Ontario Agriculture

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Yes the Canadian census confirms I am a young farmer and by a long shot.  I have been reading some of the stats to learn that the average age of a farmer in Ontario is up to 54 yrs.  I have almost 2 decades to go through before I get there.  Thinking back on how much I have seen farming change over the years so far, i get the feeling I am in for a shock before I make the "average" age.  Thats all good, its exciting times.  

I as other farmers around here, well if you take twitter as the representative, can only think about rain at the moment.  Mostly because I haven't seen any real accumulation since last month.  Its getting dry, but the crop on the plowed ground are holding out fine, That on been stubble, like all my corn, is showing some stress.  I get the feeling that using anhydrous ammonia has been showing some added benefit over the local fields sidedressed with 28 or 32%, but that could just be my desire to see good things.  

The wheat crop is turning colour and the combine should be rolling in a couple of weeks.  Although starting last December to get my new (very used) combine in order, i still have a few parts to bolt on before its field ready.  And then that R52 is going to be put to the test.  As will my wife who is concerned about keeping up with unloading the wagons.  With only 40 acres to harvest, I am planning on 2 days of 20 acres, so I won't even take time off work to get this done.  And if harvest falls on a weekend, well it won't even be a long days work.  I guess i am getting a bit spoilt, provided everything works and I avoid any major breakdowns.

Lately I have been enjoying some good prices on old crops.  I have been hauling in a few wagon loads of the partial truck load grain from the bottom of the bin.  It makes for a nice surprise to find an extra 100 bushels of wheat when the price is on an upswing.  Next week I get to move a couple wagons of soy, which I best get done before wheat harvest starts, I need the bin.

Our meat chickens have grown to the point of slaughter time, but having lost a few to foxes, its just not worth the cost to transport to the nearest slaughter house for processing.  By the time I pay the fuel and the butcher I would need to charge over $3 a pound to cover the costs and then there is all the corn and wheat and starter feed they ate.  I need to cut my losses, these birds will end up in my own freezer.  

Its unfortunate I need to travel 80km to the nearest butcher.  The local place only does beef and pork, the regulations are too complex and expensive for them to take on fowl.  There are consequences to government regulation, and although i understand the desire to ensure a safe food supply, they also eliminate a good food supply.  I could see a lot more small free range chickens go to market if there were exceptions for small facilities rather than pointless regulation.  I mean seriously, the width of the front door is on the inspection list, and its not a standard width.  I am sure that is what the big industry has lobbied for to knock out the small players, and it worked.

Well I got enough rain to put put a puddle in the driveway while typing this, don't expect it will last long, but should get to enjoy the sweat smell of growing corn in the morning.  

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