Future Planning
In September, potato storage began in the Netherlands. Many crops, including potatoes, are harvested. These potatoes are then stored for several months.

A new atomiser, specifically for sprout inhibitors during this 'storage period', has been designed.

The atomiser, known as the Synofog, uses a new technique - electro-thermal atomisation. The advantage of this new piece of apparatus is that it does not have an open flame. This ensures its safe use with all kinds of sprout inhibitors. READ MORE
Published in Technology
A company started by six Mount Allison students sees a place for potato peels in furniture, flooring and ceiling tiles.

Enviroot's goal is to reduce waste by using food remains, especially potato peelings, to make a safe material for use in the home.

The company received a national business prize of $20,000 from Enactus Canada, a student-led entrepreneurial organization, and the McCain Social Enterprise Project Partnership to get the project going this summer.

"We use the potato peels that we get from McCain Foods here in New Brunswick in our particle board as a kind of filler," said Justin Trueman, Enviroot CEO and fourth-year biology student.

The potato peels are plasticized by melting them a little bit, and a bond between the potato peels' particles is created.

This allows them to bind products together without need of formaldehyde, which is the glues of some household furnishings, walls and stairs made from composite wood materials. READ MORE
Published in News
Chinese scientists will attempt to grow potatoes on the moon as part of a forthcoming lunar mission.
Published in Research
Last month Statistics Canada released the results of the 2016 Census of Agriculture. Like many of you, I was eager to read up on the results and discover how our industry has changed in the five years since the last survey was conducted. 
Published in News

July 28, 2015 - The Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC) is pleased to announce the formation of the Advisory Group for the Supporting the Advancement of Women in Agriculture project. This project will examine and address critical barriers to advancement facing women in the industry. Based on these results, there will be a strategic program developed and implemented to support improved access to leadership opportunities and strengthened business success for women working in agriculture.

As the project moves forward, the Advisory Group will provide feedback around key lines of enquiry to ensure meaningful outcomes for the agricultural community. This includes identifying subject matter experts to participate in the research, development and validation activities. Members will also assist in guiding the progress of the project for the next two years and as findings come in will provide feedback on proposed research instruments, tool drafts, report drafts, and other project elements.

The Advisory Group is comprised of professional and entrepreneurial women and men in the agriculture industry with an interest in advancing women in leadership roles. Members were drawn from senior management and executive positions in farm businesses, agricultural associations and agribusiness. They provide a balance of representation from across Canada as well as a cross-section of production areas, business focus and industry associations. The members include:

  • Heather Broughton, Agriculture and Food Council of Alberta, Agri-Food Management Excellence Inc.
  • Chantelle Donahue, Vice-President Corporate Affairs, Cargill Limited
  • Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst, NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences, University of Manitoba
  • Susan Fitzgerald, Fitzgerald & Co, Canadian AgriWomen Network
  • Rebecca Hannam, Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program, Rural Ontario Institute,
  • Dr. Laura Halfyard, Sunrise and Connaigre Mussel Farms, Canadian Aquaculture Industry Association
  • Brenda Lammens, Agri-Food Management Institute, Canadian AgriWomen Network
  • Geneviève Lemonde, AGRIcarrières
  • Iris Meck, Iris Meck Communications
  • Debra Pretty-Straathof, Ontario Federation of Agriculture, World Farmers Organization (WFO) Standing Committee on Women in Agriculture
  • Lis Robertson, Canadian Association of Farm Advisors
  • Kim Shukla, Canadian Hemp Trade Alliance

There will be ways for others to get involved in the project as well. In the near future CAHRC will be announcing sub-groups focused on specific areas. There will also be social media groups through Linked-In and Facebook formed to allow for greater connection and communication throughout the project.

For more information or to get involved with Supporting the Advancement of Women in Agriculture, please contact Jennifer Wright, HR Consultant at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or Debra Hauer, Project Manager at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit CAHRC at www.cahrc-ccrha.ca.  This project is funded by Status of Women Canada.

Published in Business Management

December 5, 2014 - In a news release issued in early December, the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC) says it is pleased to see that agriculture is included in the newly released Science and Technology Strategy for Canada. The future success of this large and impactful industry, says the release, is dependent upon a focus on science and innovation. New research is critical to ensuring productivity advances are possible and allows modern agriculture to continue to contribute to the growth of Canada’s economy.
 
“Agriculture is rooted in science,” says Mark Wales, Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council Chair.  Producers have achieved record productivity gains and modern agricultural efficiencies that help the environment due to research and innovation.  Now that agriculture is included within the Science and Technology Strategy, it is recognized as an Industry Canada priority.  This is important for the future of Canadian producers, our agriculture industry, and the future workers we will need for our operations.”  
 
“Agriculture and agri-food is an exciting career choice and innovation is an important part of the agriculture and agri-food industry,” says Portia Macdonald-Dewhirst, Executive Director of the Council.  “This recognition within the Science and Technology Strategy highlights the high level of skill required for agriculture and agri-food workers today.”
 
“To take advantage of the productivity gains through science and innovation, more highly skilled workers will be needed,” says Doug Chorney, Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council Vice-Chair.  “We have a lot of successes in agriculture and improvement in our modern agriculture production practices is directly connected to technology and research advancements. Access to agriculture labour, however, remains one of the biggest limiting factors to productivity gains for the industry.”
 
The Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council conducts labour market research and is responsible for the implementation of the Agriculture and Agri-Food Labour Action Plan, a road map for addressing critical labour shortages within the industry.  The report states labour shortages are pervasive across all agriculture and agri-food commodities, affecting current operational success and future growth potential.
 
“Producers and industry from all regions across the agriculture and agri-food value chain are coming together through the Agriculture and Agri-Food Labour Action Plan to collectively address worker shortages in the industry,” says MacDonald-Dewhirst. “We are working together as industry professionals to showcase that this is an exciting time to work within the agriculture and agri-food industry, a place where research and innovation connect to feed the world and build a better Canada.”

Published in News

December 4, 2014 - Canada shares the North American continent with the United States, so the climate and ecological effects there have the potential to be felt here at home. It's with this in mind that a new government forecast from the U.S. may be concerning for Canada's farmers.

According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), the long-term effects of climate change have the potential to substantially increase losses to crop insurance programs over the next several decades.

GAO revealed that losses for the programs tracing back to 2008 increased by 8 per cent due in part to population growth and appreciation in property prices for regions at risk of flooding. Furthermore, come 2040, climate change has the potential to increases losses even more, perhaps over 100 per cent by 2100.

Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, chairman of the U.S. Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Forestry and Natural Resources, requested the analysis to be done and remarked how the world can no longer tolerate dithering on climate change's devastating effects.

"It is yet another example of the expense that's caused by our failing to deal with climate change," said Bennett, according to USA Today.

Additionally, after analyzing 20 scientific studies on climate change, the report revealed there could be an uptick in hurricane losses of between 14 per cent and 47 per cent from 2000 to 2040. Losses could be even more significant further out, rising to as much as between 54 per cent and 110 per cent between 2040 and 2100.

Odds of Flooding May Rise
The GAO study also referenced how climate change could lead to an increased prevalence of flooding, which is the No. 1 natural disaster in the U.S.

Flooding has proven to be problematic over the last couple of years in Canada. Manitoba and Saskatchewan both saw severe flood damage this year. Many farmlands were destroyed and an estimated 100,000 people were displaced, according to provincial data records.

Crop insurance is an important protection farmers should have to provide financial cover for themselves when weather doesn't cooperate. With the appropriate documentation, farmers can make a claim if sales numbers are adversely affected by crop damage. Growers who receive insurance proceeds need to remember that this is considered earnings, so during tax season, it should be reported as farm income.

FBC is Canada’s Farm & Small Business Tax Specialist, providing tax accounting and bookkeeping services to over 20,000 farms and small businesses from Ontario to British Columbia. Our complete financial planning for farm and small business owners takes a long-term approach to address your specific needs at all stages of life and business, minimizing your taxes year after year. Year-round services include tax planning, tax optimization, business consulting and audit protection.

For more information, visit www.fbc.ca

Published in Business Management

December 4, 2014 - In Canada, all farmers must report their net income by year's end. When you report your farming income, you’ll have to track earnings for the entire fiscal period. While the exact timeline can vary - new or recently closed businesses will have slightly different fiscal periods - for the most part self-employed individuals' fiscal period ends on December 31.

For existing farm businesses, the term will typically span 12 months. This means that the months are winding down, and soon you’ll have to report your farming income.

Using the Form T2042
The Canada Revenue Agency designed a form to assist farmers with reporting their income. The Form T2042, or a Statement of Farming Activities, was put together in order to assist individuals with adding up their income and expenses for the year, to assist with income tax preparation. One of these forms, or another type of financial statement, will be required for each business that you run.

The identification section of the form is self-explanatory, though there are a few details you'll need to remember. You’ll need to include your program account number, assigned by the CRA, the fiscal period covered and your industry code. The CRA provides a list defining the codes for each farming sub-sector.

CRA states that if a single activity makes up 50 per cent of your farming business or more, then that should be the code you list on the Form T2042. For example, if 60 per cent of your business involves hog and pig farming, then you write '112210' in the industry code section. There are also combination industry codes, should no one activity make up more than 50 per cent of your business.

Following the identification section, the Form T2042 includes a box that allows you to track Internet-based earnings. This section simply requires you to state income from the Internet, and the websites on which transactions took place. You’ll also have to identify the percentage of your income derived from Internet activities.
The next section will require a statement of farming income. Every possible source of earnings from wheat sales to rebates is listed in this section of the Form T2042. When you have listed all revenue sources, you’ll have to add your gross income to the section - or how much money you made without taking into account expenses.

The expenses section of the form comes after the income box. Make sure that you separate your expense types into two categories - current and capital.

  • Capital expenses provide long lasting benefits and extend the life of your property.
  • Current expenses will bring property back to original condition, but won't actually improve it.

Finally there will be a section for net income or loss, a combination of income and expenses during the fiscal period.
Using the Form T2042 in order to break down income and expenses makes the process easier.

FBC is Canada’s Farm & Small Business Tax Specialist, providing tax accounting and bookkeeping services to over 20,000 farms and small businesses from Ontario to British Columbia. Our complete financial planning for farm and small business owners takes a long-term approach to address your specific needs at all stages of life and business, minimizing your taxes year after year. Year-round services include tax planning, tax optimization, business consulting and audit protection.

For more information, visit www.fbc.ca

Published in Business Management

Oct. 16, 2014, Guelph, ON – A new set of five Focus on Rural Ontario fact sheets examine the numbers of people moving in and out of each county and region by age, and some of the information may be surprising.

Published in Business Management

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