Limiting the amount of time a cow is in headlocks, so they can spend time lying or eating has an effect on milk production and cow health.

Just let them be cows

Cow comfort has evolved to include natural behaviours

Reading Time: 3 minutes Less time standing on concrete, less time in headlock gates, less stress and more time expressing natural instincts are the modern-day keys to what is an evolving understanding of cow comfort for dairy cattle. “Let them eat without stress, let them rest without stress, and let them calve without stress,” said world-recognized cow behaviour specialist […] Read more

Marc Bercier with his ALUS award at his farm.

Award-winner values relationships in land preservation

La Ferme Agribec recognized by ALUS Canada for work creating natural areas on farms

Reading Time: 3 minutes Improving the environment or building farming’s reputation among consumers might be possible incentives for getting involved with farmland conservation efforts, but for St-Isidore’s Marc Bercier it’s relationships. Bercier was the winner of this year’s $10,000 Dave Reid Award from Alternative Land Use Services (ALUS) Canada. He’s been involved in ALUS projects for eight years. Why […] Read more

Human travel and lack of vigilance help spread viruses.

Preventing human failings in COVID and African swine fever

Viruses have different superpowers they use to spread among animals and people

Reading Time: 4 minutes With the spread of both COVID-19 and African swine fever (ASF), humans can be their own worst enemies. That message was delivered by South West Ontario Veterinary Services practitioner Dr. George Charbonneau during the recent virtual edition of the 2021 London Farm Show. Why it matters: The North American swine sector is on high alert […] Read more

“No Trespassing” signs aren’t required on farmland, but they are recommended so there’s no ambiguity.

Bill 156 sees court challenge from animal activist groups

Special farmland provisions not new in law

Reading Time: 2 minutes Last year’s passage of the Security of Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act granted special protection to many Ontario livestock producers, but as attendees at the recent 2021 London Farm Show were reminded, it’s nothing new for farmland to be singled out under the law. Nonetheless, several provisions of the new law, Bill 156, are […] Read more

The early Ontario maple syrup run was strong, but length of the season is a concern.

Warm weather could shorten 2021 syrup season

Demand for syrup has increased during the pandemic, as it has for many local foods

Reading Time: 4 minutes Overall maple syrup use is up in Ontario during the COVID-19 pandemic, but restrictions on gatherings and a string of early-season warm days and nights have producers across the province worrying whether they’ll be able to take advantage of that demand. “Most syrup producers are finding ways for people to purchase their syrup safely,” said […] Read more

Sheep farmer Sandi Brock has found an audience of people at home looking for an experience on YouTube.

Farms pivot to guard finances during COVID

Farms have been forced to make changes, with varying levels of success

Reading Time: 4 minutes Agri-food Management Excellence (AME) is looking to the experiences of graduates of its CTEAM (Canadian Total Excellence in Agricultural Management) program to better understand the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the sector’s finances. Norfolk County cash crop and horticulture producer Brett Schuyler, Staffa-area sheep farmer Sandi Brock, and Oxford County goat dairy producer Cheryl […] Read more

Black soldier fly is the most popular insect grown for protein in Europe.

Fitting insect production into current regulations a challenge

Canadian and EU companies call for fewer limits on feedstuffs

Reading Time: 4 minutes Insect-rearing innovators in Canada are ahead of the United States and the European Union when it comes to approvals for use in animal feed products. However, that hasn’t translated into a broad opening up of new markets. In all three jurisdictions, more work is needed to convince regulators and others in the livestock sector about […] Read more

Marsha Rempel, with some of the barns on her farm.

Public pressure halts city’s bid for Welland farm

Expropriation attempt loses support at recent vote

Reading Time: 2 minutes Nationwide public outcry is being credited for helping save City of Welland farmer Marsha Rempel from being forced to sell her 67-acre farm for industrial development. On March 2, city councillors voted 8-3 to put the brakes on an expropriation process which had been initiated in July 2020, and taken another step forward on Dec. […] Read more

The supply chain around organic carrots was the first studied by a new project.

Project aims to study organic value chains

Scale of operation and how it fits with organics is a key consideration

Reading Time: 4 minutes Steady growth in demand for domestic organic food is set to accelerate in the post-COVID reality, according to those who participated in the recent virtual version of the Guelph Organic Conference. A new initiative of the Canadian Organic Growers (COG), funded through the federal government, aims to facilitate bringing additional Canadian acres under organic certification. […] Read more

The ZELP device captures large methane emissions from cows and turns them into carbon dioxide.

European innovations aim to capture waste from cows

There’s a lot of research on feed additives to reduce methane output, but collection devices are starting to show up

Reading Time: 5 minutes European inventors are coming up with what might seem outlandish ways to manage emissions from cattle — collecting the emissions and excretions from both ends. In late 2020, the United Kingdom-based Zero Emissions Livestock Project (ZELP) announced its efforts to equip cattle with halters harbouring a methane-converting fan and filter system. Why it matters: Consumer […] Read more