Sweet corn had a 6.9 per cent yield boost after a diverse cover crop.

The next step for cover crops

Researchers with long-term trials looking at productivity benefits

Reading Time: 2 minutes Long-term cover crop research is moving beyond the basics to more complex interactions between covers and row crops. Projects are now looking at how cover crops affect yield over several years, have an impact on crop quality and the value they could have if farmers get credit for reducing atmospheric carbon. Why it matters: Economically […] Read more

Karen Galbraith, left, and her husband Steve Dolson are in the process of transferring their farm ownership and management to 
Geoff and Sally McMullen, who they didn’t know before the transition process started.

Making non-family business transition work

These two families found a way to make a dairy farm transition succeed

Reading Time: 5 minutes Most farm transitions today happen through succession planning between families, but there are growing examples of how non-farmers are making it work with existing farmers and on their own. FarmSmart, held at the University of Guelph on Jan. 18, presented opportunities for young individuals who don’t come from a farm to be successful in running […] Read more

Many farms across Ontario are already certified under the VBP+ program, which will also qualify for the Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef program.

Beef sustainability program expands across the sector

National program gains more traction in Ontario beef value chain

Reading Time: 3 minutes The Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef’s program will soon be coming to Ontario’s largest beef processing plant — creating more opportunities for beef farmers here to sell their beef at a premium. Gurneesh Bhandal, Cargill Protein’s senior sustainability manager, told the Beef Symposium at FarmSmart recently that the company expects the audit allowing the Cargill […] Read more

It’s likely to be years until we have a completely solid set of best practices for managing soils.

Editorial: Still lots to know about mechanisms of soil health

Reading Time: 3 minutes The maintenance of soil health has come into much greater prominence in the past five to 10 years. That’s an important step — our soils are the basis of civilization and those that have not understood that have had civilizations collapse. Check out the Nile River delta today. We’re a long way from the lack […] Read more

Corn and distillers grains can be used to help replace hay when it is in short supply.

Lowering winter beef cow feed costs

There are opportunities to decrease the highest expense on beef farms

Reading Time: 4 minutes Katie Wood, assistant professor in ruminant nutrition and physiology at the University of Guelph recently offered five tips to lower winter feeding costs in beef herds. Speaking at the Ontario Beef Symposium at the University of Guelph on Jan. 18, Wood outlined the key steps: Test feed; Optimize alternative feeds; Know the herd’s body condition […] Read more


There have been 233 people elected into the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame, and they are recognized on this wall in the Agri-Centre in Guelph.

Four new names added to the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame

Inductees recognized for their life-long legacies in Ontario agriculture

Reading Time: 3 minutes The Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame will induct four new members in June, from across the agriculture sector. John Davis Curtis, Diane Margaret Harkin, (William) Brian Little, and (William) Murray Mills were selected by the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame Association based on their life-long legacies within Ontario agriculture. Inductees must demonstrate visionary leadership, innovation, […] Read more

A Spornado spore trap set up in southern Ontario.

Making better spraying decisions with low-cost, early fungal disease detection

Spornado is being tested across Canada, especially in higher value vegetable crops

Reading Time: 3 minutes It was a call from a client looking for a low-tech method for early detection of a fungal disease in potatoes that charted a new course for Toronto microbiology lab Sporometrics. The resulting innovation, Spornado Sampler, has been called the first reliable, early alert system for fungal crop diseases that’s available to farmers at an […] Read more

The Ridgetown Campus of the University of Guelph educates many in Ontario’s agriculture community.

Ridgetown Campus looking for new director

Ken McEwan will be returning to research and teaching

Reading Time: 2 minutes The search is on for the 11th director of the University of Guelph’s Ridgetown Campus, in preparation for the end of Ken McEwan’s stint. McEwan will be director until June 2020. He will then support new infrastructure initiatives on the University of Guelph’s Ridgetown Campus for a transitionary year, with a focus on completing fundraising […] Read more


The new meat science laboratory includes a student observation deck.

Federally licensed university abattoir upgraded

University of Guelph abattoir helps small research projects get processed

Reading Time: 3 minutes The University of Guelph is home to the only federally licensed university abattoir in Canada. The almost 50-year-old facility recently underwent a $2.5 million overhaul, re-opening last year as a modern meat science laboratory. Why it matters: Large commercial abattoirs find it difficult to accommodate small pilot projects and most smaller plants lack the necessary […] Read more

Pushing back against pot

The rapid expansion of cannabis production in rural areas has prompted residents, farmers and municipalities to call for a slowdown in growth

Reading Time: 5 minutes Ontario’s rapidly growing cannabis production sector is facing a backlash after the addition of many new growing facilities has resulted in interim control bylaws from municipalities and the formation of local protest groups unhappy with smell and traffic. Why it matters: Cannabis production in Canada has grown quickly since legalization a year ago last October. […] Read more