Producers with early contracts received good prices, especially for organic crops such as oats and flax.

Weather plays key role in micro-organism growth

ARTICLE
If you feed the micro-organisms in the soil, they will feed us.

Researchers get their hands dirty in one of the last frontiers of science

ARTICLE
Soil has about 100 million bacteria and a million fungi per teaspoon, but how they work together isn't clear.

Mandate letter from Prime Minister to ag minister Bibeau

ARTICLE
Below is the text of the mandate letter for federal agriculture minister Marie-Claude Bibeau. The Prime Minister's office released the mandate letters for all ministers December 13.

Lack of acres dampens organic canola demand

ARTICLE
Some wonder if producers might be considering a return to the crop, despite the problems caused by the proliferation of GM canola.

Make your own seed initiative enters its ninth year

ARTICLE
Manitoba’s Participatory Plant Breeding program turns farmers into plant breeders.

Hemp’s Sustainable Success Rises with use of Whole Plant

ARTICLE
Field production of hemp for CBD oil, cooking oil, protein, fibre and animal feed might soon become an important part of prairie agriculture.

Rise of Oat Milk May Lift Demand

ARTICLE
Oat milk is all the rage these days, but will that mean anything at the farmgate?

FCC Report Sees Opportunities for Pulse Exports

ARTICLE
The report stated Canada was the world's fifth largest agricultural exporter in 2018, with about 35 per cent of those exports, worth almost C$34 billion, going to the U.S.

Kenyon: A Recipe for Regenerative Agriculture

ARTICLE
It is not a quick fix. It is, however, a long-term solution to a lot of the problems in agriculture.

Family Strives for Healthier Food

ARTICLE
“We went to organics because it wasn’t penciling out conventionally. Initially it was the economics,” said Dave.

From oat field to coffee shop: The latest non-dairy star is grown in Canada

ARTICLE
Oat milk sales up 250% in Canada in the past year.

SaskOrganics’ Releases Organic Research Priorities Report

ARTICLE
Based on the survey results, ten subject areas have been identified by organic producers in Saskatchewan as their top research priorities.

Study Finds Burnout a Real Risk for Producers

ARTICLE
University of Guelph data shows many are on the verge of burnout, especially when financial and workload stress is high.

Safe Grain Storage After a Tough Harvest

ARTICLE
Safe storage is a combination of both the temperature of the grain and the moisture level at which it is stored.

Homegrown ‘Boutique Wheat’

ARTICLE
Breeding program lets farmers participate in breeding wheat and oat varieties suited to organic production.

Why Fall is a Great Time to Soil Test

ARTICLE
Fall is really the perfect time to sample, as soils are cooling later into fall, slowing down microbial activity.

Quality premiums, discounts to widen in organic crops post-harvest

ARTICLE
One oat miller in Saskatchewan said organic oat yields and quality have been good in spite of bad weather.

Digging into the Cost of Drying Grain

ARTICLE
Having enough drying capacity is critical in a year like this one, but it still helps to have a handle on the costs.

Organic wheat prices not shaken by rough harvest weather

ARTICLE
“Prices might go up, but because of the carryover I don’t think they’ll skyrocket,” said Breault.

Mechanical Issues Often Cause Grain Dryer Fires

ARTICLE
Preventive maintenance can help reduce risk of loss of grain — and equipment — due to fire.

The Cover Crop Triangle Simplifies Finding the Right Fit

ARTICLE
By thinking in this species selection “triangle” farmers can quickly narrow down the species options.

USC Canada is Now SeedChange

ARTICLE
We help you contribute to a global movement of farmers fighting for justice, health and sustainability.

Why do Canadians Eat Organic?

ARTICLE
In one year, from 2017-18, the number of organic producers in Canada increased by 21 percent.

Organic Agriculture and the Sustainable Development Goals

ARTICLE
The report shows examples of how our food systems can have a direct impact on our chances of achieving these goals.

Plant Scientist Recognized for Contributions

ARTICLE
The Organic Science Award is awarded to an individual who has demonstrated a significant impact through their research in organic agriculture.

A Grain Revival

ARTICLE
For a long period, bread remained unchanged. Now processors are tasked with using specialty grains to add nutritional value while keeping labels clean for consumers.

As rain delays 2019 Prairie harvest, organic prices remains flat

ARTICLE
Wet conditions this spring caused delays for farmers trying to plant their crops.

Why Marketing is the Test, No Matter How Great Your Idea

ARTICLE
“It’s a mind-shift,” says value-add pro Gary Morton. Success takes groundwork, strategic planning… and money

Major Food Processor Wants Reduction in Pesticide Use

ARTICLE
“We are working to reduce the need for synthetic pesticides”: General Mills.

Canada Organic Trade Association Launches the Support Organic Change Fund

ARTICLE
“With the aim of supporting the continued growth of organic farming in Canada, the Canada Organic Trade Association is pleased to announce the Support Organic Change Fund to address barriers identified by the industry,”

Organic Week 10th Anniversary

ARTICLE
The Globe and Mail is running a special Organic Week Insert in this weekend's paper!

Compost Key to Sequestering Carbon in the Soil

ARTICLE
Study Dug Deep to Uncover Which Agricultural Systems Store the Most Carbon

Climate Action Incentive Fund

ARTICLE
Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises Project Stream

Survey: Agriculture and Climate Change

ARTICLE
USC Canada and the NFU are working together to develop a three-year campaign to create support for climate solutions in the agriculture sector, and promote change at a policy level.

Calculating a Good Cover Crop Plan

ARTICLE
Set yourself up for success when it comes to cover crops.

Cover Crops, Compost and Carbon

ARTICLE
The study showed that cover cropping annually – no matter the type of plant grown – greatly benefits the soil.

Son of Farm Activists Finds His Way Home

ARTICLE
On the Farm: Organic farming comes naturally to this producer, who works with parents Nettie Wiebe and Jim Robbins

Organic Crop Prices Soft Ahead of Harvest

ARTICLE
Organic commodities have been put under pressure price-wise ahead of harvest due to co-operative weather and higher-than-expected yields.

Late Crops Concern Producers

ARTICLE
Crops across many parts of the Prairies appear late so far this year, causing concern among farmers as potential killing frosts approach.

Ottawa Allocates $2 Million to Oat Breeding

ARTICLE
Ottawa will invest $1,982,915 in prairie oat breeding initiatives — money that will be used to support variety development work.

Hands-On Plant Breeding: Farmers Help Select New Plant Lines

ARTICLE
Since 2011, organic farmers from across Canada have been making their own breeding selections.

Planning Helps Keep Harvest Safe

ARTICLE
Harvest is a stressful time of year — things have to get done, but it’s not a time for cutting corners when it comes to farm safety.

Major food processor wants reduction in pesticide use

ARTICLE
“We are working to reduce the need for synthetic pesticides”: General Mills.

Prairie organics bounce back

ARTICLE
In 2013, organic agriculture in Western Canada was suffering. The industry was losing producers and struggling to attract new entrants. The suffering is now over.

Rotary hoes control weeds with limited impact

ARTICLE
Whether used before or after seeding, this mechanical weed control tool can crack crusts and break resistance

Research studies best way to apply manure

ARTICLE
Soil science professor Jeff Schoenau and his research team — also known as the poo crew — are in the second year of a five-year study trying to find the optimal methods of applying manure to a field

Sask. OYF Finalists Choose the Organics Route

ARTICLE
The rural lifestyle is important for the young couple, who farm 2,590 acres and custom graze 100 cow/calf pairs.

Expert Encourages Regenerative Practices

ARTICLE
Kris Nichols says conventional farmers have no excuses, suggesting time is running out to adapt to a changing climate.

Organic Demand Mostly Quiet, though Feed Grains Seem Strong

ARTICLE
Dry conditions on the Prairies and wet conditions in the East have created higher demand for feed grains such as oats.

New Report Highlights Prairies as a Significant Contributor to Canadian Organics

OUR NEWS
COTA's latest report shows continued growth in Prairie organic operations and acreage.

Organic-Raised Brothers Take over Family Farm

ARTICLE
An accident with farm chemicals prompted Clem and Chandra Schraefel to go organic when their sons were very young
.

COTA Applauds Creation of a Canadian Food Policy Advisory Council

ARTICLE
COTA has been advocating for this council to ensure that good governance of the Food Policy occurs.

Federal Funding Supports Organic Trade

ARTICLE
COTA has been awarded $992,000 over three years through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership’s Agri-Marketing Program.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative June Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
In this teleconference we talked about new organic data, market updates, and final evaluation results!

New Report Highlights Prairie Organic Grain Initiative as a Key Player to Sector Resilience

OUR NEWS
With the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative coming to a close, an evaluation of the program and it's effectiveness has been released.

Organic Commodity Prices Holding Firm After Falling

ARTICLE
One commodity group in Vancouver said its feed barley was about C$8 per bushel for Alberta

Prairie pulse processing still in next-year country

ARTICLE
But that could change as ‘supercluster’ hands out first $40 million to spur processing on the Prairies

Hairy Vetch Cover Crops Provide Mulch, Control Weeds

ARTICLE
Managing mulches is necessary so there’s enough to seed into or at the very least covering soil over winter.

Replacing U.S. Imports of Organic Soybeans Unlikely

ARTICLE
The rapid growth of U.S. organic livestock production has resulted in massive imports of soymeal.

Close-to-Home Organic Marketing Encouraged

ARTICLE
One industry insider urges exporters not to ignore the United States, while another emphasizes domestic processors

What’s Good About Soil?

ARTICLE
Soil health indicators often relate to properties that you can’t see

Supply Glut Dragging Down Organics Market

ARTICLE
“It’s that time of year. Prices always come down around seeding time,” Scott Shiels of Grain Millers Canada says.

Protein Industries Canada Opens Call for Proposals; $40 Million in Funding Available

ARTICLE
The deadline to submit interest is by midnight on June 28, 2019. A second call for proposals will take place the beginning of September.

U.S. Demand for Organic Livestock Feed Continues to Climb

ARTICLE
Demand for US organic poultry and livestock feed continues to growth pushing for an increase in production and in the imports of organic feed grains, says economist.

#SoilYourUndies Campaign Launched to Promote Healthy Soil

ARTICLE
For this year’s National Soil Conservation Week, which runs April 21-27, the SCCC is ramping up its efforts to get the word out about soil.

Canadian GMO Escapes Common: Report

ARTICLE
That’s prompted a call for more regulatory oversight and deregistering GM alfalfa

Organic Price Market Outlook

ARTICLE
Get an update on organic grain prices with Sustainable Grain CEO, Brenda Tjaden.

Organic Farmers Don’t Get a Pass on Clubroot

ARTICLE
"The best defence is to follow a crop rotation that leaves at least two years between mustard crops." - Brent Flaten

Climate Change Top Ag Issue for Canadians

ARTICLE
A recent and innovative public opinion study has found that Canadians are most interested in one topic related to agriculture — climate change.

Organic Wheat Varieties Waiting in the Registration Gate

ARTICLE
Registration trials will have to wait for farm-developed organic wheat varieties while changes are made to the proposed trial design.

Room to Grow Organic

ARTICLE
Farmers are upping their organic output, but they’re still a long way from meeting the demand of the two-thirds of Canadians who sometimes or always shop for organic.

Regenerative Agriculture and the Importance of Interrelationships in Soils

ARTICLE
Soil health educator Joel Williams of Integrated Soils discussed a wide variety of topics relating to soil biology, intercropping, crop diversity, and more!

The Economic Merits of More Organic Acres

ARTICLE
Learn about the macro-economics of organics on the prairies with Sustainable Grain CEO, Brenda Tjaden.

Glyphosate Residues Snare Organics

ARTICLE
Europeans are finding trace amounts of glyphosate in organic shipments from Canada.

Flat Out Food: Zak Organics a Saskatchewan Snack Food Success Story

ARTICLE
Transitioning into the snack food industry was a natural progression for the Zak family.

Trials Aim to Find Soybeans that will Thrive Under Organic Farming Conditions

ARTICLE
A four-year, multi-location study aims to find organic soybean varieties suited for Ontario and Manitoba.

Can Large Organic Farms Stay True to the Spirit of the Sector?

ARTICLE
"We do feel strongly and passionately that a big part of what we do on this Earth is to show a way to do things without chemicals and fertilizer.” – Trevor Heide.

Organic Production an Economic Winner

ARTICLE
Know your cost of production per bushel, rather than per acre.

The Water Question

ARTICLE
Should you be more concerned about drought tolerance, or water-use efficiency?

Soil Erosion Costs Farmers $3.1 Billion a Year in Yield Loss: Scientist

ARTICLE
“This (soil erosion) is still happening…. Have we learned anything in the last 80 years?”

The Avoidable Food-Waste Crisis

ARTICLE
Almost 60% of food produced in Canada is wasted.

The Hazards of Harvesting Hemp

ARTICLE
Legalization of cannabis for recreational use has made way for a CBD industry to take root in Canada.

Stronger Pesticide Regulations Likely Needed to Protect all Bee Species

ARTICLE
Wild bees are probably more important for pollination of food crops than managed honeybees.

Scientists say it’s all about the soil

ARTICLE
The concept of soil health depends on what the soil is being used for — its function and functionality

USDA Outlines First-Ever Rule for GMO Labeling

ARTICLE
The new requirements will provide some consistency and a clear plan for food companies that now need to overhaul their labels.

Organic Agriculture in the Prairies – 2017 Data

OUR NEWS
New report highlights growth in organic operations and acreage across the Prairies.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative November Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
Hear Jill Guerra, COTA, share results from the Organic Agriculture in the Prairies - 2017 Data Report

Fertilizers’ impact on soil health compared

ARTICLE
"If you think of soil as a heart, manure is the lifeblood going through it." - Ekrem Ozlu

Prairie Organic Market Reports

OUR NEWS
A series of reports by the Canada Organic Trade Association (COTA) – commissioned by the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative – provides insights on the organic markets of each Prairie province.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative October Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
Hear Bruce Burnett from Glacier Farm Media give a grain and oilseed market outlook and find out some POGI evaluation results with Robyn McLean from Tapestry Evaluation and Strategy.

Building up the soil in your fields

ARTICLE
Changing your crop rotation and management can change the content of our soil

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative September Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
The Canadian Organic Growers undertook the Agri-Risk project to examine the risks and costs of transitioning to organic crop and livestock production.

Cover Crop Grazing 101: Get Your Plan Together

ARTICLE
Grazing and cover crops can fast track fields to measurable higher levels of soil health! And there's no better way to make cover crops pay than to include grazing with them. This article provides some top notch basic information, especially for dryland areas.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative June Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
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.

2016 Organic Agriculture In The Prairies Report

OUR NEWS
Organic certification bodies across Canada provided 2016 operation and acreage data to the Canada Organic Trade Association (COTA), who in turn compiled, analyzed, and produced the report, with support and insights from POGI and sector experts.

Cash Cropping with Intercrops

AUDIO
Recorded at Manitoba Ag Days in January, 2018, Colin Rosengren, a Producer in Midale, SK shares his story "Cash Cropping with Intercrops" 

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative May Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
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!

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative April Teleconference: Organic Science Cluster Call – Part II

OUR NEWS
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!

Organic Science Cluster Call – Part I

OUR NEWS
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

NEWS
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

OUR NEWS
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

ARTICLE
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

ARTICLE
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

ARTICLE
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 Organics: Think Whole Farm Conference Videos

VIDEOS
The Prairie Organics: Think Whole Farm Conference in Brandon is now history — but not quite. They are posting some of the video presentations to their YouTube channel. Check them out here!

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative February Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
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!

New Study Shows Soil on Organic Farms Store Larger Amounts of Carbon

ARTICLE
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

OUR NEWS
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!

Perennial Grain Serves up Rich Flavour, With a Side of Sustainability

ARTICLE
The first loaves of bread made from Kernza have been gobbled up in Manitoba.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative November Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
On the November teleconference call, Elizabeth Crawford of FoodNavigator-USA presented an update on the organic plant-protein market. Click here to listen to the presentation and view the PowerPoint!

New Report Highlights Organic Acres on Prairies

ARTICLE
There are 1.4 million certified acres and 1,499 organic operations across the three Prairie provinces.

Plant Breeding: Selecting for Success

ARTICLE
Participatory Plant Breeding program allows farmers to select their ideal varieties.

Organic Grain Bids Hold Steady at Harvest Time

ARTICLE
‘Low yields, good quality’ have been the story of this organic growing year.

Can Organic No Till Work in the Field?

ARTICLE
Environmental benefit is part of organic market value, but organic weed management usually means tillage, commonly considered a black mark for soil health. Is there a middle ground?

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative October Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
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!

Organic Grain Firm Picks up Elevator Near Border

NEWS
A Minneapolis startup in the organic grain business has bought a northwestern North Dakota elevator that further expands its southern Prairie catchment.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative September Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
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!
SK

SaskOrganics Publishes ‘Saskatchewan Organic Production Research Priorities 2017’ Report

NEWS
In the fall of 2016, SaskOrganics conducted a survey to determine the research priorities of organic farmers in Saskatchewan for organic production. This report summarizes the results of the survey.

Hail Damage Kept in Check in August

ARTICLE
All hail the relative absence of hail on the Prairies. That could well be the celebratory cry for farmers with the number of damaging hailstorms tracking below the five-year average, according to the Canadian Crop Hail Association.

Keeping a Pulse on the Soil

ARTICLE
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.

The Making of a Green Manure Mixture

ARTICLE
For organic grain farmers without livestock such as Carnegie Farms north of Brandon, green manure has become a mainstay for nutrient management.

Increase Crop Diversity, Reduce Risk by Intercropping: Overyielding

ARTICLE
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.

Organic Agriculture in the Prairies: 2015 Statistics

OUR NEWS
The Prairie organic report details organic operations including primary producers and processors/handlers, organic acreage and crop types, and province-specific trends and statistics.

Organic Management in the Prairie Provinces

ARTICLE
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

ARTICLE
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.

Organic, Conventional Farmers Encounter Different Weed Issues

ARTICLE
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

ARTICLE
Weeds will always be with us. They are a natural part of the agro-ecosystem.

Production Videos

OUR NEWS
Watch the Pivot and Grow Production Videos to see what organic grain production can do for you.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative May Teleconference Call

OUR NEWS
Stuart McMillan provides an analysis of organic grain market prices and their influences.

Organic Grain Prices

OUR NEWS
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

OUR NEWS
Do you have questions about organic transition, production, or marketing? Call us and talk to an expert today!

Need a Nitrogen Fix? Consider Fababeans for Your Next Crop

ARTICLE
Organic farmers who are looking for the biggest nitrogen gain from adding a pulse to their rotation might want to consider fababeans.

Nutrient Density Comparison

ARTICLE
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

OUR NEWS
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!
AB

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative Call of the Land Interview

OUR NEWS
Learn about some of the amazing resources that the Prairie Organic Grain Initiative has developed for transitioning and organic farmers.

New Resource: Green Manure Tool Kit

OUR NEWS
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.

Farm Credit Canada Field Management Software Discount

OUR NEWS
Prairie Organic Farmers receive an exclusive 40% discount! Record, organize, and analyze your organic field records for better results. Enter all your details from planting to harvest.

Prairie Organic Grain Initiative Monthly Teleconference Calls

OUR NEWS
Join us on the second Wednesday of every month to hear from and speak with local farmers, experts, and researchers of the industry.
MB

Peat Soils – How do we Manage Them for Organic Agriculture?

ARTICLE
Due to the instability of peat soils, good soil management practices should be used. Learn how to manage peat soils for organic agriculture.
MB

Glenlea Research Station Celebrates 25th Year of Organic Research

NEWS
Check out the 25th anniversary video for research highlights!

Grain Quality: From Producer to Consumer

VIDEO
Find out how you can ensure the quality of your grains.

Consider Time When Planting Green Manure Mixtures

ARTICLE
Green manure mixtures are where it all begins when it comes to organic production.
AB

Organic Inspection is Done!

FROM A FARMER
Inspection experience from a new farmer

Weeds: The First Emergence After Disturbance

VIDEO
Weeds can tell you a lot about soil life. Learn how from Joanna and Sam.

Intercropping: Utilizing Every Acre

VIDEO
Learn about the benefits of intercropping on organic farms.

Planning Crop Rotations: The Diversity is What Makes You Sustainable

VIDEO
Learn how you can maintain soil fertility and manage weeds through crop rotation.

The Organic Ratio: Eyes Per Acre

VIDEO
Learn how you can get to know your organic farm.

Strategies for Successful & Sustainable Weed Management

VIDEO
Listen to Katherine Stanley and Scott Shiels discuss the best ways to manage weeds.

Weed Management in Organic Cropping Systems

RECORDED WEBINAR
Learn about the methods of weed control commonly employed by organic producers
AB

10 Things I Learned In Our First Year Farming

FROM A FARMER
by Keely Wohlgemuth of The Z Spread Farm, Organic Grain farmer at Wanham, Alberta

Do you Have a Nutrient Management Plan for Your Farm?

OPPORTUNITY
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

OUR NEWS
Prairie Organic Grain Initiative receives research funding which will support farmers in developing farm nutrient management plans.

Get Maximum Benefit from Green Manures

ARTICLE
Learn how Green Manures can benefit your farm and what you can do to get the maximum benefit.

Growing Organics on the Prairies

OUR NEWS
Canadian Organic Trade Associations publishes new data on organic production on the prairies.
MB

Prairie Organics: Think Whole Farm Presentations

VIDEOS
If you missed any of the great talks, you have another chance to view some of the presentations.
MB

Manitoba Ag Days Presentations

VIDEOS
Hear it from the farmer's mouth as experienced organic farmers discuss their challenges and successes in transitioning.
AB

Organic Agronomy

OPPORTUNITY
Take your agronomy skills to the next level with in-person training and mentorship support on organic farming.