Author: Owen Roberts

I hear the train a-comin’ – from Mexico

Rail transport of freight has skyrocketed during the pandemic, and it looks like Canadian Pacific Railway Is about to ride that trend further. The company is about to become is the first rail network to link Canada, U.S. and Mexico, which has huge implications for agriculture in all three countries. Photo:

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Farming needs to be understood, then celebrated

March is Agricultural Literacy Month. What does that mean? Thanks to government-funded programs, the agencies that deliver them and some benevolent donors, students are learning the facts about agriculture in Canada. If tomorrow’s consumers are discerning and well informed, that’s something to celebrate. Photo: Agscape.

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Lights, camera …. entrapment: SILO, the movie

In the midst of a saturated media market, a movie made on a shoestring budget – about grain handling safety – has generated a buzz among rural audiences. SILO is a Hollywood style, 80 minute-long story of a farm worker who gets trapped trying to free-up grain stuck in a 50-foot high storage bin. Compared to most instructional videos, SILO takes farm safety to a whole new level.

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Consumers acceptance will determine genetically altered livestock uptake

A tug-of-war is underway in the U.S. right now between two federal departments about who will have the oversight of genetically modified plants and animals. Currently it’s the Food and Drug Administration, but the U. S Department of Agriculture believes it should be at the fore, as do most farmers. No matter which agency prevails, it will be the consumer who has the final say in this controversial market. Photo:

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Urban Cowboy

Raising awareness and promoting dialogue about current food and agriculture issues.


Headshot of Owen Roberts

Owen Roberts is a faculty member in the Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications program at the University of Illinois. As an agricultural journalist, he is the past president of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists and a lifetime achievement award recipient from the Canadian Farm Writers' Federation.

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