MFGA eBulletin - Jan 6 2016

Hay Situation and Price Update - December
Each month John McGregor, MFGA Hay Expert, surveys MAFRD forage staff and some of the forage producers and industry personnel to get their impression of hay prices and the hay situation. Since the last release we have seen some very mild conditions across Manitoba which has helped ease the pressure on forage supplies. Read John's full report here.

Cattle Feeding & Cold Weather
Thus far, Manitoba has experienced a relatively mild start to winter and the potential for this to continue is expected due to the El Nino. Despite this, colder weather before spring will likely occur and if not rain, melting snow or wind could significantly increase the coldness of the environment. Cattle will need some special considerations regarding feed and management if they are to produce a healthy calf this spring. Read on.
By-product Feeds for Sheep
For Manitoba the types of by-products that may be available would be Seed Screenings, Distillers Grain (DG) and to a much lesser extent vegetable waste. For both Screening and DG's there are two main issues: particle size and nutritional value. Read the full article.

Dairy Farmers Shuffle MFGA Board Members

The Dairy Farmers of Manitoba (DFM) have shuffled MFGA board members for 2016. Longtime MFGA board member Lawrence Knockaert of DFM steps into a new DFM portfolio, and we welcome Ray Mangin who will be representing the DFM chair on our MFGA Board.
Winnipeg named 2016 CFGA Conference site
MARK YOUR CALENDAR: The next conference will be held in Winnipeg Nov 15-17, 2016
The Saskatchewan Forage Council co-hosted the 6th annual 2015 Canadian Forage and Grassland Conference in Saskatoon. The conference held virtual farm tours by producers demonstrating how research and extension influenced decisions and practices on their farms such as under seeding perennial (cocktail) mixtures with annual crops in mixed farming systems and use of multi-species perennial mixtures in intensive rotational grazing operations. There were also updates from Dairy Farmers of Canada, the Alberta Beef Producers and the Canadian Cattlemen's Association Sustainable Beef Roundtable. Doug Wray, CFGA chairman, provided comments about the importance of a strong forage sector and cautious optimism about renewed interest and funding for forage crop research and extension across Canada. A special congratulations to Dr. Bruce Coulman, U of S,  for receiving the CFGA Leadership Award. Conference Proceedings posted here. 
MARK YOUR CALENDAR: The next conference will be held in Winnipeg Nov 15-17, 2016.
The value of Certified Maintenance Inspections
During the off-season, consider a Certified Maintenance Inspection to prevent downtime, protect your equipment investment, and improve resale value. Your New Holland dealer's technicians can inspect your equipment and provide recommendations on how to maintain your machine for peak performance. CMIs are well-documented and provide valuable service records for the equipment owner that in turn can increase the equipment's resale value.
For more information, contact your local New Holland rep or by visiting their website.
MFGA "on the move"... 
- Manitoba Beef and Forage Initiative's Advisory Committee and Communications Committee
- International Institute for Sustainable Development Meeting
- Agriculture Minister and Staff's Annual Holiday Reception
... and "in the news"...
NDP Plan a Bold, Logical Partnership with Farmer - Dec 12 Winnipeg Free Press
- Manitoba Farmers Get Climate Change  - Dec 14 Winnipeg Free Press
Industry News & Articles
CSAAC Annual $500 Post-Secondary Student Grant
For post-secondary studies in the field of agriculture and/or plant sciences at a recognized Canadian institution, this grant is is provided as an incentive to encourage students to pursue degrees related to agriculture. Application deadline is May 15th for the following fall term.

Ag Risk Management Projector - a new tool from MNP
This tool allows producers to compare different types of risk management programs, including AgriInsurance, AgriStability and the private Global Ag Risk Solutions. It can also be used to determine whether a producer should stay in AgriStability or not, or as a policy tool to assess whether programs are meeting their objectives. Free to MNP clients, but non-clients may access it on a fee-for-service basis. For details, contact Grant Griffith, 1-877-500-0795.

Putting Grazing Theory into Practice
Clayton Robins suggests a grazing system of high-energy forage can hone the best gains while regenerating pastures. Read the full Manitoba Co-operator article.

January 2016 Agri-Digest Online
An outlook on what to expect this year - in this case, amalgamations of agrichemical and seed companies. What is driving the change and what does the long-term picture look like? Read on.

Think safety with new PTO VIDEO 
This newly released video explains the shields required for power take-offs (PTOs), and outlines safe work procedures for operating a PTO to prevent entanglements. Watch the video here.

International Year of the Pulses kicks off 
The Untied Nations has declared 2016 as the International Year of the Pulses (IYOP), and in doing so is recognizing the role pulses can play in meeting future food requirements. IYOP is important to Canada because it will give consumers a better understanding of pulses - increased consumption is linked to improved nutrition and health outcomes. Increased production of pulses in Canada means a reduction in on-farm energy use, reduced greenhouse gas emissions and improved soil health. 

Help out with a project on producer stress 
The University of Guelph is conducting a research project on agricultural producer stress and resilience in Canada. Through an anonymous survey, it will investigate the relationship between stress and resilience, and gather important information about the mental wellness of agricultural producers in Canada. Participate in the survey.

ATS Bulletin - Agri-food trade service  
An industry publication from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Eng VersionFr Version.

Upcoming Industry Events
Horse Production and Management Course offered by University of Manitoba
Begins January 11 (10 Mondays)
This series of lectures is offered by the Department of Animal Science and deals with the principles of horse production and management, including anatomy and physiology, genetics, selection and breeding, reproductive management, nutrition, stable and pasture management, health and welfare, and equine behaviour. Guest speakers and a farm tour are included. More information here.

Beef & Forage Week Seminars in various locations across Manitoba (see above ad)
January 11-15
An annual event hosted by Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development and the Manitoba Forage & Grassland Association. Download the Agendas:

Cover Crops for Grazing Workshop in Mandon, ND
Tuesday, January 19
Morton County Soil Conservation District workshop featuring Clayton Robbins, Kenny Miller, Jerry Doan, Justin Zahradka, Dr. Kendall Swanson. Download the flyer.

Manitoba Ag Days in Brandon, MB
January 19-21
The Manitoba Ag Days show is an exposition of agricultural production expertise, technology, and equipment that attracts exhibitors and visitors from across Canada and North Central United States. More information here.

North Dakota Grazing Coalition's Winter Workshop
Wednesday, January 20
This year's workshop "The Soil-Grass-Animal-Human Health Connection" will feature Dr. Richard Teague from Texas as the keynote speaker amongst other conservationists, graziers, marketers, and health professionals. Register by Jan 14. For more information: visit their website or download the flyer.

Manitoba Young Farmers Conference in Winnipeg, MB
January 26-27
Informative sessions include owning versus renting, and success in succession planning - and the event qualifies young farmers for nine management training credits through the Bridging Generations Initiative. Registration is free.

KAP Annual Meeting plus 2 events in Winnipeg, MB
January 27-28
KAP's action-packed annual meeting will take place this year on January 27 & 28 at the Delta Winnipeg. On Jan 26, a human resources workshop will be held with free admission for delegates; non-delegates can also attend for a nominal fee. More info and to register.

Benchland Annual Meeting, Beef & Forage Day
Thursday, January 28
This one-day meeting is packed with the latest news on research and production for beef and forage management aimed to help Manitoba beef producers best manage their cattle operations. Learn from innovative leading experts - download the poster.

Austin Annual Beef and Forage Production Day
Friday, January 29
This annual event, organized by the Portage la Prairie Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development (MAFRD) office, provides an information day for local beef producers to learn more about livestock and forage production. Download the poster.

Western Canadian Holistic Management Conference in Russell, MB
February 14-16
This conference includes Producer Panels, Booth Displays, a wine and cheese reception, meals and workshops. Topics include Inspiring Purpose with Passion in Your Life; Regenerating Landscapes for a Sustainable Future, Farming in Natures Image; Producing Food as if it Mattered; Your Life Assignment. Registration, accommodations and full agenda found here.

11th Prairie Conservation and Endangered Species Conference in Saskatoon, SK
February 16-18
Early Bird Registration is . The program explores themes including: status, trends, threats, and issues; protection and conservation; restoration and recovery; and connecting and motivating people to wonder, care, and act. View full details here.