E-Letter - December 13, 2019

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Welcome to this weeks E-Letter
The E-Letter is published bi-weekly.

If anyone has feedback or items that they would like to see in the E- Letter, please contact Suzanne MacNeill: slmacneil@gov.pe.ca.


TABLE OF CONTENTS (click on the topic below to view the information)


Congratulations to Justin and Laura Rogers - 2019 Canaada's Outstanding Young Farmers
Justin and Laura Rogers of Brae, P.E.I., have been named Canada's Outstanding Young Farmers for 2019. The couple run Picturesque Farms, which has been in the Rogers family for six generations.

2019 in review – Part 1: A test of industry resilience
Trade tensions, disruptive weather, livestock disease, and shifting food preferences were economic drivers that impacted profitability across agri-food supply chains in 2019. Here’s a breakdown of the most relevant trends in the first six months of 2019, with an eye on the emerging issues to watch for 2020.

NFU paper proposes solutions to climate and farm crises
Compiled by Darrin Qualman in collaboration with the NFU, the 102-page document entitled 'Tackling the Farm Crisis and the Climate Crisis: A Transformative Strategy for Canadian Farmers and Food Systems' sets out a number of short- and long-term proposals for reducing emissions while also improving farm profitability.

PEI Agriculture Sector Awards - Nomincation deadline: December 31,2019
The PEI Agriculture Sector Council is pleased to announce that nominations are now being accepted for the following 2018 awards:

  • 2019 PEI Department of Agriculture and Land Minister’s Dedication to Agriculture Award.
    This award recognizes an employee that through long serving dedication, devotion, involvement, and thoughtfulness has contributed to the success and long term profitability of your agriculture enterprise.
  • 2019 PEI Agriculture Employee of the Year Award sponsored by Kool Breeze Farms
    The ideal candidate for this award is an agriculture employee that makes an invaluable contribution to any farm operation. The candidate will have demonstrated a strong work ethic and shown dedication and commitment to the agriculture industry.
  • 2019 PEI Agriculture Employer of the Year Award sponsored by T&K Fire and Safety Ltd.
    The ideal candidate for this award is an agricultural employer that goes above and beyond to ensure that their employees have a positive work experience. The candidate will have demonstrated a tremendous level of support and dedication to employees working on their farm operation.

Please nominate a worthy candidate for these awards today. The deadline for nominations is December 31, 2019. The Awards will be presented at the PEI Federation of Agriculture’s Annual Meeting Dinner on January 31, 2020. For further information or nomination forms, please contact the PEI Agriculture Sector Council at (902) 892-1091 or at info@peiagsc.ca


Nominations for Gilbert R. Clements Award for Environmental Farm Planning - Deadline January 10, 2020
The PEI Department of Agriculture & Forestry is once again partnering with the PEI Enhanced Environmental Farm Plan Program to recognize producers or commodity groups committed to practicing and raising awareness of environmental farm planning and implementation. This award was established to recognize excellence in sustainable agriculture based on recommendation from the Round Table on Land Use and Stewardship. It is named in recognition of the Honorable Gilbert R. Clements’s commitment to the environment.
Each year this award is given to an enterprise that is environmentally and socially responsible in the production and/or marketing of agricultural products from a sustainable system. Island agricultural producers and commodity groups are eligible for nomination. Nominations should detail the nominee’s overall approach to environmental stewardship, community involvement and role in increasing public awareness about sustainable agricultural practices. Contact JoAnn Pineau at PEIFA 902-368-7289

PEI Farm Tech Apprenticeship Program - Next Class starts January 2020
Island farm employees now have the opportunity to enhance their skills and obtain Blue Seal certification through the PEI Farm Technician Apprenticeship Program. This program provides farm employees a great opportunity to gain important skills and gain trade experience to use in the Agriculture industry they are working in. The program is subsidized 100% (if EI eligible) by Skills PEI through the Labour Market Development Fund.

New PEI Soil Health Testing Package free for a limited time
The PEI Analytical Laboratories is now accepting samples for the new PEI Soil Health Testing Package. This test includes a variety of soil health tests that focus not only on the nutrient content of the soil, but other physical and biological soil characteristics. The PEI Soil Health Test Package is a comprehensive add-on to the current PEIAL S3 nutrient analysis package, and includes the following additional soil health tests: soil texture, wet aggregate stability, soil respiration, active carbon, and biological nitrogen availability.

Follow us on Twitter @AgInfoPEI
The PEI Department of Agriculture and Fisheries's Agriculture Information Twitter feeds will be your source for agriculture events and workshops on PEI. Tweet us today!

PEI Market Reports

AgWeather Atlantic Website

Food Matters blog Ian Petrie writes about agriculture on PEI.

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Commodity events are listed under their respective commodities.

Soil Health Workshops - January 2020
These workshops will provide an opportunity for producers, producer groups, agronomists and landowners to come learn about the new PEI Soil Health Test, including how to take and submit a sample, and what to expect for a report. Also, the workshops will provide a great opportunity for attendees to ask questions about the tests, their reports, management practices, or any other questions related to soil health they may have. Hosted by the Sustainable Agriculture Section, PEI Department of Agriculture and Land.

  • January 14 - 7-9 p.m., AIC Building, Kensington
  • January 21 - 1-3 p.m. , AAFC Research Station, Charlottetown
  • January 23 - 6-8 p.m., Cavendish Farms Wellness Centre, Montague
  • January 27 - 1-3 p.m., AccessPEI O'Leary Office, O'Leary

For any questions, or to confirm attendance contact: Bradford Rooney 314-0791 or Kyra Stiles 316-1600


NEW Calendar of Events
We have a new Calendar of Events. If you would like to have your agriculture industry events entered into the calendar, please contact Suzanne MacNeill at slmacneil@gov.pe.ca


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Interested in working in agriculture? Are you looking to hire new employees?
To post your employment opportunity or for an up to date list of agricultural jobs in PEI, visit PEI Agriculture Sector Council job registry. Check back regularly as new positions are being posted frequently this time of year.



Option 1 - Continuing Education Credits
The Department of Agriculture and Land will be offering the two different training days A & B for your Continuing Education Credits. You are required to attend one Day A and one Day B over the five-year re-certification period. Only one day per calendar year will be credited. Day A - Topics covered: General Information, Pesticide Regulations, Pesticides Effect on the Land, Aquatic Impact of Pesticides, Environmental Safety, and Application Technology.
Day B - Topics covered: Emergency Response, First Aid, Pesticide Monitoring & Enforcement, Labeling, Professionalism, Traceability, Integrated Pest Management, and Human Health & Safety.
Your current Pesticide Applicator Certificate will be valid until the expiry date. All renewed Class A certificates, in the CEC program, have an expiry date of March 31. The fee is $75 (HST included) for the 5-year certificate.
If you have taken the Day A & Day B as required to renew your certificate, you will be mailed a renewal form. If you did not take both the Day A & Day B before your expiry date, you will be required to complete the written exam to obtain a new certificate.
Registration begins at 8:15 AM. Information sessions are from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Lunch and refreshments will be provided, and there is a $25 registration fee to offset this cost.
To register for one of these training days please call (902) 368-4154 or (902) 368-4880.

2019/2020 Training Schedule for CEC's
DAY A January 7, 2020 Access PEI O'Leary
  January 14 Loyalist Inn, Summerside
  February 4 Rodd Royalty, TCH Charlottetown
  February 11 Lane's Riverhouse Inn, Montague
  March 10 Rodd Royalty, TCH Charlottetown
DAY B January 16, 2020 Access PEI, O'Leary
  January 23 Loyalist Inn, Summerside
  February 6 Lane's Riverhouse Inn, Montague
  February 13 Rodd Royalty, TCH Charlottetown
  March 17 Rodd Royalty, TCH Charlottetown

OPTION 2 - One day training course with exam

Attend the one day training course and write the exam, which is delivered by the PEI Department of Agriculture and Land. This course is designed to prepare you for the exam by reviewing the Agricultural Training Manual

2020 Schedule for one-day Course plus Exam
January 22 Rodd Royalty, TCH Charlottetown
February 12 Mill River Resort, O'Leary
March 11 Loyalist Inn, Summerside
March 18 Rodd Royalty, TCH Charlottetown

OPTION 3 - Write the exam:

  • Write the two hour exam.
  • Make an appointment with the Department of Environment, Water and Climate Change by contacting Debbie MacRae at (902) 368-5024 or Thane Clarke at (902) 368-5599

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How to build a farm peer advisory group
Terry Betker has worked with farmers to establish peer groups for more than a decade. Traditionally, farmers engage with their peers to share management ideas in informal settings — everywhere from industry meetings to the local coffee shop — but formal peer groups are not common in Canadian agriculture, says Betker, president of Winnipeg- based Backswath Management.

Mind Your Farm Business, Ep 46: Navigating multi-generational farm management
Working with family can be the most rewarding part of the farm business, but it also has the potential to be one of the most challenging aspects, full of emotion, relationship evolution, and conflict.


  • December 17 - Information Session: National Farm Leadership Program Q&A - Kelly Dobson

Market Prices

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Meat plant closure in Ont. could affect West
The move leaves Ontario cattle producers scrambling to find processing space for fat cattle. Export options to the United States are limited and sending the cattle to federal slaughter plants in the West involves expensive transportation bills.

Cattle producers get longer phase-in on new transport regs
New federal livestock transport regulations, due to come into force in February, will now roll out on a longer timeline for the beef and dairy cattle sectors.

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More than four million acres unharvested
Many farmers on the Prairies may get a late start to seeding next spring given the unfavourable harvest conditions this fall. Crop specialists predict late starts will largely affect producers in Saskatchewan and Alberta, although some farmers in Manitoba may also seed later than normal.

Soybean School: Managing variable fertility for higher yields
Are we feeding our soybeans enough? There are plenty of opinions but no definitive answers, says Veritas Farm Management manager Aaron Breimer. The challenge is determining which nutrients are limiting yield, something that can vary from field to field and even across individual fields.

2020 Corn Guide - now available on-line.

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Dairy Direct Payment Program Deadline - December 13, 2019
ATTENTION Dairy Producers - remember to register for the Federal Dairy Direct Payment program by December 13, 2019 to receive your funding.

Dairy School: Focusing on calf health reduces mortality
Dairy calves experience many challenges in early life, and producers need to be diligent in the hours and days after birth to ensure calf health and reduce mortality. Overall, research shows that eight percent of calves die within 48 hours of birth — this includes those born dead or those that die within the first two days, notes University of Guelph veterinarian David Renaud. Another six percent of calves die in the pre-weaning period (the first 60 days).

Atlantic Dairy Events Calendar

Dairy Quota Exchange

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Agri-Food Growth Program
The Prince Edward Island Department of Agriculture and Fisheries has established the Agri-Food Growth Program to build and enhance local markets to increase the awareness, sale and consumption of Prince Edward Island produced agri-food products.

Agri-Food Promotion Program
The Prince Edward Island Department of Agriculture and Fisheries has established the Agri-Food Promotion Program to increase the awareness, demand, and consumption for fresh, high- quality Prince Edward Island agricultural products.

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Find Island Christmas trees and Wreaths

PEI Woodlot Owner's Association website
PEIWOA is an inclusive group of woodlot owners that encourages Islanders to create a more sustainable forest ecosystem and forest resource on Prince Edward Island

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Canadian honey production down 15.4 per cent on the year
Cool and wet summer conditions caused Canadian honey production to drop to its lowest level in seven years in 2019, according to a report from Statistics Canada.


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High tunnel, single stem container-grown raspberry trialed in Virginia
National berry sales are on the upswing in recent years due to growing consumer appreciation for the many health benefits that come from eating these succulent fruits. In fact, with U.S. sales totaling $5.8 billion annually, berries are the leading produce category purchased by consumers. And that means Virginia farmers—even those with limited acreage—have an opportunity to tap into this market to gain revenue by helping to meet the growing demand for berries.

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Comparing mechanical weed control options
Considering adding a mechanical option to your herbicide rotations? Try these


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Potatoes are Value Buy, Even When Prices Climb
Potato prices may be higher this year than last because of tighter supplies, but the product remains a good value, and its versatility certainly hasn’t changed, marketers say.

Hashing Out the Potato Harvest
North America's top potato-producing regions were unseasonably cold and wet during the 2019 growing season, creating uncertainty about the coming year's potato supply. Idaho, North Dakota and Minnesota, as well as the Canadian provinces of Alberta and Manitoba, experienced enough adverse weather from September to November to significantly affect this year's potato harvest.

Statistics Canada's estimate of Canadian yields

2019 Seed Potato Certification List and Grower Directory available on- line

Terminal Market Potato Prices
These price data are compiled by USDA AMS Market News Service.

FOB Potato Prices
These price data are compiled by USDA AMS Market News Service.

Reports on Potato Supplies, Movement,Stocks, and Usage
This data are compiled by North American Potato Market News.

US National Potato & Onion Report


Sheep farmers see increased demand from ethnic market in Saskatchewan
A family of Saskatchewan sheep farmers say a boom in immigration over the last decade has positively impacted business.

PEI Sheep Breeders Website


Gene-editing viral DNA creates successful swine fever vaccine in research herd
New research yields a vaccine capable of inducing protection against the ASFv Georgia isolate and inducing sterile immunity against the current ASFv strain responsible for recent outbreaks.


Take basics steps toward a successful market
What distinguishes a successful farm market from a mediocre one? Some simple management practices can be the difference between a profitable market and a marginal one. The following “seven steps to success” were observed by Robert L. Bull from the University of Delaware Ag Extension in his publication “The Modern Farm Roadside Market” some 60 years ago and they still hold true today...

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Field monitoring systems to cast wider Canadian net
Farmers will soon get a new entry point in the Internet of Things (IoT) as a new company brings field monitoring tools and services to the Canadian market.


We welcome your feedback. Suggestions, questions, or comments can be made to the Agriculture Information Desk at by e- mail to slmacneil@gov.pe.ca

Next E-Letter:   January 10, 2020

Date de publication : 
le 13 Décembre 2019
Agriculture et Terres

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