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Canadian Thanksgiving weekend

Agriculture.com Staff 10/10/2006 @ 10:05am

I have been farming in Western Canada for more than 25 years, and the joke around our farm is that we always celebrate the American Thanksgiving holiday because who is done harvesting the first weekend in October?

Well, this year, we finally finished on Friday night at 10:30 with a beautiful full moon in the background.

Heck, I even got to attend the Rolling Stones Concert on Sunday in Regina. Now doesn't that give a farmer Satisfaction when he can't get none?

In our area now, harvest is close to 99% done, but the long-range forecast looks grim for the next two weeks, with dropping temperatures and snow showers. In Canada, once the ground starts cooling off, the chance for better weather gets tougher and tougher to find, until one day you wake up and it's winter!

The Canadian harvest is ending and I feel Stats-Can numbers are out a little. Yes, Manitoba was back with a great crop, but in Saskatchewan and Alberta, I feel HRS wheat yields are lower than normal. No big piles like last year. All along, I was saying that we had a poor pea crop but "Oh no," the experts said I was wrong now. After the fall run is done and the grain companies are holding a lot of the crop, ye, there is a small crop. The price is know $1.50 higher than that right off combine.

What I try to get across is that poor information by Canadian Experts (Stats-Can, Saskatchewan Ag and Food, etc.) hurts farmers. Also, farmers hurt themselves. To some in western Canada, a 30-bushel crop is excellent and they tell everyone they had a awesome crop, including Stats-Canada and Sask Ag and Food. To most, 30 is a low end of where they need to be and 60 is an excellent crop.

Theses inaccuracies are hurting only the farmer and know one else and until we all get on the same page, nothing will change.

The biodiesel and ethanol dealings will be our new ventures in Canada and with proper incentives, we can turn our grain into petroleum. But, on this, I am keeping my fingers crossed since the last 10 years of government help have proven fruitless.

Anyway, it's raining this morning and the price of HRS wheat is inching upwards along with some of our other crop prices, so yes it is a Happy Thanksgiving!

I have been farming in Western Canada for more than 25 years, and the joke around our farm is that we always celebrate the American Thanksgiving holiday because who is done harvesting the first weekend in October?

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