Tuesday, May 22, 2018

China, U.S. reach trade truce

China and the United States have reached a trade truce agreement that President Donald Trump says it good news for farmers.

He said they can produce as much as they want now that China has lifted its trade restrictions on pork and soybeans.

That is not only good news for U.S. farmers, but also Canadians because prices for both countries move together.

However, it also means that Chinese buyers will no longer be quite so keen about buying Canadian pork and soybeans to fill the gap when they weren’t buying from the U.S.

Deere poised to raise prices

Deere and Co. told stock market followers that it plans to increase prices this year to offset rising costs.

It said U.S. President Donald Trump’s tariffs on steel and aluminum have raised those costs and transportation is more expensive.

The company said it will be cutting costs and increasing prices to improve its profits, and the stock-market watchers responded by bidding higher prices to buy Deere shares.

Herbal supplement contaminated

Health officials in North Carolina say kratom from Southeast Asia is the source of salmonella they found in herbal supplements marketed by a company in Asheville.

The company is recalling its products, but said tests by an independent lab it uses failed to detect the salmonella; state lab tests found it.

The Centres for Disease Control reports that 132 people in 38 states have been sickened by salmonella in imported kratom.

So far neither the Canadian Food Inspection Agency nor the Public Health Agency of Canada has said anything about imported kratom.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Horses neglected, owners face charges

Three people will be in court July 6 to answer to charges that they neglected horses at their farm near Stouffville.
The Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals investigated after it received a tip from a concerned observer and an inspector found 14 horses and one pony living in unsanitary conditions.
Later another 10 horses were found buried with indications that they had starved to the point of eating wooden fencing.
The charges include permitting an animal to be in distress, failing to provide adequate food and failing to provide care necessary for general welfare.
The surviving horses have been re-homed and the OSPCA said Friday it is monitoring their care.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Weed inspector warns about garlic mustard

Weed inspector John Benham of Wellington County is warning farmers about garlic mustard.

It’s leaves are poisonous to insects and some animals and it soils the soil for crops.

“It prefers damper locations but will thrive almost anywhere,” Benham writes.

It has a two-year life cycle, growing close to the ground the first year and three feet tall the second year.

It has white rosette flowers in April and produces seed pods similar to the rest of the mustard family. Each pod can contain 10 to 20 seeds and there will possibly be 100 to 150 pods per plant that are shed during the summer and fall.

“One seed can very quickly become a patch that keeps growing each year,”Benham writes.

“Another trait is that it stays green throughout the winter and so is ready in the spring to complete its life cycle before other plants and so can out-compete the other desirable plants.

At least one species of butterfly is tricked into laying its eggs on this plant only to discover the larvae will not be able to eat the plant and so they perish.

Another trick it has is to grow with an ‘S’ in the stem near the root and so if it is pulled the stock breaks at that point and the root remains with the opportunity to send up a new seed head.

“I feel its biggest threat is to forests in that it produces a colony like a mat that in many ways discourages forest regeneration with the result the forest deteriorates,” Benham writes.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Arsenault heads CSHIN

The Canadian Pork Council and the Canadian Association of Swine Veterinarians are pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Christa Arsenault as the new Manager of the Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network (CSHIN).
“Having been a CSHIN member and a member of the Canadian Animal Health Surveillance System, Dr. Arsenault has a good understanding of the challenges of the industry. She brings a wealth of knowledge and will be able to put forth her ideas to further the work of the network to the benefit of the entire pork sector,” said Canadian Pork Council Chair Rick Bergmann.
Dr. Arsenault is a Lead Veterinarian, in Animal Health and Welfare at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. She has also been employed as Veterinary Inspector with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and worked in private practice.  
Dr. Arsenault succeeds Dr. Chris Byra who first set up the Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network

Another small-bird chicken processor gets ok

Chicken Farmers of Ontario has approved a tthird processor for the small-bird market which is particularly popular at Portuguese barbecue outlets.

Sure Fresh Foods Inc., of Bradford, Ontario, is planning to start processing ‘Small Whole Birds’ for the Portuguese barbeque market in early fall of 2018.

Before the chicken board launched its program for small whole birds, the Portuguese barbecue restaurants and outlets were starved for supplies because the processors who had been serving them dropped that line because it was less profitable.

Two new processors could only get into the market because the chicken board, which rations birds among processors, has chosen to supply them.

Two new processors could only get into the market because the chicken board, which rations birds among processors, has chosen to supply them. Farm Fresh Poultry of Harriston was supplying this market previously and has been included in the marketing board’s new program.

Conscious Living Cuisine Processing Ltd. is the third processor in this category.