Tag: OMAFRA

Wheat School: Action item prioritizing in a difficult spring

Wet soil, cold nights, weeds, disease, and nitrogen needs are all converging at once – what’s a wheat grower to do? As Ontario’s cold, soggy spring continues, deciding what to do next with the winter wheat crop can be a challenge, especially as the need to plant corn and soybeans becomes more pressing. In this… Read more »

Government Wipes Out Ontario Processing Vegetable Grower Board; Appoints Trustee

In a rare, but completely legal move, Ontario’s provincial government has removed an elected board of directors and named a trustee to oversee the organization. Late last week, Jeff Leal, minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) fired the entire Ontario Processing Vegetable Growers (OPVG) board, and appointed Elmer Buchanan, a farmer and former OMAFRA minister… Read more »

How Many Tonnes of Protein Can You Raise Per Acre?

If you’ve got cows, you likely do something like this: number of cows x days on feed = tonnes of hay/forage needed. But what if you’ve got land, but no livestock, and want to include perennial forage in rotation? Have you ever sat down and done this: number of acres x tonnes of feed produced… Read more »

Chocolate Bars and Bran Cereal for Your Soil Bugs

There’s a concerning trend in Ontario’s soils: organic matter is being depleted. The decrease may seem small — about 0.8% over 12 years — but organic matter is vital to soil’s water holding capacity, nutrient-cycling ability, and compaction resiliency, to name just a few roles. What’s more, replacing lost soil organic matter is a slow,… Read more »

Ontario Ag Minister Says It’s Back to Basics in 2017: Soil, Water, & Air

Don’t be surprised to see more hydro bill relief in sight in 2017 for rural Ontarians, says the province’s minister of agriculture, food and rural affairs. In a year-end interview, Minister Jeff Leal said that although the province has started finding ways to reduce energy bills, “there’s more to do.” He said he “wouldn’t be… Read more »

Ontario Announces Details of Pollinator Health Plan

Ontario has released its Pollinator Health Action Plan which includes focusing on four key stressors to honeybee and pollinator health and financial support and increased education for beekeepers. A re-iterated aspirational goal to “restore, enhance and protect” 1 million acres of pollinator habitat is also included in the plan. Found here, the plan is a mix of… Read more »

Greg Meredith Appointed Deputy Minister of OMAFRA

One of the highest-ranking public servants in the federal agriculture department is leaving Ottawa to become Ontario’s Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Greg Meredith has worked for the federal government for more than 30 years, serving as Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM), Strategic Policy with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada since 2010. He was… Read more »

Wheat School – Making The Right Choice for Fall Weed Control

In a perfect world, winter wheat growers would apply a pre-plant weed control application to tackle winter annual and perennial weeds. But it doesn’t always work out that way. In this episode of Real Agriculture’s Wheat School, OMAFRA weed management specialist Mike Cowbrough takes a look at weed control options for producers who didn’t have… Read more »

Talking Dirt: New Soil Health Centre Backs Intuition With Science

Soil preservation is gaining seatbelt and sugarless gum status in our society. It’s simply no longer optional. Some soil advocates are now calling for every agricultural grant application to have a tick box explaining how the proposed project exercises best soil management practices. No doubt, pressure is mounting to acknowledge the unparalleled role those first… Read more »

When Virus News Goes Viral: Ontario Deals with Rabies Outbreak

Producers can take heart in the approaches underway by provincial authorities to get a handle on two rabies outbreaks in southern Ontario. The outbreaks, involving terrestrial rabies (not bat rabies) have officials turning to proven control methods — and social media, through the Ontario Animal Health Network (OAHN) — to keep the disease in check. They… Read more »

Goat Sector Growing, Herds Need to be in Top Shape

What did you do on your most recent vacation? Ski? Go south? Binge-watch Netflix? Not Dr. Paula Menzies. She spent her vacation writing the final chapters of a book…on udder health for dairy goats. It wasn’t especially relaxing. And it won’t end up being a best seller on Amazon or Chapters. But the book, released… Read more »

Ontario Budget 2016 — Can Agriculture Do More With Less?

Ontario’s 2016 budget made many headlines last week – from free university tuition for low income families to a 4.3 cent climate-change-fighting gas tax, and even a lower-than-expected deficit. But what does it all mean for agriculture, farmers and rural Ontario? With some help from our RealAgriculture twitter followers, we peppered Ontario Agriculture, Food and… Read more »

Soybean School: A Simple Fix For Heavy Corn Residue

What impact do bigger corn plants that stay greener longer have on soybean yield? That’s a question OMAFRA soybean specialist Horst Bohner hears a lot these days. The answer depends on a number of factors explains Bohner in this episode of Real Agriculture Soybean School. He notes that corn is indeed producing a larger amount… Read more »

Cold Weather Needed to Manage Pest Pressure, says OMAFRA Entomologist

A recent spurt of colder weather in Ontario is bad news for pests and good news for farmers, says OMAFRA Field Entomologist Tracey Baute. “It makes entomologists a little nervous, especially when we don’t see winter arriving until mid January,” says Baute who’s concerned that the warm fall and late-arriving winter of 2016 will mean… Read more »

Soybean School: The Return of Wide Rows

Wide row soybeans are poised to make a comeback in Ontario, says OMAFRA soybean specialist Horst Bohner. Whether it happens will likely depend on how farmers evaluate the importance of four key factors. Speaking at the recent SouthWest Agricultural Conference at Ridgetown College, Bohner explained that equipment is the first thing to consider. “We have… Read more »