Whenever the holiday falls on a Monday, the rest of the week feels a little off. Case in point, I thought Thursday was Friday even though it was a short week and started this “last day of the work week” column a day early. What gives? Anywho, as the RealAgriculture team struggled into their post-turkey fat pants (OK, maybe that was just me), the week of agriculture happenings took off like a rocket. On the agenda this week — the announcement that Canada and the EU were this close to a done deal on CETA, one that would put a smile on beleaguered cattle and hog producers’ faces, but that “angered and disappointed” the dairy sector. Let’s be clear here, negotiations are a give and take. Dairy has won plenty of times in trade negotiations, it’s time the beef and hog sectors got a break, OK? (See more on the story here). As of Friday morning, the deal is signed (see images of the occasion on John Masswhol’s Twitter feed) — will the provinces (and by provinces I mean Quebec) ratify it? We’ll be keeping tabs on this one for sure.
Then, there’s the schmozzle down in the U.S. of A. As of this morning, our troubled neighbours’ government to the south are flipping the sign from closed to open, and grumbling under their breath about whose fault it is. Any takers on bets to whether or not this happens again? I’m going to go with no, but for Americans’ sake, and especially those in the ag community reeling from the South Dakota blizzard last week, I hope everybody gets their poop in a group and carries on doing what they’re supposed to be doing — governing, not bickering and making their citizens pay for their shouting match.
Moving east, Ontario farmers are knee-deep in harvest, so we’ll forgive them if they missed news of construction starting on the new multi-million dollar dairy research facility going up up the University of Guelph’s Elora research station. Owen Roberts, with the University of Guelph and a weekly columnist here on the site, used this event as the leaping off point for his take this week on the importance of research not just at the university level but on the farm, too. Read that here.
My favourite production post of the week (which just this second I decided is a new feature) goes to Debra’s discussion with Dr. Joe Stookey out of the University of Saskatchewan on two-stage, low-stress weaning of calves. This may just be my inner ag-geek showing, but I loves me some cattle production stuff, and anything to do with calves, noses and milk is a winner in my book. Check out that video here.
Yours in farm-loving,