The Globe and Mail is starting a special series on wheat farming in Canada, entitled From Bushel to Bread. The idea is to tell the whole story of wheat farming from growing, harvesting, transporting and trading, and use that as a way of assessing the state of modern agriculture. The first installment is this week:
Let’s start with Mr. Schultz who represents a new wave of Canadian farmers. He’s 30 years old, roughly 20 years younger than the average age of farmers in this country. He has a degree in crop science, shares farming tips on Twitter and has a farmyard full of high-tech equipment including a $400,000 seeding machine that plants his entire crop without tilling any soil and is guided by a GPS system that means he can keep seeding long after sundown. He keeps up with global grain markets on his smartphone, makes videos as a hobby and even has a drone to peer across his fields from the sky. Just about everything on his farm is done to precision, from testing the chemical makeup of the soil to making sure the plants are at the perfect height for spraying to ward off weeds and disease.
(Photo from Flickr user Dominik Bartsch, Creative Commons License)