Farmers have been challenged by an inability to market lower-quality corn after last year’s harvest.

Loan program gets extension, funding boost

Changes made to the Commodity Loan Program to help deal with DON-infected corn financial challenges

Changes to the Commodity Loan Program (CLP) have been made to help farmers dealing with extreme harvest issues across the province. Grain Farmers of Ontario (GFO) asked for an extension back in November to assist farmers across the province managing challenges with corn crop quality this year. Why it matters: The CLP changes will help […] Read more

Infection of corn by disease like Gibberella that leads to DON problems has to have specific conditions.

The DON to come – agronomic lessons from 2018

Farmers have new information to consider on hybrid selection, fungicide timing

The vomitoxin problem in Ontario’s 2018 corn crop was more severe than most years and continues to cause problems for producers and buyers. However, the fungus-fostering conditions that caused the issue offer agronomic lessons for managing deoxynivalenol (DON) risk. According to Dale Cowan, senior agronomist and sales manager for AGRIS Co-operative and Wanstead Farmers Co-operative, […] Read more

Corn infected with deoxynivalenol (DON) was more widespread than usual this year in Ontario’s crop.

Corn hybrid testing for DON needs industry support

There is currently no screening program for susceptibility to DON for corn in Ontario

Farmers continue to search for better ways to manage risk of an outbreak of deoxynivalenol (DON) in future corn crops. One of the areas of most interest is figuring out which corn hybrids are most susceptible to infection. There is currently no screening program for vomitoxin in corn hybrids in Ontario. Why it matters: Finding […] Read more

Corn has been discounted across much of Ontario because of high levels of DON. There are challenges in marketing especially high infection level corn.

How the new DON testing cost-share program works

Funds will share half of the cost of DON testing or equipment purchase so farmers can know what they have in their bins

With vomitoxin (DON) levels prevalent in this year’s corn crop, the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA) says a new DON testing cost-sharing initiative will help producers strategically market their grain. Why it matters: OSCIA says the cost-sharing program will help farmers know how severe their deoxynivalenol (DON) issues are, and how to market […] Read more

There remains a significant amount of DON-infected corn in fields in Ontario.

Governments promise help for farmers with DON-infected corn

There are few details yet for the federal-provincial program

The federal and provincial governments have announced steps to help Ontario corn farmers hit by high deoxynivalenol (DON), in their crop through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. Why it matters: Corn farmers in Ontario are continuing to try to get their corn harvested, while dealing with serious quality issues that depending on geography and local buyers, […] Read more


Markus Haerle, chair of the Grain Farmers of Ontario board of directors.

GFO letter addresses corn quality situation

Editor’s note: Grain Farmers of Ontario has issued an open letter to its members addressing some of the challenges with DON-infected corn in Ontario and frustrations boiling to the surface from some farmers. Here’s what it says: An open letter to our GFO farmer-members We are facing one of the most severe outbreaks of DON […] Read more

Inhaled mycotoxins can impair lung function.

Take mycotoxin health hazards seriously

Use masks and gloves when handling mycotoxin-contaminated corn

High rates of mycotoxin in this year’s corn crop might be financially unfortunate – but don’t let it ruin your health. Mycotoxins, that is, can cause major health problems if inhaled through the dust generated during grain harvesting and handling. It’s a hazard that’s neither new nor uncommon, and one that requires extra attention when […] Read more

This year’s Ontario corn crop is showing higher levels of mycotoxins compared to previous years, and caution is advised.

Corn mycotoxin levels high this harvest season

The provincial agriculture department advises special care to limit the effects of various toxins and moulds in feed

It’s a corn crop mycotoxin year. The annual survey conducted by OMAFRA field crop staff in collaboration with the Grain Farmers of Ontario and the Ontario Agri-Business Association has found that 60 per cent of samples tested low (less than two parts per million) for vomitoxin. The mycotoxins that are of concern are produced primarily […] Read more


Figure 1: Gibberella ear rot – Red/pink mould which often begins on ear tip.

Plan to assess corn fields for ear rot and mycotoxin risk

Moulds can be disruptive when fed to livestock, especially hogs

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs has begun sampling grower corn fields to determine ear mould incidence and occurrence of mycotoxins in the grain. The mycotoxins, particularly vomitoxin (DON) produced primarily by Gibberella ear moulds, can be disruptive when fed to livestock, especially hogs. Why it matters: The annual survey is designed […] Read more

Dave Hooker talks about mycotoxins in corn at the Bayer Dead Weeds tour.

Managing corn mycotoxins needs scouting, hybrid choice

Farmer can reduce risk of mycotoxins, including through insect and spore management

Generally dry conditions have reduced the threat of mycotoxins in corn this year, although rains during humid days could change that as corn moves to tasselling and silking. However, Dave Hooker, of the University of Guelph’s Ridgetown College, says that historical monitoring of mycotoxin levels by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs […] Read more