GOVERNMENTS, UNIVERSITY OF SASKATCHEWAN AND INDUSTRY INVEST IN LIVESTOCK AND FORAGE CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE
Released on July 30, 2015
Today Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart committed $10 million in funding under Growing Forward 2 for a new Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence at the University of Saskatchewan. The University of Saskatchewan has committed an additional $7 million for construction costs in addition to providing land. The Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association (SCA) is also contributing $1 million to the project.
The new centre will serve as a unique research, teaching, outreach and industry training hub that unites agriculture and veterinary researchers, producers, industry, governments and academia. The Centre of Excellence will integrate and expand on the many existing strengths in University of Saskatchewan veterinary and agricultural sciences, the Western Beef Development Centre, government and industry.
"This centre will facilitate research needed to keep improving our industry competitiveness, profitability and resilience," Saskatchewan Cattlemen's Association Chair Bill Jameson said. "The valuable knowledge generated here will impact livestock and forage producers throughout the province and across the country."
The Centre of Excellence will incorporate and build on the collaborative work of University of Saskatchewan and government researchers in areas such as herd health, animal welfare, disease prevention, nutrition, management, public health, environmental stewardship, food safety and security, forage utilization, breeding and development. The Centre of Excellence will integrate resources and undertake relevant livestock and forage research, provide hands-on training opportunities for agriculture and veterinary students and transfer knowledge from researchers to farmers, ranchers, processors and exporters. This will benefit both consumers and the Canadian economy.
Growing Forward 2 is a cost-shared partnership between federal, provincial and territorial governments designed to support an innovative, competitive and profitable Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector.
Posted August 7, 2015
2015 SASKATCHEWAN FORAGE INDUSTRY INNOVATION AWARD
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) is pleased to announce presentation of the 2015 Forage Industry Innovation Award to Janice Bruynooghe at the Council’s Annual Meeting held June 23, 2015 near Lanigan, SK. This award recognizes exemplary innovation, leadership, service and stewardship in Saskatchewan’s forage industry.
With 20 years experience in the forage and livestock industry, Janice has focused on creating working relationships and a partnership approach for all forage sector stakeholders. Her efforts with the Saskatchewan Forage Council have led to an average 15:1 return on investment for industry levy dollars which has resulted in numerous research and industry advancement projects.
The Saskatchewan Forage Council extends their sincere congratulations to Janice Bruynooghe on receiving the 2015 Forage Industry Innovation Award. In honour of Janice, the SFC will make a contribution in her name to the Alicia Hargrave Memorial Bursary, College of Agriculture and Bioresources at the University of Saskatchewan.
Posted August 4, 2015
SASKATCHEWAN PRAIRIE CONSERVATION ACTION PLAN MANAGER POSITION
The Saskatchewan Prairie Conservation Action Plan (SK PCAP) consists of 30 organizations representing producers, industry, provincial and federal governments, environmental non-government organizations and research/educational institutions working towards a common vision of native prairie conservation within Saskatchewan’s Prairie Eco-zone.
The position has the possibility of either part-time or full-time hours. The individual will work under the direction and supervision of the Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association General Manager at the office located in Regina, Saskatchewan. Flexibility of options will be entertained and salary will be based on experience.
To read more about this position or to find out how to apply, click here
Posted July 27, 2015
DROUGHT AFFECTED RANCHERS WOULD BENEFIT FROM TAX DEFERRAL
Saskatchewan Stockgrowers Association, June 21, 2015
Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association (SSGA) President, Doug
Gillespie, today asked the federal government to take the steps required
to allow drought stricken ranchers to defer taxes on livestock they
have been forced to sell due to dry conditions.
In announcing the request Gillespie said, “Livestock producers in
several areas across Saskatchewan are reporting hay yields that are from
50%-70% below normal as well as poor growth on pastures. As a result,
many producers could be forced to sell portions of their breeding
Gillespie added, “While recent rains will improve pasture conditions
in some areas, it is too late for many hay crops as well as any
producers forced to sell due to poor pasture growth earlier in the
“We have had reports from producers indicating that hay is in short
supply across the province with prices running at record high levels,”
said Gillespie, “We expect many producers will find it difficult to find
the feed required to carry their cowherds through the winter, depending
on whether some drought damaged grain crops can be salvaged for forage
to be used in cattle feed.”
The SSGA’s tax deferral request is aimed at a federal policy provision
whereby the Ministers of Agriculture and Finance can designate certain
areas as significantly impacted by drought. This in turn allows
producers in these areas to defer a portion of the tax due on breeding
animals sold due to drought until the following year. This provision
helps producers retain some of the cash required to rebuild their herds
when drought conditions abate.
To view the full article, click here.
Posted July 27, 2015
SASKATCHEWAN FORAGE COUNCIL AGM AND FIELD DAY A SUCCESS!
This year's AGM and tour was held on June 23 near Lanigan, SK
in conjunction with the Western Beef Development Centre (WBDC) field
day. Keynote speaker was Jim Gerrish and the day featured a number of
speakers and an afternoon bus tour.
If you missed this event, audio-synched versions of Jim Gerrish's presentations and Kathy Larson's
presentation are now posted on YouTube on the Western Beef Development Centre YouTube channel. Click on the links below to view materials or watch presentations.
2015 Summer Field Day Handbook (pdf)
AM Presentation-Jim Gerrish-What Really Matters in Grazing Management
AM Presentation-Kathy Larson-Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey Results
PM Presentation-Jim Gerrish-Pasture Improvements-How do you know that it will pay?
Gerrish-Cost-Benefit Calculator for Pasture Improvements (excel)
Posted July 18, 2015
SASKATCHEWAN HAY HARVEST CHALLENGE
The Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, Central Testing Laboratories and Saskatchewan Peavey Mart locations are working together to promote the Saskatchewan Hay Harvest Challenge to raise awareness of the importance of feed testing.
The nutrient content of forage is highly variable, particularly in a year like this when sources of feed not normally relied on will be utilized. Matching the nutrients supplied by the forage with livestock nutrient requirements is only possible if the nutrient content of the forage is known. Submitting forage samples for feed testing provides producers with forage quality information that can be used to help manage the winter feeding period.
Prizes for the Saskatchewan Hay Harvest Challenge include four $250 vouchers for feed testing analysis sponsored by Central Testing Laboratories and a $1,000 voucher for in-store merchandise purchase from a Saskatchewan Peavey Mart location. Entry forms are found in the official field record book. A copy of the feed test results should be submitted with the entry form. Entries are submitted to the Agriculture Knowledge Centre and all entries must be received by January 15, 2016.
For more information or to obtain an official field record book contact your local Regional Forage Specialist, call the Agriculture Knowledge Centre at 1-866-457-2377 or read the full Hay Harvest Challenge article.
Posted July 15, 2015
SASKATCHEWAN HAY & PASTURE REPORT-JUNE EDITION
The latest edition of the Hay & Pasture Report is now available online.
June brings us the second edition of the 2015 Hay and Pasture Report. The 2015 growing season has brought challenging conditions: late spring frost and dry conditions in many parts of Saskatchewan and damaging wind and hail in some areas. Reports from around the province are that hay fields generally look poor and many are concerned about having adequate forage supplies for the upcoming year. The Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) accumulated precipitation map from September 1, 2014 to June 18, 2015 indicates that most areas of Saskatchewan have received between 150-300 mm of precipitation in that period, with Western Saskatchewan receiving less than the eastern portion of the province.
Read on to learn more about adding legumes to annual crop rotations, planning for and managing pastures during drought, alfalfa in perennial pastures and more. Every issue of the Report also contains the most recent Saskatchewan Agriculture Crop Report and a summary of forage market information from Saskatchewan and surrounding jurisdictions.
Go to Saskatchewan Forage Council Resources on this website or click here to open the pdf version of the report.
Posted July 7, 2015
SASKATCHEWAN FORAGE COUNCIL WELCOMES NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) is pleased to announce the hiring of Leanna Rousell as their new Executive Director.
Leanna Rousell comes to the SFC having experience working with producer associations tied to the livestock industry including the Canadian Cattle Identification Agency and the WHLZ project as well as administrative experience at Saskatoon Livestock Sales. Leanna is looking forward to taking over this role following the resignation of former Executive Director, Leanne Thompson.
Rousell is excited about this new position and remarks “As a forage and livestock producer myself, I appreciate the work done by this organization in the past on extension and communication of forage related issues and hope to carry on this tradition as I take over the Executive Director role.”
Saskatchewan Forage Council President, Kelly Williamson says, “The Board looks forward to working with Leanna. She has a keen interest in the forage industry and we look forward to her new perspective on projects and direction for the organization. At this time we would also like to thank Leanne Thompson for her work with the SFC. Many of our successes and advancements in the industry are in large part due to her efforts.”
Leanna will be operating the Saskatchewan Forage Council from her home office located near Asquith, SK. Please note that contact information for the Saskatchewan Forage Council including mailing address, phone and fax numbers are changed effective immediately.
For more information, please contact:
Leanna Rousell, Executive Director
Saskatchewan Forage Council
Kelly Williamson, President
Saskatchewan Forage Council
Posted May 1, 2015
SASKATCHEWAN FORAGE MARKET REPORT-WINTER 2015
The January 2015 Saskatchewan Forage Market Report is the result of information gathered from a diverse group of forage industry stakeholders in Saskatchewan and surrounding jurisdictions in the winter of 2014/2015. This report presents a summary of forage prices and markets in 2014 and provides information pertaining to the upcoming 2015 growing season.
The quality of the 2014 forage crop is inconsistent in Saskatchewan due to precipitation and late harvest in some regions. In general, producers who were able to harvest hay in the first few weeks of July have good quality hay, while those that were not able to complete harvest in that time may have seen an extended haying season into late July and August due to rains and humidity.
Forage prices remain
mixed in late 2014 and early 2015, with variations in pricing based on quality
and demand. Prices have remained
relatively steady over the past 12 months with slightly more hay on offer in
early 2015 than in January 2014 but not a lot of hay trading locally at this
time. The 2014/2015 winter season has been mild as compared to the past two
years but livestock producers are still working to rebuild forage supplies and
are wary of approaching another potentially cool early growing season with
insufficient hay on hand.
Posted March 17, 2015
GRAZING RESPONSE INDEX (GRI) FACTSHEET
The Saskatchewan Forage Council in partnership with Ducks Unlimited, the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada are currently undertaking an ADOPT (Agriculture Demonstration of Practices and Technologies), which will demonstrate the use of the grazing response index on Saskatchewan pastures.
The Grazing Response Index (GRI) is a relatively new,
easy-to-use pasture monitoring tool designed to assist pasture managers to
understand how plants and their native rangelands respond to grazing.
AAFC’s 4-page factsheet discusses the strengths of GRI and explains in
detail how to use the tool and interpret the results for optimized grazing
management. An additional 2-page insert walks the reader through a GRI
assessment and includes a blank GRI assessment worksheet.
The ADOPT project demonstration site is located at the Ducks Unlimited Torchwood Hills Conservation Ranch near Lestock,SK. More information resulting from this demonstration will be available at field days at the Ranch, posted on the SFC website and in the final report.
Posted December 17, 2014
SASKATCHEWAN PASTURE TOUR RESOURCES
Listed below are links to useful resources related to the topics being covered on the Saskatchewan Pasture Tour on August 7, 2014. Click the links to navigate to the page you are interested in viewing.
TRACE MINERALS IN SK PASTURES *FINAL REPORT COMPLETE*
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) is pleased to announce completion of a multi-year research project “Trace Minerals on Saskatchewan Pastures: Effect of Season, Location, and Forage Species”. The final report is now available on the SFC website along with four factsheets– one for each of the soil zones in Saskatchewan. Results from this project will be of great use to livestock producers, extension staff and nutritionists across Saskatchewan and in Western Canada in developing trace mineral supplementation programs for grazing beef cattle.
The project looked at the effect of season (spring vs fall) and soil zone on the trace mineral content of commonly grazed forages in Saskatchewan including both tame and native species. Results indicate that season, forage species and soil zone all affect trace mineral content of forage and should be taken into account to ensure that trace mineral deficiencies in grazing beef cattle are avoided.
Prior to this study, there was a lack of locally relevant research data on the trace mineral content of Saskatchewan forages. Leanne Thompson, Executive Director of the Saskatchewan Forage Council says, “Producers can use the results of this project as a guide to understand trends in their own soil zone but to ensure a balanced diet for their livestock, feed and water testing on their own pastures is highly recommended”.
TRACE MINERALS IN SASKATCHEWAN PASTURES
The Saskatchewan Forage Council and partners have completed
a project funded by the ADF (Agriculture Development Fund) which sampled tame
and native forage species in Saskatchewan pastures for trace mineral content. Forages were sampled and forage
quality was analyzed in both the spring and fall of 2012 and 2013 from four
soil zones within the province.
only required in less than 100 parts per million (ppm), when deficient, these
minerals can have severe impacts on animal health which can have a significant
economic impact for livestock producers.
have been developed as a resource to share the results of this project and are available by soil zone. To view:
Soil Zone Factsheet click here.
Minerals Gray Soil
Zone Factsheet click here .
Brown Soil Zone Factsheet click here.
Soil Zone Factsheet click here.
Print copies of all Trace Minerals Factsheets are available by contacting the SFC at 306.969.2666 or e-mail
for the final project report coming soon on the website!
Funding for this project was provided by the
Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture and the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing
Forward bi-lateral agreement.
Project Partners: Western Beef Development Centre,
University of Saskatchewan, Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture
Posted July 15, 2014
FORAGE INDUSTRY INNOVATION AWARD PRESENTED TO DR. BRUCE COULMAN
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) is pleased to announce
presentation of the 2014 Forage Industry Innovation Award to Dr Bruce
Coulman at the Council’s Annual Meeting held June 26, 2014 near
Lashburn, SK. This award recognizes exemplary innovation, leadership,
service and stewardship in Saskatchewan’s forage industry.
The Saskatchewan Forage Council extends their sincere
congratulations to Dr Bruce Coulman on receiving the 2014 Forage
Industry Innovation Award. In honour of Bruce, the SFC will make a
contribution in his name to the Alicia Hargrave Memorial Bursary,
College of Agriculture and Bioresources at the University of
To view the full article click here.
Posted June 15, 2014
CICER MILKVETCH ESTABLISHMENT OPTIONS
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) and partners have recently completed the ADOPT (Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies) project, "Cicer Milkvetch Establishment Options."
Many livestock producers are interested in improving hay or pasture stands with the addition of a legume. The use of non-bloating legumes such as cicer milkvetch are desirable for many livestock and forage producers due to pasture management options, productive capability and nutritional quality. Producers are interested in the most effective methods of establishing this sometimes difficult to establish legume. The objective of this project was to demonstrate various establishment strategies for cicer milkvetch as part of a new forage stand and evaluate the relative effectiveness of these strategies.
To read the complete Project Summary, click here.
To view the Cicer Milkvetch Establishment Options ADOPT project Final Report, click here.
To watch the Forage Variety Comparisons: Cicer Milkvetch video that highlighs this project, click here.
Posted January 27, 2014
PERENNIAL FORAGE DEMONSTRATION
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) and partners have recently
completed the ADOPT (Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and
Technologies) project, "Demonstration of Perennial Forage Crops." This project showcased over 40 perennial forage species, including both grass and legumes at four research farms in Saskatchewan in side-by-side demonstration plots in 2012 and 2013.
The volume of information and the wide variety of forages available can make forage selection an overwhelming process. These demonstration sites provided an opportunity for producers to view the relative success of both legume and grass species in their own regions to assist in selection of forages for their own operations.
A video was developed to provide more information on the bromegrass varieties in this demonstration and it can be accessed on YouTube (SFC Bromegrass Video).
To read the complete Project Summary, click here.
To view the Demonstration of Perennial Forage Crops ADOPT project Final Report, click here.
Posted December 14, 2013
INVASIVE PLANT SPECIES MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES
-EXTENSIVE THREE YEAR PROJECT COMPLETED-
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) and industry partners have completed the CAAP (Canadian Agricultural Adaptation Program) project, "Invasive Plant Species Management Strategies: Capacity Building for Saskatchewan's Forage & Livestock Industry."
Invasive plant species are present in Saskatchewan and are often found
established within forage acres. These invasive plant species pose a
very real and significant threat. This extensive three year project provided the resources to
path find and pilot solution for the forage and livestock industry to
deal with this ever-growing threat of invasive plant species. A
proactive approach was taken to develop the capacity and tools to
respond to the issue and pilot practical measures across the wider
industry. Project objectives included increasing Saskatchewan producers’
awareness of invasive plant species and also assessed existing
weed-free forage certification programs and the potential for these to
be adapted for Saskatchewan use.
The project was very successful in meeting its original objectives.
Awareness of the threat of invasive plant species was increased and an
in depth assessment of existing weed-free forage certification programs and
opportunities for a provincial program were fully evaluated. Clearly,
there is much work left to be done but this project fulfilled its role
to initiate the conversation, bring industry partners together on this
critical issue, and identify next steps.
To view the Project Final Report, click here. To view the Strategic Assessment Report, click here. To view the Facilitated Focus Group Report, click here. To view the Project Summary, click here.
The education and awareness component of this project involved the creation of a series of five Beneficial Management Practices (BMPs) factsheets focusing on the prevention and control of invasive plant species
within various sectors of the forage industry including FORAGE SEED, GRAZING, RIPARIAN, HAY, and TRANSPORTATION. It also involved the creation of the SASKATCHEWAN INVASIVE PLANT SPECIES IDENTIFICATION GUIDE. The ID Guide
focuses on the many invasive plant species that are pertinent to SK and
provides plant characteristics and information about each species.
To view or download online versions of the Factsheets, click here.
To view or download an online version of the ID Guide, click here.
Print copies of all the Factsheets and the ID Guides are available by contacting the SFC at 306.969.2666 or
Funding for this project has been
provided by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada through the Canadian
Agricultural Adaptation Program (CAAP). In Saskatchewan, this program is
delivered by the Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan. A project
steering committee participated in the project’s activities, design and
delivery and included representatives from the following
organizations/agencies: Saskatchewan Forage Council, Frenchman-Wood
River Weed Management Area, Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development
Commission, Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, Saskatchewan
Association of Rural Municipalities, and Agriculture and Agri-Food
Canada. Additional support (financial and in-kind) for this project was
provided by Crossing the Medicine Line Network, SaskEnergy, SaskPower,
SaskTel, True North Specialty Products, ConocoPhillips, Dow AgroSciences
and Canada North Environmental Services.
OPTIONS FOR ESTABLISHING FORAGES ON SALINE SOILS
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) and partners have recently completed the ADOPT (Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies) project, "Options for Establishing Forages on Saline Soils."
Saline areas are a significant concern for Saskatchewan producers. The objective of this project was to pathfind different options for establishing forages on these saline areas, including new and existing forage varieties with the potential to germinate and compete with saline-tolerant weeds.
A presentation has been put together by the SFC to show the results of the project and the lessons learned. To view the presentation, click here.
To read the complete Project Summary, click here.
To view the Forages on Saline Soils ADOPT project Final Report, click here.
Posted October 14, 2013
SFC CELEBRATES 25 YEARS OF SERVING THE FORAGE INDUSTRY
The Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) was officially formed May 2, 1988 by a visionary group of forage industry stakeholders. The original board of directors included: Robert McGillivray, S.E. Beacom, Les Bohrson, Rodney Duczek, Don Gayton, Clare Phillips, Ken Stoner, Greg Sommerfeld and Bill Weighill. This group represented people from the forage seed, research, export, processing and livestock sectors - indicating that since its inception in 1988, the SFC has recognized and embraced the diversity of the forage industry.
The SFC was formed as a means to provide the forage industry with a voice. The formation of a provincial council would be a way to pull those working on forage issues together. Also, forages were not adequately represented by other crop commodity groups, thus there was a gap to be filled.
It is important to acknowledge the hard work and vision of all the former board members and employees that have helped make this council a success. Here’s to another 25 years serving the forage industry!
To read the complete article, click here.
Posted July 8, 2013
LIVESTOCK & FORAGE GAZETTE - NOW ELECTRONIC
The Livestock and Forage Gazette has enjoyed a dedicated readership in Saskatchewan and beyond during the last decade. To see a previous newsletter please click here. It is now moving to electronic distribution, so if you would like to receive the January 2012 enewsletter please join the mailing list. The Gazette will continue to provide you with the same informative content that livestock producers have come to know and expect!
To sign up for the electronic Livestock and Forage Gazette, click on the Forage Gazette Sign Up tab in the side menu on the left (in the Main Menu under Contact Us)
Posted December 20, 2011
SASKATCHEWAN'S FORAGE INDUSTRY REPORT RELEASED
The Saskatchewan Forage Council is pleased to announce the release of the much-anticipated report entitled “The Value of Saskatchewan’s Forage Industry – A Multi-Level Analysis”. The first of its kind in the province, the report characterizes this diverse industry and looks at the value of forages to Saskatchewan’s economy, environment and society as a whole. Read more...
Download the complete report: Print Version(4.4MB) or Screen Version(2.2MB)
For more information or to request a print copy of the report, contact the Saskatchewan Forage Council at 306.969.2666 or
Posted April 15, 2010
The Saskatchewan Forage Council Gratefully Acknowledges funding for our 'Facilitating Forage Initiatives in Saskatchewan' project through the Saskatchewan Cattlemen's Association
Cattle Marketing Deductions Fund: