Happy New (Open Market) Crop Year!


I was combing through my Twitter feed last night and thought that it felt a little like Y2K — would the stroke of midnight bring certain doom as many monopoly supporters would have had us believe or would the sun rise, just like any other day? Of course, today — the first day of the new crop year and the first day of an open market for wheat and barley — dawned not to fanfare, disaster or much else other than a few photo ops, many Tweets and, well, farmers doing what they have to do to run a farm. In many ways, today is like any other.

But today is also drastically different. CWB, note the lack of “the”, is now a voluntary grain marketing business. There is a new sign up on Main Street, Winnipeg, and there are definite changes to how farmers now market their wheat and barley, whether through CWB or otherwise.

There are also new resources for farmers to help navigate this new open market. Those interested in selling into the U.S. may want to check out Canada-U.S. Grain and Seed Trade for details on how to make the transaction run smoothly. Cargill has also put together a good FAQs segment on its website www.changingprairielandscape.ca. CWB has outlined its changes and announced initial prices, too.

On our end, in the coming weeks RealAgriculture.com will delve a little deeper into how marketing changes impact how you market wheat and barley and what pitfalls to watch out for.

In the meantime, how will you mark today’s historic change? If you’ve already been wading in to the new changed market, let us know about any hiccups, unforeseen problems or significant changes you’ve noticed.

Happy new crop year to all!


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