News & Events
Commodity Groups Release Amalgamation Report
Posted: December 15, 2017
Carman, MB – December 14 – In a watershed moment for agriculture in Manitoba, the five commodity groups that in May of this year began exploring an amalgamation are pleased to release a summary report highlighting the potential path towards a new, grassroots and farmer-driven organization.
The release of this report launches a consultation period for farmer members of the organizations to become involved in the process.
“Commodity groups need to be farmer-driven. They need to be run by their grassroots,” says Myron Krahn, President of Manitoba Corn Growers Association. “This report shows how amalgamating would not only maintain our connection to farmers from across Manitoba, but also how it would improve it. From better research capability to a greater potential to leverage research investments, we’ll have more impact as an amalgamated group. Together we can be better.”
The potential board structure, governance structure, core functions, legal process and timeline of this potential amalgamation are all laid out in this summary report, which changed and adapted as the steering committee received feedback from their farmer members over the past few months.
The report is the result of nine months of meetings between board and staff representatives from Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers, Manitoba Flax Growers, the National Sunflower Association of Canada, Manitoba Corn Growers and Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers and Rob Hannam of the consulting firm Synthesis Agri-Food Network. It serves as a roadmap, the destination of which is a farmer-driven, grassroots organization that will reduce overlap, increase impact and deliver more value to Manitoba farmers.
Regional meetings and presentations are planned for January 2018 so that farmers across the province have an opportunity to hear the proposed plan and ask questions, in-person.
Dates and Locations for meetings and presentations are as follows:
- St. Jean Farm Days presentation Jan. 10 at 1 p.m.
- Dauphin, MB meeting Jan. 11 at 1 p.m.
- Stonewall, MB meeting Jan. 12 at 10 a.m.
- Brandon Ag Days presentation Jan. 16 at 3 p.m.
In addition, this report will be discussed at each involved commodity group’s Annual General Meeting, which will be held during the CropConnect conference on February 14 and 15, 2018.
Manitoba farmers who grow the crops represented in this amalgamation process are encouraged to get involved and “have your say.” The report will be available at the following temporary website set up for this consultation period: www.mbcrops.ca. Feedback from farmer members is welcome and encouraged through email directly to Rob Hannam at email@example.com.
Full News Release
MB Commodity Organization Amalgamation Summary Report
Shifting Demographics, Mindset and Assets
Posted: December 11, 2017
NSAC is excited to co-host this great half day session “Your Farm Business in 2025: Shifting Demographics, Mindsets and Assets” featuring Jolene Brown, Kristjan Hebert, and Heather Watson.
Join us Feb 13 1:00-4:30 pm at the Victoria Inn Hotel and Convention Centre
AGENDA: Welcome to Your Farm Business in 2025
NOTICE: NSAC Annual General Meeting
Posted: November 28, 2017
2018 Annual General Meeting
Victoria Inn Hotel & Convention Centre, Winnipeg, MB
Wednesday, February 14th, 2018
10:50 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
10:50 a.m. – Call to Order
10:55 a.m. – Minutes of the 2017 Annual General Meeting
11:00 a.m. – 2017 Financial Report
Appointment of Auditors
11:10 a.m. – Board and Executive Director Report
11:15 a.m. – Other Business
Manitoba Commodity Organization Amalgamation Proposal
11:30 a.m. – Adjourn
News Release: M&C Commodities brings back Sunflower Crush to Manitoba
Posted: November 23, 2017
M&C Commodities brings back Sunflower Crush to Manitoba
Beausejour, MB – November 23 – M&C Commodities launches its brand new line of cold press sunflower oil to consumers this week with a featured kiosk at Outlet Collection Winnipeg from today through till Christmas.
“After a soft launch of our cold press sunflower oil at farmer’s markets this summer, M&C Commodities is excited to offer Manitoba cold press sunflower oil for sale” says Carlos Melo, President & CEO of M&C Commodities. “The versatility of this healthy oil is recognized by chefs and consumers. Sunflower oil is preferred for its nutty taste, frying performance and health benefits.” Sunflower oil is light in taste and appearance and supplies more Vitamin E than any other vegetable oil. It is a combination of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats with low saturated fat levels.
Click here to read the full release.
2017 Sunflower Variety Performance Trial Data RESULTS
Posted: November 15, 2017
The 2017 Sunflower Variety Performance Trial data results are now available!
The varieties that appear in these trials are hybrids sunflower breeding companies are actively pursuing or marketing in Manitoba. These varieties may be in the experimental stage or registered with the CFIA.
2017 VPT Data Presentation FINAL
Commodity Groups Develop Amalgamation Roadmap
Posted: November 2, 2017
Carman, MB – November 2 – The five commodity groups that signed an MOU in May to explore an amalgamation have met with Manitoba Agriculture, developed a comprehensive member consultation plan and are excited to announce the release of a summary report that will be made available to farmers in December.
“The silos of agriculture are crumbling, like it or not. It’s a change we’ve all observed over the years,” says Eric Fridfinnson, Chair of the Manitoba Flax Growers Association. “This approach – the approach we’ve been working on – has the whole farm in view. We want farmers to have access to commodity-specific information as well as resources that deal with the health and sustainability of their entire farm operations, from rotation BMPs to soil health to multiple-crop growing tips.”
Representatives from Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers, Manitoba Flax Growers, the National Sunflower Association of Canada, Manitoba Corn Growers and Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers have been working with Synthesis Agri-Food Network consultant Rob Hannam on developing a commodity group amalgamation report to present to the province’s farmers.
The report will include information on board/governance structure of the new, combined organization, a potential operations structure as well as a list of farmer benefits, which includes improved agricultural research, improved innovation and increased member value for Manitoba growers producing the represented crops.
Since the MOU was signed in the spring, the working group, consisting of staff representatives from each of the five groups involved, has met on a regular basis to develop questions for the steering committee (made up of board and staff representatives), as well as develop a consultation plan that ensures this process remains driven by Manitoba’s farmers.
In September, the steering committee met with the Minister of Agriculture Ralph Eichler and members of his office to bring the province up to speed on the MOU and the nature of the upcoming report. The committee was met with optimism and enthusiasm over the project.
Working together to reduce overlap, increase efficiencies and increase research and agronomy capacity is consistent with the province’s commitment to reducing red tape and improving agricultural research and innovation.
The committee met again in October to discuss the legal pathways involved in amalgamating organizations. These talks have helped anticipate and answer questions that the group and/or committee is likely to receive. And each of these talks/meetings will be represented in the soon-to-be-released report.
On January 10, Mr. Hannam and a working group delegation will host a meeting for interested farmers at St. Jean Farm Days. And on January 16, the amalgamation report will be presented at Ag Days in Brandon. Check the website of the event that’s closest to you for presentation details.
Regional consultation meetings are also being planned for Stonewall and Dauphin. The working group will send out details related to those dates before the end of the year.
We strongly encourage farmers to attend the regional consultation meeting or presentation scheduled for their area. We also encourage farmers to attend their organization’s Annual General Meetings (AGM) at CropConnect Conference this winter to discuss the report.
We want to hear your thoughts, take your questions and chat face-to-face.
Feedback from members on this process is always welcome. Please email your questions or comments or thoughts directly to Rob Hannam at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, please contact:
Director of Communications
Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers
Click here to read the full news release.
Harvest Prep – Tips and Tricks
Posted: September 21, 2017
As desiccation is starting to take place in sunflower fields around the province, its time to prepare for harvest. Sunflowers can be harvested when the seed moisture is below 20%. Harvesting when seed moisture is >20% can result is scuffing which reduces the marketability of the seeds.
Tips and tricks from the experts:
- Reduce combine speed as sunflower can easily shatter if heads are dry;
- Cylinder speeds range from 300-500 RPM with concave settings quite open (1″ in front, 3/4″ in rear) to minimize seed breakage and dehulling;
- Acceptable harvest loss: 10 seeds/sq. ft (don’t forget heads that have seed left in them) represents a loss of 100 lbs/acre.
- Fire Hazards: Keep combine and grain dryer free of chaff and dust (consider having a portable leaf blower on hand for this).
- Are your bins ready? Sunflower seed is safe to store at a moisture content of 9.5 percent or less. At 10 to 12 percent moisture content, seed can be stored in bins with aeration.
Desiccation: How, When and Why?
Posted: September 7, 2017
Why should I consider desiccating my sunflowers?
Natural desiccation can be slow and uneven. Poor weather can cause reduced quality and yield through stem breakage, shattering and predation by blackbirds. To speed up the natural desiccation process, it may be worthwhile to consider the use of a chemical desiccation. Chemical desiccants are generally typical herbicides that have achieved special registration to be used as a harvest aid.
What is the right STAGE to desiccate at?
Timing of desiccation is critical as application prior to physiological maturity can result in decreased quality, seed size and test weight. Sunflowers are physiologically mature at the stage R-9. At this stage, the seeds have reached maximum size and bushel weight. Visually, this is when the back of the head is yellow and the bracts are brown and seed moisture is between 30- 35%.
What PRODUCTS are registered as a Harvest Aid?
There are currently three products, Reglone (Syngenta), Desica (Syngenta), and Heat (BASF), registered as a Harvest Aid for sunflowers. Both of these products can be applied by air. The application rates for the products is as follows;
- Preharvest Interval for Reglones and Desica is 15-20 days.
- For best results with Reglones and Desica apply in the evenings or on a cloudy day for best results.
- Preharvest Interval for Heat is 7 days
- For all products high water volumes are needed for proper efficacy.
- The above products may have slightly different timing ranges. Consult the label or chemical representative for more details.
How to increase efficacy?
Coverage is critical when desiccating sunflower. This is because the back of the head of sunflower is so pulpy that improved coverage will increase rate of dry-down. Applying at the water volumes as suggested by the chemical companies will achieve the required coverage for desiccation. However, water volumes may be lower than desirable during application. If the application is timed when there is free water or dew on the plants, the products will spread‘ on the dew, resulting in a better desiccation. If activity in the plant (so after application) occurs when temperatures are above 20-25C, this will also aid in faster and more efficient desiccation and dry-down.Click here for the full bulletin.
Exploration of potential commodity group merger taking shape
Posted: August 31, 2017
Exploration of potential commodity group merger taking shape
Winnipeg, MB – August 31 – The roadmap exploring the potential merger of five provincial commodity organizations is starting to take shape following a series of productive meetings and a unanimous commitment to ensuring the process remains farmer-driven.
“This is a watershed moment for agriculture in Manitoba,” says Myron Krahn, president of Manitoba Corn Growers Association. “The directors involved in this process still have a lot of questions and there is still a lot of work to do, but progress on developing a comprehensive member-consultation plan has been made. As farmers, we need to make sure we look at the health and sustainability of the whole farm and not just one commodity over another.”
On August 1 of this year, the merger steering committee comprised of the staff leads from each involved commodity group and directors from each of the represented boards (Manitoba Corn Growers Association, Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers, Manitoba Flax Growers Association, National Sunflower Association of Canada and the Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers Association) met with advisor Rob Hannam of Synthesis Agri-Food Network in Carman, Man. The day-long meeting led by Hannam tackled topics related to direction, identified how a combined organization can be more effective, answered questions and concerns and established timelines for farmer member consultations.
With the intention of creating a proposal highlighting a path forward, the steering committee has begun talks surrounding the guiding principles of a merged organization; the purpose and benefits of such a group; the board and governance structure; maintaining relationships with partner and sister organizations and the decision-making process for members. Crop research and agronomy along with market development activities will continue to be the main focus and mandate of a merged organization, as it is today for each of the five groups.
“I think we all left the meeting with an appreciation for the sensitivity and attention to detail this process requires,” adds Krahn. “I will say this: farmer members need to drive this and we as directors need to make sure that happens.”
On August 22, another meeting between the commodity group heads (working group) took place to add the next layer of details to the plan and to establish timelines for communications, including engagement with all board members, the farmers who grow the represented crops and government.
“It is quite important that we hear from as many farmers as possible.” says Hannam. “So we have set up a special email address as a way to gather feedback. You can email your comments, ideas, as well as any concerns to me at email@example.com.“
Farmers who grow barley, corn, edible beans, flax, pulses, soybeans, sunflower or spring wheat are encouraged to send their feedback and/or questions to the email address listed above.
Synthesis Agri-Food Network
|Pam de Rocquigny
Manitoba Corn Growers and Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers
For more information, please contact
Director of Communications
Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers
Click here to see the pdf format.
Working Group Hires Advisor to Explore Merger, Get Farmer Feedback
Posted: June 22, 2017
Carman, MB – June 22 – The working group comprised of the executive directors and general managers of the five commodity groups that earlier this year committed to exploring a merger are excited to announce the hiring of advisory firm Synthesis Agri-Food Network to begin the precursory process.
“We received many good proposals from qualified firms, but we are confident Synthesis will be able to hit the ground running, building on the progress we have already made with respect to working together,” says Monika Haley, administrator at Manitoba Flax Growers Association. “Synthesis’s outcomes were very clear and its timelines were in keeping with our commitment to progress and member feedback. Rob Hannam and his team further strengthen our ability to continue working through the process of a potential merger of commodity groups.
In May of this year, the Manitoba Corn Growers Association, Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers, Manitoba Flax Growers Association, National Sunflower Association of Canada and the Manitoba Wheat and Barley Association signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to begin exploring a merger. The MOU itself is a watershed moment for the agriculture industry in Manitoba, conceived out of a desire to increase administrative and research efficiencies and deliver more value back to farmers.
Click here to read the full news release.