It’s increasingly difficult to find processing capacity for Ontario cattle.

What’s the future for Ontario’s beef herd?

Commodity organization says elimination of Ryding-Regency Meat Packers as a cattle-buyer hurts an industry already constrained by inadequate processing capacity

Reading Time: 3 minutes Ontario beef farmers are struggling to find buyers for their cattle with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s (CFIA) recent decision to revoke federal slaughter, processing and export licenses for Ryding-Regency Meat Packers and affiliates. According to Beef Farmers of Ontario (BFO), the elimination of Ryding-Regency as a viable purchaser comes at a time when the […] Read more

Farm acquisitions can be more challenging tax-wise than succession plans.

Accessing Ontario’s small business tax rate

Both passive and active income can change your tax rate, which can be a surprise for some farms

Reading Time: 3 minutes Farms are typically small businesses entitled to the small business tax rate each year. But farm finance experts say even relatively small farms can lose access to small business tax rates through several means. Why it matters: Under current rules, even small farms can lose access to small business tax rate in some circumstances. As […] Read more

The U7AG from Forward Robotics Inc. This craft is being designed to address regulatory concerns, while being suitable for larger acreage Canadian farms. According to the company, the craft is priced competitively with an 80-foot pull-type sprayer or in the area of $50,000.

What’s piloting interest in sprayer drones?

Users say flexibility, lower costs are key factors in growing interest despite technological and regulatory limitations

Reading Time: 5 minutes Drones are now being used for spray applications in countries around the world. And while not commercially commonplace in Canada yet, companies and ag-service providers continue investing time and resources in the technology. Despite ongoing technical issues and unanswered practical questions, some think sprayer drones can bring a variety of agronomic, health, and human resource […] Read more

New tax rules can especially affect taxes relating to young people while away at school and not directly working on the farm.

How the government is taxing income-splitting

What farm businesses need to know heading into year-end

Reading Time: 2 minutes In 2017, the federal government proposed changes to its tax on split income (TOSI). Since then, due in part to opposition by farmers and farm groups, those changes evolved. Now, after coming into effect for the 2018 tax year, financial advisers have more concrete knowledge of how TOSI actually applies. Why it matters: Tax on […] Read more

Solartech is providing electric tractors in North America, but they are best suited for small farm uses so far.

Will electric tractors ever dethrone diesel?

There is plenty of space for electric power in smaller, lower-torque jobs

Reading Time: 4 minutes Despite exponential increases in the technology’s effectiveness — and widespread use in other industries — battery power and charging challenges continue to limit the scalability of electrically-driven farm equipment. That doesn’t mean diesel will always reign supreme, though. According to three Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) technology experts, electric motors have […] Read more

Cattle are also at risk from diseases carried by ticks, which are expanding their range.

Risks to livestock increasing as ticks expand their territory

Although media reports focus on the threat of tick-borne diseases on humans, owners of cattle and farmers should be aware of the risks they pose for livestock

Reading Time: 4 minutes Livestock producers must be alert and become more aware of new disease pressures that might affect their animals as the tick population reaches into new areas. Why it matters: Animal diseases carried by ticks aren’t well known in Ontario yet, as they are just arriving. Many Ontario residents are aware of Lyme disease and other […] Read more

The value of farmland means that there sometimes needs to be creativity in dissolving partnerships.

When death and divorce come to the farm

Setting up expectations make disentangling family and farm easier

Reading Time: 4 minutes Death and divorce are not the most uplifting subjects, but farm families need to think about them. The former is inevitable, the latter is common, and both can have devastating effects on farm businesses. According to legal and financial experts, though, there are ways to help protect the family farm. Why it matters: Untimely death […] Read more

Western bean cutworms cause damage to corn and other crops.

Western bean cutworm laying low so far

Western bean cutworms haven’t been a major issue this year but their full impact is still unknown

Reading Time: 3 minutes Will western bean cutworm (WBC) be to 2019 what DON was to 2018? According to the evidence thus far, probably not. In fact, WBC appears sparser than expected. That said, Tracey Baute, field crop entomologist and WBC expert with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, says several factors have combined to make […] Read more

Trade disputes between the United States and China – as well as Canada and China – are creating uncertainty for the overall global economy.

An economic reality check for Canada’s farm sector

Chaotic trade and financial environments dominate first half of 2019

Reading Time: 4 minutes Many analysts predicted market uncertainty for 2019 and so far, those predictions have come true. With trade wars, mixed-result political dealings, and an overall unstable global economy, the situation for Canadian farmers continues to be concerning – though not inherently dire. Why it matters: Uncertainty about markets, politics and the global economy are causing anxiety […] Read more

Can sustainable agriculture practices offer a direct line to Europe?

Sustainability programs offer assurance to European buyers, but they can mean more work for producers

Reading Time: 5 minutes Mention the word “certification” to farmers and all they hear is “more paperwork.” But Grain Farmers of Ontario says such programs really spell improved market access. In fact, they will be critical to reaching important markets, such as the European Union. The good news is sustainability programs have already been enjoying some success in Canada. […] Read more