Category: Farm Management

It’s time for a harvest farm finance check-in

Financial planning and management of your farm business is a year-round activity, but just after harvest is an ideal time to take stock, review where you’re at, and begin planning for next year. I think many times in any small business we are energetic on the planning, but fall flat on the follow up at… Read more »

How high will interest rates rise?

Ever since the great recession of 2008, interest rates have been ‘abnormally’ low. Although there has been noise about rising interest rates, the economic argument has been weak. But the economy is getting stronger, and along with that the argument to raise interest rates is also getting stronger. In this interview RealAg Radio host Shaun… Read more »

Learning to lead in the agribusiness boardroom

For eight years Kay Kuenker was the only woman on the executive team at Dow AgroSciences. That experience has taught her much about how women and men can work together in the agribusiness executive suite. Today, Kuenker works as consultant with her own company, K2Kinetics. At the recent Advancing Women in Agriculture Conference in Niagara Falls,… Read more »

Powerball allows farmers to dream of what if…

There is not a farm in North America that would refuse a major influx of cash if it was awarded to them. There’s cash to get you by, and then there is generational, life-altering cash. This week, the United States Powerball jackpot reached $1.5 billion, and the winning ticket was printed in South Carolina. It… Read more »

4 considerations for choosing the right combine capacity for your farm

Farmers are all about efficiency and productivity as they keep their eyes on profitability. It’s a real accomplishment to make sure you have the right size of equipment for the task at hand. With the cost of machinery and rising interest rates in 2018, this calculation has become even more critical for managing capital purchases… Read more »

Increasing leadership roles for women helps fuel Cargill’s future

In agriculture, women are under represented in leadership roles. How do we change that? For Cargill, one of the world’s largest agribusinesses, change comes in the form of a commitment to achieve gender parity in management by 2030. The goal is to have women occupy 50 per cent of leadership roles in the organization at that… Read more »

Post USMCA, Bank of Canada expected to bump interest rates

It seems like a foregone conclusion, but the Bank of Canada is expected to raise interest rates Wednesday. The market is expecting a 25 basis point hike to 1.75%, which would be the fifth increase since July, 2017. Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz will address the Canadian economy that’s been tempered in the past… Read more »

An organic cattle ranch is at the middle of the Stronach family lawsuit

An organic beef ranch near Gainesville, Florida, is at the centre of a $520 million lawsuit between a father and daughter. Frank Stronach, Canadian billionaire and founder of Magna International, is suing his daughter, former Member of Parliament Belinda Stronach over a number of things, but most notably the misuse of funds and purposely underfunding… Read more »

Don’t let unspoken gender rules get in the way

When it comes to communicating in the workplace — men and women don’t typically speak the same language. According to Sherry Waddingham, president of Mindshift, a Toronto-based workplace communications company, men tend to be more assertive, competitive, look to problem solve and are poor listeners. Women on the other hand, are less assertive, look to share… Read more »

Farmer as identity: the heavy weight of trade deals, succession, and scrutiny

I’m worried about the tone of many conversations I’ve had with dairy farmers recently. Following on the heels of the latest trade deal, many farmers are angry, feeling steamrolled, or, quite frankly, are afraid that their very livelihood is being threatened. It’s not just dairy farmers feeling the pinch, of course — farming carries a … Read more »

Indiana farmer milks 2,200 cows with 36 robots

Can robots effectively milk cows on large U.S. dairy farms? That’s a question Plymouth, Indiana farmer Brian Houin is determined to answer at his family-owned Homestead Dairy operation. Canadian farmers have had tremendous success using robot milkers in smaller dairy operations, but Houin is putting the milking machines to the test on a whole new level. In… Read more »

Dairy School: 20-kilowatt biodigester powers Ontario dairy

Anaerobic digesters have popped up on farms across Ontario in recent years, but there are none quite like the digester Rob McKinlay has installed at Harcolm Farms at Beachville, Ontario. What makes it unique is its size – at 20 kilowatts, it’s 10- to 20-times smaller than the other 42 digesters currently operating on Ontario… Read more »

Mind Your Farm Business — Ep 34: The sweat equity trap

Capital assets don’t buy groceries. If this statement makes you scratch your head a little, you’re likely the older generation on the farm. If you read it and think, “Don’t I know it” you might be the in-coming generation, and very likely frustrated by the lack of clarity on how the farm’s equity and income… Read more »

Ag Ex Conference bridges the generational gap on farm transition

It’s rare that farmers get as excited about business management professional development opportunities as they do about the latest equipment reveal or new crop variety. But Farm Management Canada is working to change that with its fifth annual Agricultural Excellence Conference. Slated this year for November 26th to 28th, at Winnipeg, Man., executive director Heather Watson… Read more »

BMO launches young farmer loan program for the under 35 crowd

Citing a strong industry, but a shrinking demographic, BMO Bank of Montreal has introduced its new loan program for Canadian farmers 35 years or younger. The BMO Young Farmer program offers is aimed at helping both the person who’s already in the industry and for those who are choosing to get into agriculture, with loans of up… Read more »