Greenhouses keep growing in Ontario, meaning greater energy demands.

New energy efficiency funding program available for greenhouses

Electrical agency issues targeted call for proposals

Reading Time: 3 minutes The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) is looking to help fund energy-efficiency measures at Ontario greenhouses through a specialized call for proposals under its existing Grid Innovation Fund. The arms-length Crown corporation responsible for Ontario’s electricity market recently published a new “Greenhouse Energy Profile Study,” which included the call for proposals. Why it matters: This […] Read more

In 2012, Dennis Aarts and family purchased McCully’s Hill farm and roadside market and began direct-marketing their pork.

Aarden Farms handed Pork Industry Leadership Award

Ontario Pork Congress recognizes owners of McCully’s Hill Farm Market

Reading Time: 2 minutes A St. Marys-area farm family that, in 2012, moved beyond pork production and cash cropping to take control of a long-established direct-to-consumer roadside market was awarded the 2019 Ontario Pork Congress (OPC) Pork Industry Leadership Award. The award was presented by outgoing OPC President Kirk McLean to Dennis Aarts, of Aarden Farms — the only […] Read more

Sows wait to eat in the group-housing system at Zeldenrust farm near Drayton.

Animal welfare a focus during new hog barn construction

The extra cost of sow lift crates pays off in reduced piglet mortality

Reading Time: 5 minutes During the recent 2019 edition of the Shakespeare Swine Seminar, there were presentations from two similar-sized farrow-to-finish operators who, when making decisions about new barn construction, opted to included innovations aimed at boosting animal welfare. Why it matters: Enhanced livestock care regulations, coupled with a more intense focus from the public on how food is […] Read more

African swine fever has proved to cause high mortality in herds as it moves around the world.

Vietnam study tour aims to strengthen swine fever strategy

American group to try to pin down prevention options

Reading Time: 3 minutes An American hog health expert hopes to learn about common vectors for African swine fever transmission on a trip to Vietnam. Dr. Paul Sundberg, executive director of the United States-based Swine Health Information Center told the Shakespeare Swine Seminar that he also hoped to clarify cleaning and dis- infection protocols before repopulating an affected production […] Read more

Milking systems, especially, are providing more data on dairy farms.

The uncertain future of dairy data governance

Farmers advised to ask questions when buying new technology

Reading Time: 4 minutes With high-tech robot barns leading the way, and many dairy farmers with older-style milking systems adding sensors, the collection of real-time data about cow care has exploded in the past few years. The rapid increase of sensors and in-barn artificial intelligence (AI) has given rise to new issues previously not considered. Why it matters: Dairy […] Read more


The new barn at Maplevue Farms.

Public invited to experience new dairy barn

North Perth farmers plan two distinct new-construction open house events

Reading Time: 3 minutes Throwing open the doors of a newly built dairy barn for others in the agricultural sector to see is common practice; throwing open the doors for the general public is much rarer. The Johnston families of North Perth, operators of Maplevue Farms, plan to do both on Oct. 25 and Oct. 26. Why it matters: […] Read more

There is significant capacity to raise more cattle in Northern Ontario and a new beef processing plant could help encourage that development.

North Bay beef processor targets halal market

Future plans include a federally inspected kill plant in province’s northeast

Reading Time: 3 minutes The Ukrainian owners behind a new meat processing plant currently under construction in North Bay hope to start processing cattle in December. Products from the federally inspected plant will be aimed at the halal market, locally and internationally. Why it matters: It is hoped that the location of a cattle processing plant in Northern Ontario […] Read more

American cases of Senecavirus have started with scours in younger pigs, but in Ontario the cases were first found in sow barns.

Ontario’s senecavirus outbreak in hogs differed from U.S.

Two southwestern Ontario sow barns were infected in June 2019

Reading Time: 3 minutes Updated Oct. 24 Ontario’s latest cases of the obscure Senecavirus gave the hog farming sector a chance to practice managing a new disease outbreak. Why it matters: The most significant known risk is that, based on clinical signs alone, Senecavirus is indistinguishable from foot-and-mouth disease — meaning that when it’s discovered, all pig travel must […] Read more


Transportation regulations are changing for all major livestock in February.

Trucking group still looking for clarification on new livestock transport rules

Latest changes need to be shared before February implementation: OLTA

Reading Time: 3 minutes [UPDATED Oct. 10, 2019] Efforts to clarify several issues with looming federal livestock hauling regulations are ongoing, attendees at the recent Shakespeare Swine Seminar were told. Ontario Livestock Transporters’ Alliance Executive Director Susan Fitzgerald said that the updated regulations come into effect in February 2020. Why it matters: Significant fines or requirements to change practices […] Read more

Farmer efficiency targets also help with areas of consumer concern.

Consumer concerns driving livestock production discussion

Working towards trouble-free animals are often areas farmers are already working to improve

Reading Time: 4 minutes Areas of consumer concern like climate change and animal welfare are driving the livestock discussion, but farmers are already regularly improving both areas while they make their farms more efficient. That was the message from recent interviews conducted by Farmtario with a member of the leadership team behind Lactanet’s annual ranking of herd management scores […] Read more