Farmers in Alberta use a wide range of best management practices (BMPs) to complete each growing season successfully. Starting with preparations prior to seeding and working through harvest time, farmers have many ways to get from A to B as efficiently as possible.
Agriculture is vital to every human on Earth. It is the industry that produces the food we eat every day, providing nourishment to the planet’s population of more than seven billion people—a figure that increases by 225,000 people each day. It should come as no surprise, then, that in every corner of the globe there are farmers.
In today’s supermarkets, the contents of the fresh produce section can transport you—and your palate—around the world and through the seasons. For Canadians in particular, it can be easy to take for granted the fact that we have access to warm-weather fare like tomatoes on the vine, avocados and blueberries even when it’s -25°C outside and the ground is covered by two feet of snow. However, it wasn’t always this way.e, avocados and blueberries even when it’s -25°C outside and the ground is covered by two feet of snow. However, it wasn’t always this way.
If you ask a random person in a grocery store whether he’s thought about the farmer who grew the ingredients for the loaf of bread in his hands, you’ll likely get a “no.” Ask that same consumer what he thinks of gluten, GMOs or Roundup, and you might end up having a conversation about all that’s wrong with food production these days.
Growing a successful crop is the perennial goal of a farmer. However, that’s just one small step in the bigger puzzle of turning a profit. Freight costs—namely trucking and rail—are a fact of life for farmers, the same way farmers must always contend with the weather. Farmers deliver grain to a rural drop-off, then that grain is moved by rail to a port, where it is loaded onto a vessel. Where it goes from there will require a passport.
Food and farming go hand in hand, but in the urbanized 21st century it can be difficult for kids—and even grown-ups—to make the connection. Journey 2050, a farm simulator video game developed by a group of agriculture organizations, helps students in junior and senior high understand the intricacies of producing enough food to sustain a world population that experts predict will swell to nine billion people by 2050.
If you are a Calgarian, or have recently lived in the city, people may wonder if you were present when it flooded in 2013. The conversations nowadays almost always lead into the state of the economy and the price of oil. Ironically, while Calgary’s troubling times seem to have put the city on the radar, it’s also these challenges that unite Calgarians and strengthen their community connections.