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Serving the producers of the Northwest



North Battleford, Saskatchewan

Thursday, February 20, 2020

KICK’IN IT UP AT THE EVENING OUT March 21st, 2020 • Agrivilla Building, Exhibition Grounds

35th Annual Agri-Mex 2020 Farm, Trade and Home Show April 3rd, & 4th, 2020

Evening Out tickets are available on line at www.agsociety.com Featuring:


Country recording artist & Canadian Idol runner - up!

Wonderful door prizes, a fully catered meal by SHIRL'S CATERING and great entertainment with JAYDEE BIXBY


Hwy 40 East - Exhibition Park, North Battleford, SK Show Times Friday, April 3rd • 11:00 am - 8:00 pm Saturday, April 4th • 9:00 am - 4:00 pm


Available in the office for $30.00 each or $200.00 for a table of 8 Please stop by for your ticket, Call over the phone with visa or mastercard 306-445-2024

Don’t miss out book your booth today!

Book your booth at www.agsociety.com For More Information Call: 306-445-2024

New support expanded to small businesses in rural western Canada

Rural Opportunities Fund to help create jobs in smaller communities Staff Recently, Terry Duguid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (Western Economic Diversification Canada) announced the Government of Canada will help Community Futures Pan West Network Inc. establish a Rural Opportunities Fund, supported by $4.8 million in federal funding. Community Futures organizations play an instrumental role creating jobs in many small towns, taking a grassroots approach to economic development. Community Futures Pan West Network Inc., a joint initiative of the four west-

ern provincial Community Futures associations, supports 90 local organizations in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba to help bolster business development services in rural areas. The newly announced Rural Opportunities Fund will further support community economic development projects and business retention initiatives, including those for Indigenous Peoples, women, and youth in rural and remote communities. Through the Rural Opportunities Fund, Community Futures Pan West Network Inc. will support community resiliency projects and business retention initiatives, such as encouraging pop-

ulation growth or helping succession planning for small business owners. The Rural Opportunities Fund will be available to Community Futures organizations across Western Canada. Over three years, it is expected that the Rural Opportunities Fund will assist 90 entrepreneurs, support 75 western Canadian small- and medium-sized businesses transition ownership, and engage 25 partners in 20 community-based projects. “When it comes to creating jobs outside of major centres, Community Futures organizations are simply indispensable. This investment in Community

Futures Pan West Network Inc. will open up new opportunities, keep communities strong, and ensure all Canadians can benefit from our growing economy,” said The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada. “The Government of Canada is pleased to support the Community Futures Pan West Network Inc. and the Rural Opportunities Fund. This Fund will drive community-based innovation and economic development in rural communities across Western Canada that will

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create quality jobs for Canadians,” said Terry Duguid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (Western Economic Diversification Canada). “Rural communities are a vital part of this country and crucial to the prosperity of Canada as a whole. I am pleased that the Government of Canada is supporting the work of Community Futures Pan West Network Inc. in developing this new fund, which will have a big impact on the lives of residents of Western Canada’s rural communities. By working together, supporting local initiatives and investing in commu-

nity development programs like these, we will help rural communities unlock opportunities and thrive over the long term,” said The Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development. “We’re thrilled that Western Economic Diversification Canada has recognized the need for a continued focus on building community resiliency through community economic development projects. The funding will allow us to continue strengthening rural communities across the West,” said Jim MacMillan, Chair, Community Futures Pan West Network Inc.

Page 2 - The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020

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Consumer trust in agriculture is waning Organized, well-funded groups condemning farming practices on social media are winning the consumer trust battle By Sylvain Charlebois

Professor in Food Distribution and Policy Dalhousie University

The public uses social media every day to express concerns about farming practices. And it’s getting worse. Farmers are criticized for a variety of reasons – for example their environmental stewardship and their ethical behaviour in how they treat livestock. In survey after survey, Canadians generally say they trust farmers, regardless of headlines, social media attacks or passing consumer trends. But trustworthiness may no longer be enough for farmers. The public expects more. Farmers are arguably the best environmental stewards in our economy and they know it. With livestock, it makes little sense to accuse farmers for not treating animals appropriately when their livelihood relies on the health of their animals. Accusations are often senseless and completely uninformed. Still, assaults on farmers continue. It’s not like farmers have taken consumer trust for granted. For years, farmers have been self-advocating, as well as educating the public at markets, trade shows and in the media. Many pro-farming groups have been amazingly active. But evidence suggesting these groups are listened to by the broader public is scarce. Organized, well-funded groups condemning farming practices on social media are winning the consumer trust battle. While Canadians overwhelmingly trust farmers, they remain split on whether practices on farms are ethical or environmentally sound. Environmentalists and animal activists are taking advantage of this uncertainty on the part of many Canadians. Some groups are even trespassing, visiting farms to claim justice for animals. Some groups that believe producing meat requires murder are ready to do anything to influence public opinion.

Over 20 incidents across the country have been reported in the last 12 months, including in British Columbia, Quebec, Ontario, Alberta and New Brunswick. These impromptu visits pose a risk to the animals, which is why some provinces are adopting stricter rules and harsher penalties for trespassers. It’s a mess. The rural-urban divide is creating a widespread trust issue. Trust, at its core is far more complex than the rational assessment of consumer perceptions, measured in surveys, for example. Our perceptions are influenced by many elements of our lives. And for most of us, farming is an abstract concept. The rural-urban divide widens as a result of our collective failure to fully respect and appreciate differing perspectives. The increasing lack of respect for farmers is fuelled by consumers’ unfamiliarity with the rural economy. At the heart of the trend, however, lies the concept of trust. The trustworthiness of farmers will always be limited by the physical and rational separation of consumers and agriculture. Agriculture is one element of complex globalized food chains that few consumers understand. Food paradoxes between trust and information have sparked a lot of discussion over the years. While most Canadians are unable to explain what a GMO (genetically modified organism) is, the majority don’t trust bio-technologies. In the same way, many

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Canadians believe supply management and our quota system serves our economy well yet can’t explain how it works. Of course, similar analogies can be made about other aspects of our lives, like cars or aircraft. But this is food, which Canadians buy and consume every day. Over the years, we’ve seen an accumulation of issues that make consumers second guess almost everything. Food safety incidents, price-fixing scandals, food fraud and mislabelling, trans fats … the list goes on. With food, uneducated cynicism leveraged by organized anti-farming advocacy is winning over logic. Along the way, our food systems are victimizing, starting with farmers. It’s been ugly. Consumers who trust farmers are willing to accept vulnerability, which is a central part of the concept of trust. Activists, on the other hand, will capitalize on vulnerability and on the fact that food systems lack transparency. Furthermore, conflicts between retailers, processors and farmers in a highly divided food industry give activists a greater chance of making consumers feel uneasy about the food system. Delivering information about agriculture, farmers and farming practices can go a long way to closing the gap. The keys are transparency and education. Valuing the economics of our food systems and building a case for why food is safe and affordable in Canada will be vital. We could produce food on a much smaller scale and eliminate livestock from our diets. But for most Canadians, this isn’t financially viable and is an affront to their culinary culture. Trust is a two-way street. To be listened to, Canadian farmers will also need to listen to consumers. After all, social media has made consumers the CEOs of the entire food chain – as they should be. Dr. Sylvain Charlebois is senior director of the agrifood analytics lab and a professor in food distribution and policy at Dalhousie University. troymedia.com


P.O. Box 850 Maidstone, SK S0M 1M0 Ph: (306) 893-2619 Fax: (306) 893-2660 Email: larrydoke@sasktel.net


“Know your vehicle’s scheduled maintenance recommendations.” Serving the producers of the Northwest


A community newspaper published Monthly . Owned & Operated by Prairie Newspaper Group LP a division of GVIC Communications Corp. 892 - 104th Street, North Battleford, Saskatchewan S9A 1M9 Telephone: 306-445-7261 • Fax: 306-445-3223 E-mail: newsoptimist.news@sasktel.net

Gordon Brewerton Senior Group Publisher


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The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020 - Page 3

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Mild, dry spring forecast for the Prairies Dryness could cause drought concerns Submitted The wait is over. AccuWeather’s annual Canada spring forecast is out, and our meteorologists are predicting a dry and mild season for the Prairies. Meanwhile, the changing of the seasons will promote a wet weather pattern for millions across Ontario and Quebec as well as an elevated flood risk. Take a look at the complete region-by-region breakdown as follows:

Dry weather to cause drought concerns in Canadian Prairies

Winter across the Canadian Prairies has not been as brutally cold as years past following only one sustained spell of bone-chilling cold in mid-January. Heading into the spring, the prospect for another

lengthy cold spell remains low. Overall, a dry and mild season is predicted for much of the region, including Winnipeg, Regina and Calgary. This dryness could cause some drought concerns ahead of the upcoming growing season. As of late January, there were pockets of abnormally dry conditions across the Prairies, according to the Canadian Drought Monitor. These areas may expand in the coming months, with the possibility of drought developing later in the spring. Despite the anticipated dry weather pattern, some residents in Manitoba still face a flood risk. “There is a moderate risk of major spring flooding along the Red River Valley in Manitoba later this spring as there

is a higher-than-normal amount of water frozen up in the underlying soil,“ AccuWeather Canadian Weather Expert Brett Anderson said.

Rainy pattern to bring flood risk to Ontario, Quebec

Canadians from Toronto to Montreal will be swapping out their snow boots for galoshes earlier than normal this year as the changing of the seasons brings spells of rainy weather. “A wet spring is shaping up from southern Ontario to southern Quebec and portions of the Maritimes,” Anderson said. However, there is still a chance of storms to unload snow over the region, especially in March. “Based on the current outlook, there is an increased risk of flooding

through the St. Lawrence Valley region this spring,” Anderson said. Despite the wet weather, ski resorts across the region have built up enough snow to remain open well into the spring. “Expect a good spring ski season in Quebec,” Anderson said. Meanwhile, areas that will face the highest flood risk are those near the shores of the Great Lakes. “The combination of more storms and abnormally high water levels in the Great Lakes will increase the risk of flooding and beach erosion along many lakeshores,” Anderson said. The wet pattern, paired with above-average soil temperatures due to a lack of sustained cold, may allow flowers and trees to blossom ahead of schedule, particularly in southeast-

ern Ontario. Meanwhile, areas farther north, such as Newfoundland and Labrador, can expect the icy grip of winter to remain entrenched across the region through much of the spring.

Strong end to ski season on tap for British Columbia, Canadian Rockies

British Columbia and the Canadian Rockies have faced an onslaught of storms throughout the winter months, but residents south of the Trans-Canadian Highway will see a break from the unsettled pattern heading into spring. The dominant storm track is expected to shift northward in the coming weeks with the bulk of the rain and snow forecast to fall over northern British

Columbia and the northern extent of the Canadian Rockies. However, ski resorts will continue to reap the benefits of these storms well into the spring. “Deep snowpack in the Canadian Rockies should lead to an excellent spring ski season,” Anderson said. Although skiers may celebrate the strong end to the season, the abundance of mountain snow isn’t good news for everyone. “As the snow melts, the risk of river and stream flooding down into the lower elevations of Alberta and British Columbia will increase during late spring,” Anderson said. The flood risk may be extended through the end of the spring in areas to the north that face rounds of storms through April and into May.

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Page 4 - The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020

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What is happening to our birds? By Nature Saskatchewan

In the fall of 2019 a report was published in the online journal Science indicating that since 1970, the United States and Canada have lost nearly three billion birds and in general, bird species have declined by an alarming 29 per cent. Of that, grassland bird species were found to be especially hit hard, with a 53 per cent decrease in population numbers. To many, the bird’s role in the ecosystem may seem insignificant. Often they go about fulfilling their role without much notice. In addition to being an important part of the food web they also play an important role in pest control. For instance, the endangered loggerhead shrike preys on pests such as rodents and grasshoppers while barn swallows are amazing aerial acrobats that feed on pesky mosquitoes. Many bird species also aid in seed dispersal, pollination and even help to keep the environment clean, as in the case of species such as the turkey vulture. Many people hear these heartbreaking statistics and feel this problem, while indeed sad, is just too big

Regional News-Optimist

Since 1970, the United States and Canada have lost nearly three billion birds

Turkey vultures help to keep the environment clean.

to do anything about on a local level. In fact, Nature Saskatchewan believes this

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is exactly where changes need to begin first. “Bird watching is one of the fastest growing outdoor activities in Canada,” says Lorne Scott, Conservation Director for Nature Saskatchewan. We can all do something to assist birds and nature, whether it be feeding birds, building nest boxes, preserving habitat on our properties or keeping our domestic cats indoors, we can all help birds in different ways,”. Simple measures taken by local residents, such as installing a film visible to birds on your home windows, using less plastics, gardening with native plants and joining citizen science projects will all have a positive effect. One of the biggest ways we can help is by teaching children and others about the importance of birds and why we should appreciate them. “It is common knowledge that children who spend time outdoors are

Saskatchewan’s Growth Plan envisions crushing more canola and processing more meat and pulse crops at home, increasing crop production as we grow Saskatchewan’s agri-food exports to $20 billion by 2030.

Predators such as the northern shrike are among the birds whose numbers are declining.

Nature Saskatchewan says one of the biggest ways we can help preserve bird species is by teaching children and others about the importance of birds and why we should appreciate them. Photos submitted

generally healthier. With an ever increasing urban population, children are further removed from nature. Field trips or nature hikes provide exercise and learning opportunities for all ages. Observing nature

in our communities and in parks can lead to outdoor projects that assist birds and provide outlets for new adventures,” says Scott. It is clear that changes need to be made if we hope to help the birds and

in turn help ourselves. But big change often happens when small steps are taken by many. To learn more about this study and what you can do to help, go to www.3billionbirds.org.

Hugh Nerlien

MLA- Kelvington-Wadena (306) 278-2200 nerlien.mla@sasktel.net

Todd Goudy

MLA - Melfort Constituency (306) 752-9500 goudymla@gmail.com

Learn more at saskgrowthplan.ca.

Fred Bradshaw

MLA - Carrot River Valley (306) 768-3977 fbradshaw.mla@sasktel.net

Delbert Kirsch MLA – Batoche

(306) 256-3930 batochemla@sasktel.net

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The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020 - Page 5

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Baking the perfect loaf Submitted Ever since early humans discovered how to grind grain, the art of breadmaking has flourished and today bread is the most widely consumed food in the world. The apron has now been replaced by the lab coat as scientists seek to understand the intricacies of creating healthier, more consistent commercial bread products that meet changing consumer demands. “Breadmaking is part art and part science,” said Dr. Filiz Koksel, an assistant professor of food and nutritional sciences at University of Manitoba. The art stems from the bakers’ deft touch with dough, but the science is “about what’s happening with ingredients.” Along with a team of colleagues, Koksel used the Canadian Light Source synchrotron at the University of Saskatchewan to explore how a call for reduced sodium in bakery products affects the billions of tiny bubbles that help make bread such an appealing food. Their work was recently published Food Research International. Her research stems from Health Canada recommendations that Canadians reduce the amount of sodium in their diets, “and

among all foods, bread and bread products contribute about 30 per cent of this excess consumption,” she said. Building on the PhD work of Dr. Xinyang Sun of Nanjing University of Finance and Economics in China, Koksel’s team, which included UM colleague Dr. Martin Scanlon and Dr. Michael Nickerson from USask, set out “to see if it’s easy to reduce sodium and to identify processing challenges related to using less salt.” The key to commercially produced bread is the crumb or texture that is created by an even distribution of uniform-sized bubbles throughout the dough, Koksel explained. Consumers of commercial breads like consistency,

meaning no big holes. In contrast, bakers of artisan breads like French baguettes strive for bubbles of varying size. Bubbles are an important consideration given “bread can be up to 80 per cent air by volume.” At the CLS, the researchers prepared simple non-yeast doughs to assess how varying the salt content affects bubble formation and dough-handling properties. They created a wide range of samples using two different wheat cultivars popular in bread making, various water and salt contents, and a number of dough-mixing times. Then, X-ray microtomography recorded real-time changes in the bubble size and distribution in the

samples. Using the non-destructive X-ray technique was critical to the study, said Koksel, because the delicate bubble structures would be destroyed if the samples were cut open for observation. The scientists found that reduced salt created a stickier dough, which has implications in large-scale processing when dough sticks to machinery. There were also fewer bubbles in the dough samples prepared using stronger wheat cultivars, higher water contents and shorter mixing times. In the end, all the variables tested require adjustment when salt is reduced to ensure a good-quality non-yeast low-sodium bread, but using the opti-

Scientists from the University of Manitoba use the Canadian Light Source at the University of Saskatchewan to analyze the bubbles in dough and help create healthier bread mal mixing time was of particular interest. “During mixing, three critically important tasks are taking place,” said Koksel. “First, mixing blends and hydrates the ingredients. It’s also critical to developing gluten proteins in the wheat, and to incorporating air bubbles into the dough. Mixing also affects the dough handling properties. Reducing sodium can end with a good result if water, the wheat cultivar and mixing are all optimized.”

Additional changes to bread formulations such as increasing fiber or reducing other additives will require similar evaluations, she said, “because with each change we’re facing new processing and product quality challenges.” This research had joint funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research as well as investment from the Saskatchewan Agricultural Development Fund.

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2007 Freightliner M2 Business Class flatbed tandem truck 576,341 km, 15,428 hrs .................................. $35,000

2018 Morris countour 2, 9450 tank dual shoot, NEW REDUCED ........................................................ SOLD


2015 Morris Contour 2, 41’, 10” Spacing, 9450 tank ................................................... CALL

2010 New Holland T9050HD, 2150 hrs, 16’ 6 way blade .............................$198,500 2012 Massey Ferguson 5475, loader grapple, 2800hrs ................................... $78,500 2008 John Deere 7330 FWA, 7000 hrs ............. $67,500 2013 Kubota M135GX, 3700hrs, loader ........... $68,500 2014 John Deere 9510R, 4wd 3300 hrs, 6 way 18’ blade pto, loaded...........................$340,000 2016 Kubota M6.141, loader, front suspension, 950hrs.................................$110,000

2005 Bourgault 5710, 54’, single shoot ............ $14,500 2008 Bourgault 6350 air cart, dual shoot.......... $38,500 2010 Morris 7240 air tank, tow between, 3 tank .............................................................. $34,500 2014 Morris 41’ countour 2, w/ 9450 tow between dual shoot ........................................... SOLD Morris FP70, 70’ heavy harrow, 22” average tine length .................................... $24,500


2017 Kubota M7.151s-ps, loader, grapple warranty, 450hrs REDUCED ................$129,500

2017 Kubota BV4580NT baler, DEMO 3 yr warranty, 0% 60m .......................... $47,000

2018 Kubota L4701HST, 47hp, 190hrs, hydro, loader....................................... $28,500

1998 Case 8465 baler............................................. SOLD

2016 Kubota SSV75 skid steer w/ bucket 150hrs............................................. $59,500 2007 Kubota BX1850, 220 hrs, 54” mower, 50” snowblower ............................... $8,500 Kubota BX1830, 354 hrs, 50” snowblower .................. Call

2012 Case SC101 16’ hay bine, rubber rollers ................................................... $32,500 2007 5456A AGCO Hesston Baler, 6500 bales ....................................................... $21,500


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2017 Massey 1726E, w/ loader, hydro, 26hp NEW full warranty ................................... $20,500

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Page 6 - The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020

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Regional News-Optimist

Hires Agro Division Manager PRAIRIE NORTH CO-OP – Larry Kohl, Agro Centre Manager at the Prairie North Agro Centre in Naicam has been promoted to Agro Division Manager for all of Prairie North Co-op Ag locations. Larry has 12 years of experience with the Co-op retail system – starting as Agro Manager for the Spalding Co-op. Then with the merger of Spalding and Prairie North Co-op Larry became the Agro Centre Manager at the Naicam Agro Centre. Prior to this he was a manager with the Saskatchewan Wheat Pool for 27 years. Larry’s leadership experience and operational insight will be a great asset in guiding the Prairie North Ag Division forward.


In his role as Agro Division Manager, Larry along with his team, will be looking for opportunities to grow and expand their existing Ag operations currently in the Archerwill, Kelvington, Melfort and Naicam communities. His team will be committed to excellence at every opportunity to serve their guests and their community. Their vision: “To be the trusted first choice in our community”. Larry started his new role on February 17, 2020.


The Naicam Agronomy Centre has a knowledgeable team to help our customers. L - R: Curtis Mills - Agro Manager, Jeff Henry - Agrologist, Larry Kohl - Agro Division Manager, Dave Nienaber - Hardware Manager At the Naicam Agronomy Centre we offer a variety of products and services: Fertilizer (Dry, Liquid & NH3), Seed, Chemical, Agronomic Services, Custom Hauling, Farm Hardware, Grain Storage, Augers, Lubricants, Feed, Animal Health, and Automotive Tires & Service Bay.

Naicam SK, 306-874-2477

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The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020 - Page 7


Hello, I’m Allen Woolsey, Ag Manager at the Prairie North Co-op at Melfort. I attended Lake Land College for my Ag Business Diploma and am a Technical Agrologist with the Saskatchewan Institute of Agrologists. I have been with the Prairie North Co-op for six years. Prairie North Co-op offers: • Fuel • Canola/forage seed • Crop inputs • Crop scouting • Aerial spraying • Dry & liquid fertilizers • Farm equipment • Large bins • Augers/conveyors • Feed • Ag hardware

Archerwill Agro Centre Products: • • • •

Paulette Irvine, CCA Agro Manager

Dry Fertilizer Chemical Canola & Forage Seed Bins & Equipment

Archerwill, SK • 306-323-2139

Our team looks forward to growing with you.

Melfort SK • Phone 306-752-2555

Victor Hawryluk, CCA Assistant Agro Manager

PRAIRIE NORTH CO-OP KELVINGTON AGRO DEPARTMENT • Seed treatments, herbicides, fungicides and desiccants available • Canola Seed and Forage Seed Sales • Fertilizer blends,straight product of dry and liquid, delivered directly to Farm • Micro Fertilizers and speciality Fertilizer products available on request • Agronomy Recommendations and Prescriptions available for Canola Seed, Crop Inputs and Fertilizer

• Field Scouting at all stages of crop growth • Farm Equipment Sales including Galvinized grain bins, Fertilizer Bins, TL augers, grain augers,auger motors, aeration fans, Opi cables and all related parts.

Greg Niezgoda Prairie North Co-op Petroleum Manager

Glenda Jeffrey


Please call us Today to discuss your Farm Operation’s needs.

Office: 306-327-9092 | Cell: 306-814-8701

Glenda was born and raised on her family’s farrow to finish hog operation/ certified grain farm in Bowsman, MB. She obtained a Bachler of Science in Agriculture from the University of Manitoba and began her career in Agriculture working in research, market development, sales and retail. Glenda obtained her Professional Agrologist Certification and continued a career in Agrology. Glenda followed her career to Saskatchewan in January 2000 and now has 26.5 years with the Co-op Retailing System. Glenda was hired on May 14, 2018 as our Agro Manager for the Kelvington Branch.

Natalie Kennedy Office: 306-327-9092 Cell: 306-620-3973

Born and raised on a mixed cattle/grain farm in South Eastern Ontario Natalie found a love for agriculture at a young age. Her interest in ag compelled her to move from her hometown to Western Canada. Natalie has lived in Western Canada for 6 years and has been with the Co-op for 3.5 years. She is the Assistant Agro Manager at the Kelvington location where she is involved in sales of crop inputs and farm equipment.

Greg Niezgoda Born and raised on a mixed cattle and grain farm in the Kelvington area. Started my career at East Central Coop as a driver/salesman, later becoming Petroleum Manager Have 16 years with the Coop retailing system. • Naicam and Melfort Bulk Fuel Deliveries; 2 Tandem Trucks and 1 Tanker Trailer - Drivers are Rudy Althouse and Cory Knutson

• Archerwill and Kelvington Bulk Fuel Deliveries; 1 TriDrive and 1 Tandem Truck - Drivers are Darrin Boen and Brad Guy

• Cardlock locations are: St Brieux, Melfort, Naicam, Archerwill, Rose Valley and Kelvington • Bulk Storage tanks are available from sizes 4,000L to 75,000L plus all accessories • We also offer Bulk Oil Deliveries for all our Prairie North Customers.

Kelvington, SK 306-327-7774

Page 8 - The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020

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Leah Mertz – The 10th Saskatchewanderer Submitted Musician, self-proclaimed digital fanatic and voiceover artist, Leah Mertz has officially been announced as the 2020 Saskatchewanderer. Hailing from Saskatoon, Leah has plans to explore Saskatchewan and connect with the residents who make this province such a wonderful place to live and visit. “I’ve always had an innate passion for storytelling and sharing people’s voices no matter how big or small,� 2020 Saskatchewanderer Leah Mertz said. “The people are what make this province great, and I will work closely with everyone I meet to honour Saskatchewan’s cultural vibrancy, entrepreneurial spirit, vast diversity, and its beautiful landscape. I grew up on the prairies, and despite living all across Canada the past decade, I knew the prairies were where I was meant to be. More specifically, I knew Saskatchewan was where I was meant to be. I look forward to continuing the great work of the previous wanderers, and with your help, tell your stories and showcase this province like never before. It’s 2020 and we’re going big!� “Now in its tenth year, the Saskatchewanderer program continues as a successful marketing strategy to showcase our province as a great place to live, work and play,� Parks, Culture and Sport Minister and Minister Responsible for Tourism Saskatchewan Gene Makowsky said. “I look forward to following Leah on her journey to discovering unique Saskatchewan experiences includ-

‘I’ve always had an innate passion for storytelling and sharing people’s voices no matter how big or small’

ing our provincial parks, food, beverage and tourism industries and the events that draw people to our communities annually.� “Saskatchewan is a remarkable place, and the Saskatchewanderer program brings widespread attention to the wealth of tourism experiences available in our province,�   Tourism Saskatchewan CEO Mary Taylor-Ash said. “It is a pleasure to welcome Leah as the 2020


Saskatchewanderer. Her curiosity and enthusiasm, combined with her background in content marketing and passion for exploration, will ensure that her stories resonate with tourists and residents alike.� For the first time, the Saskatchewanderer program welcomes a new title sponsor, Conexus Credit Union. Conexus is a Saskatchewan-based and owned co-operative, helping to improve the financial well-being of its members and communities. As a contributing sponsor, Conexus Credit Union will help ensure the program continues so that all great Saskatchewan stories can be told. “Being from Saskatchewan, we know firsthand how amazing

Leah Mertz has officially been announced as the 2020 Saskatchewanderer. Hailing from Saskatoon, Leah has plans to explore Saskatchewan and connect with the residents who make this province such a wonderful place to live and visit.

this province is,� Conexus Credit Union Executive Vice President, Retail Banking Jacques DeCorby said. “From the people who live here, to the unique businesses across the province and a booming entrepreneurial ecosystem. The Saskatchewanderer Program helps to promote our diverse province and we’re excited to partner with the program so they can continue sharing our province’s story, and showing the rest of the world why Saskatchewan isn’t just a place to be from,


but the place to be.� CAA Saskatchewan is back in the driver’s seat as the official vehicle sponsor. The Wanderer will be safer behind the wheel, thanks to CAA for providing a vehicle, a CAA Saskatchewan membership, and gas vouchers. “For a decade, we’ve been a proud supporter of the Saskatchewander program,� CAA Saskatchewan President and CEO Fred Titanich said. “We are pleased to be part of the 10th anniversary celebrations with Leah Mertz.

With over 100 years’ experience in the travel, insurance, automotive, and roadside assistance business, our experienced staff are here to assist Leah as she showcases all that Saskatchewan has to offer.� Follow Leah’s year of wandering the province on Facebook (www.facebook. com/skwanderer), Twitter (@skwanderer), Instagram (@saskatchewanderer) or YouTube (www.youtube. com/user/skwandererofficial).  Read up on her latest adventures by visiting www. saskatchewanderer.ca.

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The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020 - Page 9


A perfect storm for Saskatchewan farmers Saskatchewan producers require a better backstop from both the provincial and federal governments to address current income shortfalls Todd Lewis, President

Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan

If ever there was a time when we needed a strong voice to stand up for our industry, it was this past year. 2019 was a difficult year for farmers and ranchers in this province, and APAS worked hard at being Saskatchewan’s agricultural voice at many venues and tables across Canada. In 2020 we’ll dig deep to keep learning about the issues raised by our membership, have productive discussions, and offer constructive solutions to problems facing Saskatchewan producers. Sask farmers faced weather problems in 2019, and many other issues besides. China closed its borders to Canadian canola, pork, and beef imports. The carbon tax began to affect producers’ bottom lines, especially those drying grain. Crop pricing and grading has become unpredictable. We had yet another rail service disruption. Farm income is down 45 per cent from two years ago and we are seeing the results in the economy. Just talk to the farm machinery dealers; sales have collapsed on many types of equipment. Producers using grain dryers were particularly hard hit in 2019 by the added cost of the carbon tax. It is both frustrating and ironic that one of the most easily recognizable adaptations to climate change – grain drying – has been targeted by the carbon tax. Without this valuable tool and innovation, many more millions of acres would be left out in Saskatchewan fields this winter and

tens of millions of bushels of harvestable crops would be at risk of spoilage or prove unsellable due to tough and damp conditions. In 2020 APAS will continue to work towards carbon tax exemptions for essential farm activities such as grain drying and transportation. Business risk management programming is ineffective to mitigate the current problems. We are experiencing an almost perfect storm of problems in our international trade environment. The well-documented trade disruptions between Canada and our major trading partners in India, China, Italy, and Saudi Arabia have had a negative impact on the price we receive for our products. At the same time, our input prices are being artificially supported upwards by US farm policy that is transferring billions of dollars to the American farm sector to mitigate income issues caused by US trade wars. Saskatchewan producers require a better backstop from both the provincial and federal governments to address the current income shortfalls being experienced by many Sask producers. APAS will continue to offer up ideas to make current programs more relevant as well as designing new programs to help producers get past our current trade problems. The results of the federal election make for an interesting lobbying environment at the federal level. We will continue to talk to all political parties at all levels of government. It is our job to talk about farm policies to the people that form government as well as the opposition. APAS is well situated to lobby a minority government.

Todd Lewis

We are recognized and trusted as being nonpartisan and look forward to working with Sask MPs as well as all federal parties to improve policies for Saskatchewan producers. In 2019, APAS retained 98 per cent of participating RMs and welcomed nine more transitional members, for a total of 137 RMs. As we prepare to celebrate 20 years as Saskatchewan’s general farm organization in July 2020, these numbers mark an all-time membership high. We have never been a stronger voice for Saskatchewan producers, and there is no better time to join us. Todd Lewis farms near Gray.

SCA elects new chair at the 2020 AGM Arnold Balicki from Shellbrook takes the reins Submitted The Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association has announced the election of Arnold Balicki as the new chairman of the board of directors. His election comes as the SCA held their AGM at the 2020 Saskatchewan Beef Industry Conference in Saskatoon. “It is with a great deal of enthusiasm that I look forward to working with our board and staff to better our cattle industry, and to provide our consumers with the understanding of how important a role our industry plays in their everyday lives. I want to thank our out going chair, Rick Toney, for his leadership and dedication in his term as chair. A big thank you also goes out to the board of directors for entrusting me as their new chair.” Balicki will chair the board and executive of

SCA. Rounding out the executive are: Keith Day, vice chair from Kyle; Dean Moore, finance chair from Paradise Hill; Brad Welter, member at large from

Viscount; and past chair Rick Toney from Gull Lake. SCA would also welcomes newly elected board members Randy Stokke

District 4, Brian Cole District 8 and Garrett Poletz from SCFA. The 2020 AGM included policy discussions, a Young Producers Forum,


and a screening of the documentary Guardians of the Grasslands. The Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association works to develop and promote the

success of all production sectors of the Saskatchewan beef cattle industry through effective representation from all regions of the province.

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Page 10 - The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020

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Phosphorus 101: The basic BMPs By Warren Ward

Phosphorus soil tests are fairly low for some fields and unless fertilizer rates are high enough to match crop removal, this will start to affect yield potential. Here are the basic best management practices for phosphorus fertilizer. Use the right soil test The Olsen test is effective across a wide range of soils, including the high pH calcareous soils common in Manitoba and Saskatchewan, while the Bray test is effective only in neutral to lower pH, non-calcareous soil as are found in parts of Alberta and Saskatchewan. Kelowna and modified Kelowna tests are also considered effective in the pH range on most of the soils in the Northern Great Plains.

Think about the right rate

Canola takes up 1.25 to 1.5 pounds of phosphate for each bushel, and about one pound per bushel is removed in the seed. Soybeans remove about 0.85 pounds of phosphate per bushel. Peas are 0.68 pounds per bushel, wheat is 0.59 and barley is 0.43. Corn is also fairly low, at 0.44 pounds per bushel of yield, but with its high

yields, the actual amount removed is higher than most other crops. Farmers tend to follow one of these three philosophies when it comes to P fertilizer rates: Sufficiency approach. Apply just enough to meet the bare minimum for yield, with the crop taking up the rest of what it needs from soil reserves. This can maximize net return from fertilizer in the year of application but will drain soil reserves. Once soil reserves are medium to low, as shown in a soil test, this approach will hurt yields and profitability. Removal approach. This aims to match application rate to expected crop removal based on yield targets. This will not build soil P amounts but should not reduce them either. Build and Maintenance approach. Apply fertilizer P at rates in excess of crop removal to slowly increase soil P levels to an adequate level. Even for soil with high levels of phosphate, Alberta-based soil fertility expert Ross McKenzie recommends 15 lb./ac. of seed-placed phosphate for the pop-up benefit. However, once soil P levels are very high, he says phos-

Warren Ward

phate fertilizer is not needed.

Choose the right product

Most phosphate fertilizer products will do the job. Whether monoammonium phosphate (11-52-0/12-510) or liquid polyphosphate (10-34-0), the key is to apply enough to match crop removal or, as a short-term alternative, meet the sufficiency requirement. If applying manure… A 40-ton-per-acre application of feedlot manure can provide about 600 lb./ ac. of phosphate. Swine and poultry manure will have higher concentrations, and phosphorus and nitrogen can be in almost equal parts. Test manures to avoid over-application



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of phosphate. Soil with manure applications may not require P fertilizer (or potassium, sulphur and micronutrients) for five years or more depending on application rates and type of manure applied.

Figure out the right placement

Seed-placed rates that exceed 15-20 lb./ac. of phosphate can start to reduce plant counts. Dry conditions and lighttextured soil increase risk of stand thinning from seed-placed fertilizer. Increased soil moisture lowers the risk to seedling injury. This rate also ensures all seeds are in fairly close proximity to phosphate prills or droplets. Because this rate is not enough to match crop removal, the ideal practice is to split the application and put the rest in a side or mid-row band. Another option is to put higher rates with other crops in the rotation, achieving the crop-removal balance with a whole-farm approach applied over time.

Deficiency symptoms not obvious

These are very difficult to identify with phosphorus. Often severely deficient fields don’t show any major outward symptoms, which is why Jeff Schoenau, professor of soil fertility at the University of Saskatchewan, uses the

term “hidden hunger” to describe phosphorus deficiencies. Growth rate and vigour are often stunted, but this only becomes obvious when compared side by side with plants that are not deficient. For more on canola nutrient management, includ-

ing images of deficiency symptoms, visit canolawatch.org and canolaencyclopedia.ca. Warren Ward is an agronomy specialist with the Canola Council of Canada. Email him at wardw@canolacouncil. org.

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The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020 - Page 11

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USask Global Institute for Food Security partners with Bangladesh to promote sustainability Submitted The Global Institute for Food Security at the University of Saskatchewan and the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council of the Bangladesh Ministry of Agriculture have agreed to a multidisciplinary research, training and development partnership to help promote sustainable food security in the country. The aim of the five-year Memorandum of Understanding, signed on Feb. 10, is to advance knowledge and technologies for agricultural research and development in Bangladesh. This work will take place through a consortium jointly led by GIFS and BARC, the council which co-ordinates the National Agricultural Research System on behalf of the Bangladesh Ministry of Agriculture. The consortium will work with partners in Canada and Bangladesh to deliver programs focused on enhancing farmer incomes, addressing the effects of climate change in Bangladesh, and strengthening the country’s delivery of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. “BARC’s vision is to develop an efficient, effective and sustainable system of agricultural research, promoting an increased standard of living for and well-being of the people of Bangladesh,” said Bangladesh Minister of Agriculture Muhammad Abdur Razzaque. “This

partnership with GIFS will support our government’s plans to achieve this vision, and go a long way to strengthen Bangladesh’s relationship with Saskatchewan and Canada.” The consortium plans to create an agricultural research centre in Bangladesh, in honour of Canada’s support during the Bangladesh War of Independence and the long-standing bilateral relationship between both countries. The mission to Bangladesh included representatives from USask research organizations including: the Global Institute for Water Security; the Colleges of Agriculture and Bioresources, Arts and Science, and Pharmacy and Nutrition; and the Canadian Light Source, as well as from the National Research Council. GIFS plans to work with these teams to design and deliver diverse research, training and development programs. “Collaboration is a key strength of GIFS, as we are able to bring diverse partners together to discover, develop and deliver innovative agriculture solutions that are economically and environmentally sustainable, and have the social license to operate,” said Stephen Visscher (CBE), GIFS’ director of strategic partnerships and chief operating officer. “We are excited to be able to develop this initiative with Bangladesh,

in a relationship that will enhance food security and support Saskatchewan and Canada’s trade strategies with key markets, while highlighting the strengths of our agriculture, research and development sectors.” Saskatchewan is a leading Canadian agri-food exporter, with $13.4 billion in sales in 2018. Bangladesh is one of the province’s top 10 markets: 2018 exports totaled $306 million, with major exports being lentils, wheat, peas and potash. “While Saskatchewan and Bangladesh may seem like they are worlds apart, we already have a long-standing trade relationship,” said Saskatchewan Minister of Agriculture David Marit. “I am happy to see that relationship extended to our research communities so we can build off of our strengths and work towards an agricultural future that can provide food security for billions.” The visit to Bangladesh was preceded by a Bangladesh mission to GIFS in fall 2019, during which delegates toured USask institutes to learn about transferable research, training and development opportunities. “Like Saskatchewan, agriculture is an important sector of Bangladesh’s economy,” said Mizanur Rahman, Bangladesh’s High Commissioner to Canada. “I look forward to the resulting shared knowledge from this partnership,

which will help strengthen the sector even further and enhance quality of life in Bangladesh.” The MOU was signed at a formal ceremony in Bangladesh, after months of planning and negotiations

among GIFS, BARC and other partners. “Canada and Bangladesh have a strong bond that goes back several decades and includes billions of dollars in bilateral trade annually,” said Benoit Pré-

fontaine, Canada’s High Commissioner to Bangladesh. “This partnership will further enhance our relationship and provide opportunities to share Canada’s resources and expertise with Bangladesh.”

wanted Information on anyone illegally selling the Snowbird variety of Faba Beans.

Snowbird faba beans are protected under UPOV legisla�on and it is illegal to sell non-pedigreed seed for plan�ng. Non-pedigreed seed that is sold hurts our industry by no royalty collec�on that gets paid back to research and development of new varie�es. You can help prevent this ac�vity by contac�ng Canadian Plant Technology Agency at:

cpta@sasktel.net or 888-450-4116

Page 12 - The Battlefords, Thursday, February 20, 2020

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Regional News-Optimist


Economic stagnation plagues us despite G7 rank

The notion that leading the G7 is evidence of strong economic performance or rapid growth in living standards is not simply off base, it’s dangerous By Ben Eisen and Finn Poschmann The Fraser Institute

Recent forecasts suggest Canada may compete with the United States for the top spot in the G7 in 2020 for economic growth. Those forecasts include one from the International Monetary Fund. Political partisans have since flooded social media with the impressive-sounding factoid that Canada may lead the G7 in growth next year. There’s nothing new about this talking point; partisans trot it out regularly when it suits their purposes. There’s just one problem: Different population growth rates among G7 countries mean that straight comparisons of gross domestic product (GDP) growth numbers produce skewed results. Canada’s population growth ensures it will almost always be at or near the top of a slow-moving pack. Most G7 countries feature minimal population increases and weak economic growth. Japan provides the most striking example. With an aging population that shrunk by two million in the past decade, its economy is barely growing. Between 1999 and 2018, average nominal growth in Japan was just 0.2 per cent. Other G7 members (France, Germany and Italy) also have slow-growing populations and economies. While Canada’s population has grown 1.1 per cent per year in the past decade, Germany’s has grown by 0.4 per cent. Even though it’s composed of some of the richest countries in the world, the G7 is a slow-growth club and topping the list in topline growth is nothing to crow about. Because population is growing a little faster in Canada and the U.S. compared to other advanced economies, one of the two North American G7 members will lead the pack in growth almost every year. In fact, in 14 out of the past 15 years, Canada or the U.S. has led the G7 in nominal GDP growth. And almost every year, Canada is

at or near the top of the G7 ranking. Of course, it’s generally good news that Canada’s population is growing fast compared to other G7 countries, and that nominal GDP has kept up. And perhaps more overall growth will give Canada relatively more weight to throw around in future trade and climate change negotiations. However, the notion that leading (or almost leading) the G7 is evidence of strong economic performance or rapid growth in living standards is not simply off base, it’s dangerous. Why? Because comparing nominal Canadian economic growth to the slow-growth G7 club – and then bragging about our apparent success – may blind us to the fact that Canada has been plagued for years by slow inflation-adjusted per-person economic growth. In fact, real per-person GDP didn’t budge much in Canada during the past

decade, averaging 0.6 per cent per year. And when real per-person income has almost completely stagnated, that should raise serious concerns about what we can do to attract more investment, increase productivity and create a policy environment more conducive to growth. This won’t happen, however, if we continue to pat ourselves on the back for appearing annually near the top of the slow-growth club known as the G7. So the topline growth rate is not just a misleading talking point, it’s a dangerous one that ought to be retired once and for all. That would allow for a more constructive conversation about how to break out of the economic stagnation that has gripped our country for too long. Ben Eisen and Finn Poschmann are analysts at the Fraser Institute. www.troymedia.com

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