Soybean Harvest Behind Schedule

Brown soybeans in the field

Usually by mid-September, farmers across Ontario will have already begun harvesting the soybean crop; however, this year’s soybean harvest is at least two weeks behind in most parts of Ontario, and as much as a month behind in others.

There are a few reasons why this year’s crop is so far behind schedule, but like a lot of farming concerns, they’re all weather-related. Because of the long winter and deep frost, spring planting couldn’t begin until June in most parts of the province—about a month’s delay. In addition to the late start, crops haven’t seen as much warmth as they typically need, since it has been a very cool summer (and in some places, very wet). Like all crops, soybeans need sun, warmth, and time to develop.

Soybeans are typically planted in mid-May, when the soil temperature is at around 14-16°C, and there is little chance of frost after the seedling emerges from the soil. Soybeans usually take 95-105 days to grow from seed to maturity: as a single soybean plant matures it will produce as many as 80 fuzzy pods full of 2-4 beans each. The plant is ready to be harvested when it dries and turns completely brown.

Soybean farmers will be looking for another few weeks of warm weather this fall. Farmers have been growing soybeans in Ontario since 1942, and since then it has become the province’s largest field crop in terms of dollar value to producers.

You can learn more about growing soybeans in Ontario and soybean products at Grain Farmers of Ontario or by visiting the Growing Connections trailer, which is at the International Plowing Match in Simcoe County this week.

Visit us at the International Plowing Match in Simcoe County

Visitors in the Growing Connections trailer on Canada Day

Grain Farmers of Ontario will be bringing our 53’ trailer exhibit, Growing Connections, to Simcoe County for this week’s International Plowing Match & Rural Expo.

Just south of Barrie, this year’s IPM is taking over Ivy, Ontario. Today’s Opening Parade will feature the Ontario Provincial Police Golden Helmets precision motorcycle team and begins at 10:30am. The festivities officially begin at noon, as Canadian Olympic Gold Medalist Jennifer Jones, one of Canada’s most accomplished and recognizable curlers, leads the Opening Ceremonies on the Main Stage.

What began as a provincial plowing competition over 100 years ago has grown into one Canada’s largest outdoor exhibitions, and more than 100,000 visitors are expected to attend. The IPM runs until Friday, and it features competitions in horse and mule plowing and tractor plowing of all skill levels. Attendees will also be treated to concerts, tractor square dancing, food and fair activities, and the annual Queen of the Furrow competition.

Learn about the Good in Every Grain when you visit Grain Farmers of Ontario at the IPM this week.

Connect with us on Canada Day!

The Growing Connections trailer on Canada Day

Grain Farmers of Ontario’s 53′ trailer exhibit, Growing Connections, will be in Ottawa for Canada Day.

Visit us in Major’s Hill Park to explore our crop stage, watch videos in our theatre room, try your hand at one of our video games and interact with our touchscreen map, and learn how to make homemade play dough in our kitchen stage! Grain Farmers of Ontario staff and delegates will be present to answer questions and help you celebrate our nation’s birthday!

If you live in Ottawa or are planning on being there for Canada Day, visit Grain Farmers of Ontario and all of the other free events- it’s sure to be a fun, family-friendly day!

Grain Discovery Zone Update

Grain Discovery Zone at the Norwood Fair in summer 2017

June continues to be a busy month for the Grain Discovery Zone. This past weekend was spent at one of the southernmost regions in the province in Leamington, the tomato capital of the province. Leamington’s 166th annual fair offered a number of diverse activities to keep fairgoers busy throughout the three days including a stop at the Grain Discovery Zone.

Popular activities at the fair included a produce tent where taste testing of locally grown tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers occurred. Visitors tasted the different varieties and voted on their preferred choice and I can say that it was tough to decide! I often had to try the vegetables twice just to be sure!

There was also a demonstration of traditional aboriginal music and dance presented by First Nations people from across the province. The dress was beautiful and incredibly intricate and the drumming was enthralling. Between the dances, insight to the meanings of each beat of the drum and each body movement in the dance were discussed.

Other neat displays included a honey bee info stand, local students’ artwork, antique tractors, steam engine and handmade quilts. Leamington Fair also boasts live harness racing and a demolition derby with a grand stand for spectators.

Looking ahead, the Grain Discovery Zone will be participating in Fords in the Park event at Country Heritage Park in Milton on the 21st and then will be heading to Norwich Township to celebrate Canada Day.

Don’t forget to follow the Grain Discovery Zone throughout the summer and share your experience with us! Tweet @GrainFarmers #Discovery Zone and like us on Facebook www.facebook.com/GrainDiscoveryZone.

Discover the Good In Every Grain

Grain Farmers of Ontario recently unveiled a new campaign to help tell the story of corn, soybeans, and wheat and the 28,000 farmers that grow them. The new campaign, Good In Every Grain aims to connect rural and urban people, with a focus on the good things these crops bring.

Good in Every Grain speaks to the good values farmers represent, the good work they do for the environment and their communities, and the good quality grain crops they grow. Beyond the farm gate, Good in Every Grain is about the good products created with corn, soybeans, and wheat, and the good contribution the grain industry makes to Ontario’s economy.

Corn, soybeans, and wheat combined contribute $9 billion in economic input, employ 40,000 people and cover over five million acres of farm land across Ontario. These grains have roots in our backyard; however, as more complex commodities the various uses of commercial grains are often unknown. The Good in Every Grain campaign is here to tell the story of these vital grains and the 28,000 Ontario farmers who grow them.

Visit http://www.www.goodineverygrain.ca to purchase merchandise, discover school and media resources, and ask grain-related questions. Follow @GoodinGrain and #ONGrain on Twitter and like Good in Every Grain on Facebook for great information on corn, soybeans, and wheat.

Good in Every Grain builds on the popular Farmers Feed Cities campaign, replacing it with a focus more in line with its founding organization, Grain Farmers of Ontario.