Well seven months into this pandemic thing and if you were expecting that life would be getting back to normal by now, well it isn’t — not completely anyway.
I think the world and certainly Canadians are getting a bit more comfortable with COVID-19 protocols and social distancing requirements, which is a good thing because I also believe they are going to be with us for quite some time, like well into 2021 and maybe even longer.
And on that note, many of your favourite fall and winter farm shows and conferences for 2020 and early 2021 have announced they will either be virtual events or have just been outright cancelled.
Let’s face it, doing these virtual, on-line conferences certainly isn’t the same as attending a live meeting and being able to shake hands and talk to people in person, but at the same time it is a very handy way to get a great deal of information streaming right into your home office, living room, or even the tractor cab.
So here is my late September summary of what events are happening, have gone virtual or have been completely cancelled.
Editor’s Note: October Deadline — Just a heads up that if you are a pork producer or consultant and have a great innovation or invention, saving time, money or both, enter the F X Aherne Innovation award contest that’s part of the Banff Pork Seminar. Deadline for entries is Oct. 31, 2020. You’ll find lots more about the Banff Seminar towards the end of this column.
CROP PRODUCTION SHOW – The only major show that still appears to be planning a live event in early 2021 is the Western Canadian Crop Production Show, in Saskatoon – Jan. 11 to 14. Along with their website and a few others I couldn’t find any reference to it being cancelled or going virtual. So as of this moment it appears planning is full steam ahead for a live, real and in person 38th annual show in January 2021. Their website shows they will be open for business Jan. 11 to 14, 2021 at WTC PrairieLand Park in Saskatoon. You can find all the details at: cropproductiononline.com
AGRITRADE SHOW – Red Deer AB.– this successful central Alberta farm and ranch show featuring equipment as well as all kinds of agriculture suppliers and services is cancelled for 2020. It is usually held around Remembrance day in November.
FARM FAIR INTERNATIONAL- Edmonton, AB — this fall livestock show that has been running for about 45 years, slated for Nov. 11 to 15, 2020 has been cancelled.
CANADIAN WESTERN AGRIBITION, Regina, SK — Ranchers and farmers will have to wait until November 2021 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Canadian Western Agribition. Although organizers were hopeful in April they would still be able to go ahead, a painful decision was made later to cancel the show for 2020. Again in 400 and some sleeps they hope to open the doors to the event Nov. 22 to 27, 2021.
CANADA’S OUTSTANDING YOUNG FARMERS – Saskatoon, SK — The 40th annual national awards program of Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers, slated for November in Saskatoon has been cancelled.
MANITOBA AG DAYS – Brandon, MB —this popular agriculture show usually held in mid-January has been cancelled for this coming January. The show website is showing there are only about 400 and some sleeps before the next Manitoba Ag Days will be staged, running from Jan. 18 to 20, 2022 at the Keystone Centre.
FARMTECH CONFERENCE – Edmonton, AB — one of the most popular conferences of the year, which drew about 1,500 farmers from across Western Canada, FarmTech, scheduled for Jan. 26 to 28, 2021 in Edmonton has been cancelled.
FARM FORUM EVENT — The Farm Forum Event, which this November was going to be held in Saskatoon, will be going on-line with a virtual conference Nov. 9 and 10, 2020. There are dozens of speakers lined – researchers and agricultural specialists — on a wide range of topics from marketing, to the environment, to crop fertility, to farm succession, and the topics just keeps going.
Among the producers who will speaking on a range of topics are: Andy Kirschenman, of Harvest Moon Farm Ltd. at Hilda, AB (soil health); Tim Nerbas, NGR Farms Ltd., Waseca, SK (soil health/conservation); Colin Rosengren, Rosengren Farms, Midale, SK (intercropping); E. Blake Vince, Merlin, ON (cover cropping); Ryan Boyd, South Glanton Farms, Forrest, MB (Beef and grass and the agroecosystem); and Barb Stefanyshyn-Cote, Black Fox Farm and Distillery, Saskatoon, SK (value added farming). For more information and to register visit their website: farmforumevent.com
BANFF PORK SEMINAR — The Banff Pork Seminar (BPS) will be an online virtual event running Jan. 5 to 7, 2021. Free conference registration opens in October, however if you are a pork producer, veterinarian, or connected to the hog industry and have a great idea, or innovation the industry should know about, please submit your entry for the F X Aherne Prize for Innovative Pork Production before November 1.
Contest entry deadline for the 2021 Seminar is Oct. 31, 2020, says researcher Ben Willing of the University of Alberta, who chairs the BPS awards selection committee. The contest is open to owners, production managers, herds people, consultants, or anyone who has developed an innovation relevant to the North American pork industry.
“Innovations can be big or small, simple or complex and the creativity and innovation of entries always amazes us,” says Willing. “They can apply to any segment of the industry including feeding, breeding, ventilation, disease control and prevention, transportation, manure management, animal handling, facility and enterprise management and pork quality and food safety.”
The prize is significant. Since the 2021 Seminar is a virtual event the 2021 winner will receive complimentary registration to the 2022 Seminar Jan. 11 to 13, 2022, accommodation at the world-renowned Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel and travel assistance. That’s a value of approximately $2,000.
Best place to find all contest details is on the Seminar website www.banffpork.ca.
Follow Banff Pork Seminar on Twitter @banffpork. Connect on Facebook /BanffPork. Get complete coverage in a Special Meeting Report of the 2021 Banff Pork Seminar, presented by communications partner Meristem. Find the special report link on the Seminar site home page www.banffpork.ca.
Lee Hart is a field editor with Grainews based in Calgary. Contact him at 403-592-1964 or by email at [email protected]