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A vision of what the beef industry needs: Part 2

Canadian beef industry needs to think big to optimize its potential

Editor’s Note: This is part two of a three-part series by Alberta rancher and consultant Sean McGrath with some thoughts on actions to improve the Canadian beef industry. In Part 1, McGrath outlined the value of developing a vision statement for his own farm. Here are more thoughts on what he might include in a […] Read more


New ideas for feeding and housing calves

Designs and technology showcased in Germany

Giving young calves the best start in life will reward farmers in the long run, as healthier animals thrive much better. With a growing consumer focus on animal welfare, farmers are being urged to ensure calves destined for both beef and dairy herds have the best comfort in life. This was a key message delivered […] Read more



Hoffman products tailored for horses

A family business grew out of a search for improved horse health and performance

A southern Alberta ranch family’s search more than 20 years ago for a better mineral mix for their own horses led to the development of Hoffman Horse Products, which are now known by horse owners across North America. Lorne and Marian Hoffman have had horses all their lives on their ranch near Stavely, about 90 […] Read more


Homemade safe creep idea protects piglets

A simple solution made with simple materials

As loose housing becomes standard practice across gestation facilities, it is only a matter of time until the market will demand loose-housed farrowing sows with litters. That’s the opinion of Brett, Jamie and Carl Israel of Carl Israel Farms Ltd. in Mapleton Township, Ont., one of two winners who shared the 2019 F.X. Aherne Prize […] Read more



Don’t get sentimental picking replacement cattle

Keep the best of your own, or look to buy quality heifers

Often in late fall and early winter, many producers face the task of adding replacement heifers to their cow herd, both from their own weaned heifer crop and potentially from other breeders. This routine process often yields mediocre and mixed results, so the question might be: “What can be done to take some of the […] Read more


Understanding feeder cattle price structure

Market Update with Jerry Klassen: Comparing prices for custom feeders and a finishing feedlot

The feeder cattle futures have traded in a narrow range since early November but we’ve seen severe swings in the western Canadian feeder cattle basis. This has made it difficult for the cow-calf operator and backgrounding operator to project a forward price for summer and fall. I’ve also received inquiries in regards to the price […] Read more



Tips for fencing on frozen ground

It may take a little longer, but at least the job gets done

With the 2018 harvest dragging out into late fall and a backlog of fall work to do, we weren’t too excited about trying our fencing project in the winter. We had over three miles of fence that needed to be built before spring. Our biggest concern was that the frost would be too deep and […] Read more


Select cows for udder conformation

Animal Health with Roy Lewis: Calves start at a disadvantage if they can't nurse properly

While there are many things to evaluate in cow selection, the importance of udder and teat conformation should not be underestimated. Many a cow is culled later in life because of bad teats. Her calves may have a hard time sucking and getting much-needed colostrum. Getting a calf sucking on big coke-bottle teats can take […] Read more



B.C. ranch caters to consumer segment

Customers looking for naturally raised and animal welfare certification

While his B.C. Cariboo Region ranch may between six to eight hours drive from major population markets, Rainer Krumsiek hasn’t let distance get in the way of developing a successful pasture-raised and finished meat business. Krumsiek, at Big Bear Ranch near Horsefly, (a small town in central B.C.) about 15 years ago started using Galloway […] Read more


A vision of what the beef industry needs: Part 3

It’s a big economic driver that needs smart, progressive leadership

Editor’s Note: This is Part 3 of a three-part series by Alberta rancher and consultant Sean McGrath with some thoughts on actions to benefit the Canadian beef industry. After a few more thoughts on where the industry is at today, McGrath takes a stab at what he thinks a vision statement might contain and welcomes […] Read more