Sunday, July 24, 2011

Goodeve Hard Red Spring Wheat

Gerald sent in this picture of our wheat near Kinistino, Saskatchewan,
It is not red (as in the name ) yet ! But when it is mature if the seed is an deep reddish color that will be very good ! A seed has it's full potential when it is born and it has to have good nutrition and water and the right amount of heat and seed depth and little competition from weeds and diseases.... and no frost... to produce a good end result... Sorta like people too isn't it !

This was taken this week !

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Drought Update in East Africa

Foodgrains Bank Responds to East Africa Drought

After two years of failed rains, 10 million people affected by worst drought in 60 years.

Although images of emaciated children have only recently hit the news, Canadian Foodgrains Bank member agencies are already responding to the severe drought affecting parts of Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, and Somalia.

Since May, the Foodgrains Bank, a partnership of 15 churches and church agencies working together to end global hunger, has committed $2.4 million to help over 46,000 people affected by the crisis.

“The Foodgrains Bank has been monitoring the situation over the past months and is already working with people in need,” says Joan Barkman, who directs the Foodgrains Bank International Program.

“We have a strong presence in Ethiopia and Kenya,” she adds, noting that “we are looking for ways to reach even more people.”

According to the World Food Program, 10 million people in the region require food assistance because of the drought, caused by lack of rain over the past two years. The drought is the worst to hit the area in 60 years.

Foodgrains Bank Response

Foodgrains Bank member agencies are responding:

In Ethiopia’s drought-prone Coro district, Canadian Lutheran World Relief is supporting 18,350 people with over 1,900 tonnes of food, including wheat, beans, oil, and famix, a supplementary food product. Cyclical drought in this area, coupled with total failure of rain this year, has dried up water sources and damaged crops. Food will be distributed freely to those in need and through food for work projects that aim to conserve the area’s natural resources.

In Kenya, Christian Reformed World Relief Committee is spearheading a project that is supporting 17,500 people from pastoralist and agro-pastoralist communities with staple crop seeds and food support. Members from the community are also being encouraged to work together on drought mitigation.

Pastoralists hardest hit

According to Sam Vander Ende, Canadian Foodgrains Bank’s field representative in Ethiopia, sparsely populated pastoralist areas are some of the hardest hit.

“After a couple of seasons of failed rains the cattle have nothing to graze on and they die, leaving their owners with nothing” says Vander Ende.

Mennonite Central Committee Canada is supporting a goat restocking project in Kenya. The goats are distributed through community groups and will benefit 2,000 vulnerable households.

Longer-term projects

In addition to these new projects, long-term projects operated by Foodgrains Bank member agencies are also responding to needs for food in the region. For the last five years, Mennonite Central Committee has been supporting communities in Kenya through sand dam projects that capture water from seasonal rainfall. This water, which is normally lost in flash floods, is being used for irrigation and consumption.

Due to the drought, many people who used to work on the sand dams are now spending all their time in search of food. To keep the sand dam projects going, workers are being paid with food. Now two needs are being met: immediate access to food, and longer-term access to water.

Barkman says that these responses may just be the beginning of more projects to help people in the region.

“We are very concerned about the drought, and will continue to monitor the situation and do what we can to help,” she says.

Canadians who want to help people in those countries can give by calling 1-800-665-4229, by donating online, or by sending a cheque to Box 767, Winnipeg, Man. R3C 2L4. Donations should be marked for East Africa Drought.

Emily Cain

Communications Officer

Canadian Foodgrains Bank
400-393 Portage Ave. (Portage Place Mall)
Box 767

Winnipeg, MB R3C 2L4


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

An Update from Kendell on the Melfort Canola !

Canola in Melfort came up great but 6 inches of rain in a week last week has taken its toll. It is starting to bloom and looks like we may have ½ the yield we would of expected due to flooding. 1/3 is gone, 1/3 is damaged and 1/3 is fine. Lots of moisture though perhaps what is left will fill out well.


Monday, July 4, 2011

Update on the crops !

The weather was wet in Manitoba and South Eastern Saskatchewan... It made seeding this years crops difficult for many. Canola is such a small seed (there can be about 400,000 seeds in one bushel... when you are selling canola you can get about $12.00 a bushel... buying it as seed it can cost $8 a pound. 50 pounds in a bushel) All this to say farmers can be very creative in seeding with special equipment when the fields are too wet for traditional methods. Spreading the seed with systems that blow it on top are common... This year people were seeding with airplanes and even helicopters!
Our Kernels of Hope crops went on to land that was more suitable and they are looking good ! A wise man named Wayne (of Minnedosa ) said this winter that it is always hardest to grow a crop when the price per bushel is high ! The prices are great now too !
The Peas at Strathmore, the wheat at Kinistino, the canola around Brandon and Norquay and the Marvins wheat at Brandon are all doing just fine. We will show you pictures as we progress. Hudyes of Norquay and Dormans of Colorado are putting more producers than ever together who will be adding Kernels acres in !
The fields in North Kivu of the Congo are ready for working but some will need tools and seed and fishing supplies to get things in gear, We trust you will help if you can ! We are ready and poised to make a big difference again ! Grow with us !