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Ontario Grain Farmer Magazine is the flagship publication of Grain Farmers of Ontario and a source of information for our province’s grain farmers. 

GFO Newsletter for December 2016


All Grain Farmers of Ontario farmer-members are being asked to participate in a three-year study being conducted by BDO on the impact of the new neonicotinoid seed treatment regulations. Grain Farmers of Ontario wants to determine how these regulations have affected your ability to purchase seed, create a record of crop damage incurred from adhering to the regulations, and measure the increased expenses to farm operations from adhering to the regulations or using alternative products.
The survey was mailed to you with this issue of the Ontario Grain Farmer magazine. Please complete the survey and return it via the business reply envelope provided. You can also fill out the survey online at   •

The Canadian Field Crop Research Alliance (CFCRA) held a 1.5 day Research Summit at the beginning of November in Gatineau, Quebec.

The CFCRA Research Summit provided an opportunity for researchers and industry leaders from several Canadian commodity groups to come together to identify priorities and approaches for field crop research in Canada for the next five to seven years. The meeting focused on eastern Canadian barley, and Canada-wide corn, oats, and soybeans, and included an industry end-user panel session outlining market challenges and providing perspective on where the markets appear to be heading in the next five to 10 years.

While the CFCRA currently supports field crop research predominantly centred on genetic improvement, the meeting presented CFCRA’s plans for an expanded research scope, including support for some research beyond genetic improvement to address sector goals, including plant pathology, entomology, weed management, nutrient management, and soil health. The discussions at the CFCRA Research Summit were largely focused on identifying targets and complementary capacity and approaches needed to achieve research outcomes that will provide high value returns to Canadian farmers, grain value chains, and taxpayers providing funding.

The CFCRA is comprised of provincial farm organizations and industry partners, including: Grain Farmers of Ontario, Atlantic Grains Council, Producteurs de grains du Québec, Manitoba Corn Growers Association, Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers, Saskatchewan Pulse Growers, SeCan Association, and Pepsico Global R&D.

To learn more about the CFCRA, please visit  •

Grain Farmers of Ontario was honoured to be recognized by the Canadian Agri-Marketing Association (CAMA) at the Best of CAMA 2016 awards on November 4 in Calgary. This is the third year in a row that Grain Farmers of Ontario’s consumer and internal marketing efforts have been acknowledged by industry peers.

Grain Farmers of Ontario’s consumer outreach and media tour initiative ‘Chris Soules promotes the Good in Every Grain’ won the media relations category and received a certificate of merit (2nd place) for the total campaign within its budget category. The Ontario Grain Farmer magazine won its category for magazines and newspapers.

Grain Farmers of Ontario was recognized as a finalist in three other categories:  mobile apps category for SellSmart, Grain Farmers of Ontario’s newly redesigned and updated pricing tool; ‘other outdoor’, for the rebrand of our truck and trailer displays to include barley and oats; and video targeted to external audiences, for the video produced as part of the ‘Chris Soules promotes the Good in Every Grain’ initiative.

Congratulations to all of the 2016 Best of CAMA winners! •

Grain Farmers of Ontario’s What’s Growing ON? resource kit includes all of the materials necessary to complete lessons and activities designed to help Ontario school children and their families understand the role grains play in the lives of Ontarians. The resource kit, designed for grade 3 students, includes a teacher curriculum project and guide and parent at-home activity guides, along with enough planting cups, soil wafers, and seeds for the whole class. Every year, Grain Farmers of Ontario supplies 10,000 of these kits to teachers across the province, free of charge.

What’s Growing ON? kits have been a popular item for the 2016-2017 school year; by the end of October, Grain Farmers of Ontario had already fulfilled more than 300 kit orders, including nearly 8,500 seed cups to schools from Kenora and Pikangikum to Windsor, the Greater Toronto Area, St. Catharines, and Ottawa. Farmer-members are encouraged to have their childrens’ teachers order this fun resource. Kits are available at www.goodinevery, while supplies last. •

Grain Farmers of Ontario was at the 2016 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair at Exhibition Place in Toronto from November 4 – 13. The Growing Connections trailer exhibit includes videos, crop displays, and end-use products of barley, corn, oats, soybeans, and wheat. The Royal is a great opportunity to teach urban consumers about the many uses of grains and connect them with the farmers who grow grains across the province. •

Grain Farmers of Ontario farmer-members are invited to attend a full-day marketing seminar during the months of January and February. There will be two seminars offered: one will be a combined introductory futures and options seminar and the second one will focus on technical analysis.

Seminars will be led by Marty Hibbs, grain merchandiser with Grain Farmers of Ontario. Hibbs is a 25 year veteran futures trader, analyst, and portfolio manager. He was a regular guest analyst on BNN for four years and is currently authoring the Market Side education series on futures trading basics in the Ontario Grain Farmer magazine.

Futures & Options: learn to incorporate options into your marketing strategies
January 4:    Guelph
January 24:    Barrie

Technical Analysis: learn to trade the markets using charts and historical data
January 18:    New Liskeard
January 31:    Chatham
February 1:    Stratford
February 2:    London
    February 7:    Brantford
ebruary 15:    Cornwall
February 16:    Belleville

Pre-registration is required. No walk-ins will be permitted. To reserve a seat call Marty Hibbs 1-800-265-0550; email:; or go online at marketing.

Please note that the dates and locations are tentative and could change. Venue and start time details will be provided through an email with your registration confirmation. •

Grain Farmers of Ontario’s SellSmart app has been relaunched to better help you sell your barley, corn, oats, soybeans, and wheat in the commodity markets. This specialized app provides CBOT futures pricing data and adjusted cash prices for local grain elevators across the province. You are invited to download the latest update and enjoy new features, improved functionality, and a refined interface. SellSmart is free to use.

Like the original, you can select the regions and elevators that you are interested in. The app also supports currency conversion and barley and oat pricing. You can define low or high prices for commodities and receive price alerts as a notification message on your device. This price alert feature, combined with local cash price data, is what really sets SellSmart apart from other mobile commodity pricing tools — you won’t find these features anywhere else. •

by Philip Shaw
Harvest continues across the United States with record harvests destined for the bin. In the October United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report, USDA raised U.S. soybean production to 4.269 billion bushels and increased U.S. national yield of 51.4 bushels/acre. The harvested acreage of soybeans was increased two per cent to 83 million acres. In the same report, USDA reduced corn production to 15.057 billion bushels with the estimated U.S. national yield of 173.4 bushels per acre. It’s been a banner year in U.S. fields.

In Ontario, basis levels have actually softened despite a lower Canadian dollar from last month (.7460 November 6). This in part reflects Ontario yields which maybe better than expected in some areas. However, in other areas, yields were down depending on where rain fell.  •



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