Agriculture and Climate Change

If you’ve been reading the news lately you might have heard a lot of conversations about climate change and what we all can do to reduce our impact. Driving less, unplugging household devices, eliminating single use plastic are all ways we can help reduce our carbon footprints. A lot of sources saying changing our diet can also help.

Is agriculture or the food we eat to blame for climate change? Will changing our eating habits, and ultimately changing Canadian agriculture help the environment?

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Stress on the farm

I recently read a personal piece in the Financial Post written by a farmer about mental health on the farm. A 2016 University of Guelph study surveyed 1,100 farmers in Canada and found that 45 percent had high stress and 58 percent had varying levels of anxiety.

In June 2018, FCC (Farm Credit Canada ‚Äď a Crown agriculture lending company) said that it had provided emergency funding to 67 families in just two and a half months, eight of which involved suicides In 2017, FCC provided funding to a total of 287 families, with only two involving suicides.

Mental health is about more than the circumstances of where we live, or what we do for a living, and the problem with growing mental health issues in agriculture in multi-faceted.

This year in particular, Ontario grain farmers faced an onslaught of issues that compiled on top of this complex issue: weather, commodity prices, crop issues, and changing world dynamics were all huge factors that affected this year’s grain outcomes.

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Harvest on Hold… (again)

#YourFarmers have been working hard this fall to finish up harvest, but many acres of soybeans and corn are still left standing. Combining wet grains off of wet fields can cause a lot of issues so many farmers will wait until the grains are dryer before combining. This was challenging this fall as we saw many inches of rain with little rain free days to let the grounds and plants dry out. Then, winter came early and left a whooping 10 cm of snow in some already wet fields!

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