OMAFRA Ag Business Update – Issue 147 – January 2019

OMAFRA Ag Business Update – Issue 147 – January 2019

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ISSUE # 147 – January 2019

This update is designed to provide you with concise, up to date agricultural business information with links to where you can find the details. 

This Issue:

Business Strategy / Business Planning

Online farm business self-assessment tool available to help farmers plan for success!

Growing Your Farm Profits (GYFP): Planning for Business Success Online Farm Business Self-Assessment Tool provides producers with the first step in the business planning process. Producers will come away with a comprehensive assessment of their farm business practices, priorities, key goals and ultimately, an Action Plan as a starting point towards the farm’s business plan.


Beef and Sheep Report 2018 – agri benchmark

This report provides a short overview of the most important developments of the global beef and sheep sectors in 2017 / 2018. It looks at consumption, production, trade and prices globally. The economic analysis comprises price developments and benchmarking results from the agri benchmark data base.

agri benchmark is a global, non-profit network of agricultural economists, advisors, producers and specialists in key sectors of agricultural and horticultural value chains.


Pig Report 2018

This report is a condensed version of the main findings of the 2018 agri benchmark Pig season. It covers some global developments, market developments, hot issues of the global pig sectors and an extract of our farm level analysis.


The Avoidable Crisis of Food Waste

Nearly 60 percent of food produced in Canada – amounting to 35.5 million metric tonnes – is lost and wasted annually. Of that, 32 percent – equalling 11.2 million metric tonnes of lost food – is avoidable and is edible food that could be redirected to support people in our communities.

The total financial value of this potentially rescuable lost and wasted food is a staggering $49.46 billion.

To access the Roadmap (produced by Second Harvest) and full Technical Report (produced by VCMI) click here.

Financial Management

Analyzing and Managing Your Cash Flow Factsheet update now available

This factsheet is designed to help you diagnose a cash-flow shortage and take some steps toward correcting it.

Human Resources

Seeking Expressions of Interest: Farm Management Canada’s Mental Health Study

Farmers are facing risk and uncertainty like never-before, from Mother Nature to changing markets and regulations, much of which is outside of their control. Public trust and social license is now putting more pressure on farmers.

Our 25 years’ experience tells us there is a positive correlation between mental health and farm business management.

With the support of Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, FMC is excited to explore this connection further to gain insight into how better management can support mental health, and the critical path forward. FMC further seek to explore whether demographic differences exist between regions, production sectors, gender and age, and steps they can take to meet these individual needs. 

To find out how you can be involved or to support this study please contact Heather Watson at

Agriculture and Food Education Online Learning System

This site is hosted and maintained by the Business Development Centre, University of Guelph Ridgetown Campus.

The Agriculture and Food Education site provides a variety of free courses and resources that give producers and processors information they need to help their businesses grow.

All of the courses are delivered online and are self-paced courses that can be completed on your own schedule.

The following courses are available for no cost:

  • Producer: Food Safety Foundations
  • Processor: Food Safety Foundations
  • The Basics of Traceability
  • Processor: Recall
  • Processor: Sanitation
  • Processor: Personnel
  • Producer: Water Use
  • Producer: Worker Practices
  • Producer: Maximizing your Traceability Investment
  • Processor: Profiting from Traceability
  • Growing Your Farm Profits


Mental Health for Farmers – First Aid Kit

Owning a farm business can be very stressful. If you are struggling with the impact of these stresses, you are not alone.

The government of Ontario cares about the well-being of farmers and farm families and recognizes they face unique challenges that can lead to mental health issues.

There is help out there if you’re struggling. Reach out to a friend or other emotional support. Together we can end the stigma that surrounds mental health. You matter, and you’re important. We’re all in this together.


Production Management

2019 Field Crop Budgets publication now available online


Risk Management

Ontario Beef Cattle Financial Protection Program

Effective January 1, 2019, Agricorp is delivering the Ontario Beef Cattle Financial Protection Program. For more than 35 years, this program has provided financial protection to beef cattle sellers when a licensed dealer defaults on payment.

The previous delivery agent, Ontario Beef Cattle Financial Protection Program Inc. (Beef Inc.), and key stakeholders in Ontario’s beef sector recommended shifting the delivery of this program to Agricorp because of Agricorp’s industry knowledge, program delivery expertise and quality customer service. Agricorp is well positioned to deliver the Beef Cattle Financial Protection Program because it is similar to the Grain Financial Protection Program, which the organization also delivers. The agency also has experience supporting the beef sector in delivering the Risk Management Program and AgriStability.


10 Ways to Reduce the Risk of Barn Fire

This factsheet contains practical best management practices (BMPs) to assist Ontario farmers in reducing the risk of barn fires.

AgriShield® Comprehensive Risk Management Tool

AgriShield is a comprehensive risk assessment and mitigation platform for Canada’s farmers developed under the leadership of Farm Management Canada (FMC). It is the first platform to offer a 360 degree view to help assess and put a plan in place to manage risks on the farm.

AgriShield will help you:

  • Identify, assess and prioritize your farm risks
  • Create a risk management action plan for you and your farm team
  • Access resources and tools to help you manage risk 

For more information, please click here.

Conferences, Workshops and Seminars

OMAFRA Dateline:

OMAFRA Dateline is an online resource for use by interested individuals and organizations across Ontario. Events may be hosted by OMAFRA or other groups. The events posted on this site are aimed at sharing information of interest to agriculture and regional economic development clients. Please check the calendar regularly for upcoming events, workshops, conferences and meetings.

CAP Workshops & Webinars

A variety of excellent workshops and webinars are offered at no cost by OSCIA as part of Canadian Agricultural Partnership to assist Ontario farm businesses in identifying strengths and weaknesses in a variety of areas that influence the farm’s profitability, productivity and sustainability. The workshops and webinars each have a different focus and different goals.


FCC Events

Make the most of your farm business

Practical tools, new perspectives and breakthrough moments – expand your ag knowledge at a free FCC learning event. We bring the best minds in agriculture to communities across Canada to inform, inspire and help you get the most from your business.


Building Your Health & Safety Program – For Agricultural Businesses

Small farming operations can find it challenging to understand occupational health and safety responsibilities especially when a worker is injured. The WSIB can help. They invite you to a free health and safety training program which will explain your occupational health and safety and WSIB requirements.

Through this voluntary health and safety program, your company will receive a one-time 5% rebate on your previous year’s WSIB premiums after you meet all of the following requirements:

  • Attend all 3 in-class training sessions (each class is 4 hours each)
  • Complete a self-evaluation,
  • Complete a health and safety action plan,
  • Complete an inspection procedure and return to work procedure

For more information or to register contact:

Program Administrator, WSIB, Workplace Health and Safety Services Division

Phone: 1-800-387-0750, ext. 5533 or 416-344-5533; or Fax: 416-344-3493 or Email:

Locations and dates:

Goodwill Career Centre

300Lacroix St., Unit 7, Chatham, On

Jan. 29 , Feb. 5 and Feb.12 9 am – 1 pm

The Municipality of South Huron

322 Main St,S, Verity room, Exeter, ON

Feb. 6, Feb. 13 and Feb. 20 9:30 am -1:30 pm

Travelodge Simcoe

385 Queensway West, Simcoe, ON

Feb. 19, Feb. 27 and Mar. 6 9 am – 1 pm

Ministry of Agriculture Food & Rural Affairs

401 Lakeview Dr., Woodstock, ON

Mar. 5, Mar. 12 and Mar. 19 9 am – 1 pm

Grain Marketing Webinar: Intro to Futures

February 6, 2019 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Organizer Grain Farmers of Ontario

Phone:1 (800) 265-0550

Price Risk Management using Futures & Options

In today’s increasingly competitive marketplace, downstream flexibility can be achieved in part by predicting and managing upstream risk. This comprehensive, three-day course focuses on practical application and is essential for any farmer or agri-business leader whose production (outputs) or raw materials (inputs) are commodity based.

AME is now offering two different delivery options to take the Introduction to Price Risk Management Program. A three day in person course February 12-14, 2019, in Guelph, ON or a seven session on-line course over a three week period. Next start date for the on-line course March 18, 2019.


Small Ruminant Lending & Advisor Seminar

Presented by: the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA)

This one day session will provide lenders and business advisors timely information about the sheep and goat sectors in Ontario, as well as the opportunities & challenges they face.

Date: Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Location: Guelph, ON & via select WebEx locations

Registration details and the agenda will be released by late November, 2018. To be notified when more information is available please email Nancy Tasillo

Managing Investment Costs of Machinery – online course

The major objective is to give farmers the tools needed to construct and implement the optimum machinery management strategy for their farms, based on sound management decisions. A machinery management strategy includes how much equipment to have, how to choose the most favorable equipment option, whether it is owned and financed or leased, rented, and for how long it is held.

This program is planned as an interactive online workshop. Participants will receive an investment spreadsheet to document informed investment decisions.

Online Courses begin: February 19, 2019 or March 11, 2019


International Farm Management Association Congress 

Growing Agriculture @ 41 Degrees South – excellence in farm management through innovation, diversification and integration with tourism. 

The 22nd International Farm Management Association Congress will be held in Tasmania, Australia from March 3 to 8, 2019.


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