MFGA eBulletin - May 10 2016
Reducing Ash in Hay & Forage
There will always be some soil contamination of grass and legume hay or silage. However appropriate harvesting and storage management can reduce the ash content of the hay or silage. Anyone with 10% or less ash has done a good job of minimizing ash content of hay or silage. Read more on how to reduce ash (soil/dirt) in your hay.
The Concerns of Early Grazing
Even though winter feed stores may still be adequate the urge to get cows to grass is escalating. Turning cows out on immature forages too early can have consequences, with the biggest challenge being to avoid permanent damage by overgrazing. If forages are overgrazed early, permanent damage of the stand is likely. Grass, whether native or domestic, needs time to get established in the spring before grazing begins. As a guideline, for every week you graze a pasture too early in the spring, you lose three weeks in the fall. Read more...
How Legume & Grass Systems Actually Work
When it comes to adding nitrogen to mixed stands of legumes and grasses there are two schools of thought. The first is this that legumes provide all the nitrogen that the accompanying plants need, so additional nitrogen fertilizer is not needed. The second is that to produce top yields, nitrogen must be added to mixed stands, with the amount of nitrogen decreasing with more legumes in the stand. How nitrogen from legumes gets transferred to neighboring plants may not be fully understood but the system does work and has for thousands of years in agriculture all over the world. Better understand the process and manage it to your advantage.
CFGA Conference held at Fairmont in Winnipeg, November 15-17
Mark your calendars for the 7th Annual CFGA Conference! The overall theme is Grass and Green in 2016 to recognize the important role of Canadian forage and grassland managers in providing significant environmental and economic benefits to Canadians from coast to coast. Key topics include: Economics of forage production; Environmental benefits of grass on the landscape; Export industry development; The role of cover crops in annual production systems; Soil nutrient management and conservation. 

A Good Bale Begins with a Good Windrow
The first step to building a good bale begins with building a good windrow, and this starts with a good rake. Choosing a quality, durable rake for your operation will help to insure high quality forage by allowing for more even drying and less dirt in your bales. Rotary rakes provide clean, precise raking with gentle rotations to allow for better leaf retention. Choose from single or double rotor configurations, and side or center delivery, to create the rotary rake solution that works for your operation. Wheel rakes may be the best choice when speed, capacity, and dependability are of the highest importance. Make sure to choose a manufacturer that provides independent rake wheel flotation and durable tines for reduced ash inclusion in the windrow while minimizing stubble damage. Other options include center kicker wheels to turn the hay as you rake, trailing and heavy-duty rakes, etc. Before you buy your next rake, be sure to do your research on options and work with your equipment dealer to find a solution that is right for your operation. Get details at
Industry Articles/Announcements
- Ducks Unlimited has a new forage program for 2016. There are 3 options: 10, 15 and 20 year agreements. CPS is a partner with Ducks Unlimited and provide an additional $10 per bag if you purchase CPS forage seed. Target area is the pothole regions of Southwest Manitoba. Questions? Contact  Michael Thiele.
Cover crops breaking out of livestock niche - Benefits of cover crops shown to accrue to grain portion of mixed operations, causing some without livestock to consider them. Read the full April 16, 2016 MB Co-operator article.
- Have 15 minutes? Make an impact on the future of beef research - take the survey conducted by the Beef Cattle Research Council.
- MBP announces new general manager - MFGA looks forward to working with Brian Lemon, new MBP General Manager, who has an extensive background in the agriculture industry, having worked with Agriculture and Agri- Food Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and, most recently, with the Canadian Grain Commission as the Director of Industry Services. 
- The Agricultural and Agri-Food Canada's new Youth Green Jobs Initiative supports employers who wish to hire youth to undertake environmentally beneficial activities on their farm; or employers who employ youth in the agriculture sector to undertake environmentally beneficial activities. They will be accepting applications as of April 25th. View the Poster For more info, call: 1-866-452-5558 or Email
- Manitoba Beef Producers (MBP) will again award six $500 bursaries to deserving Manitoba students in 2016. The bursaries are available to MBP members, or their children, who are attending a university, college or other post-secondary institution. Students pursuing trades training are also eligible. Deadline: June 3, 2016.
- Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada April ATS Bulletin - monthly publications available online
- Agri Digest - May issue - monthly publications available online
- 2016 Agriculture Census is here - Eng  and Fr - by law farmers are required to participate. This year there's an option to complete the census online, reducing the time required to fill out the form by 30%. You'll be receiving a letter soon, advising you how to participate electronically.
- One more month to book on-farm safety service - The services of an experienced safety consultant are only available until the end of May - so book your appointment today. Call the KAP office to make arrangements - 204-697-1140.
Industry Events
2016 Crop Diagnostic School Staff Student Day - July 5 in Carman, Manitoba
The day will run 8:30 am to 4:00 pm. Registration is limited and costs $50. Lunch and refreshments provided. School will run, rain or shine, Please dress accordingly. Book Now! For additional info: Program - Anatasia Kubinec at 1-204-750-2717; Registration - Monika Menold at 1-204-745-5663.
3-Day Grazing Club Workshop being planned - July 2016 in southwest Manitoba (tentative)
Tentative date & agenda with Ian:  HOLISTIC MANAGEMENT; SOIL IMPROVEMENT; MOB GRAZING; SOIL FERTILITY AND ANIMAL HEALTH; GENETICS; INFRASTRUCTURE. If you are interested, contact Michael Thiele or 204-365-6334.
Canadian Beef Industry Conference - Aug 9-11 in Calgary, Alberta
Keynote address by Arlene Dickinson, CEO of Venture Communications and former venture capitalist on CBC's Dragon's Den. Register before June 23 for early bird pricing. 
Manitoba Open Farm Day - September 18, 2016 on farms across Manitoba
Mark your calendars for this annual event.
Held at the Hotel Fairmont, the overall theme for the conference is Grass and Green in 2016 to recognize the important role of Canadian forage and grassland managers in providing significant environmental and economic benefits to Canadians from coast to coast. For more information, contact the Conference Coordinator.

MB Beef Producers Logo