Organic Agronomy Services

Ontario crop retailer takes deeper jump into organics

By John Greig OrganicBIZ.ca.


RobWallbridge

 

One of the biggest challenges for organic crop farmers is to find solid agronomic information and markets that are reliable.

Larger conventional farm retailers have only made cautious steps into the organic market.

Thompsons Limited, however, has been putting more resources and focus on organic crops since July. The Ontario-based crop supply and marketing company has seen potential in the organic market, which makes some sense as it has a long history in marketing specialty crops.

The company hired Rob Wallbridge, a well-known organic consultant and former certifier to lead its greater push into organics. He’s also a Certified Crop Advisor.

“Thompsons has been in the organic grain markets for a number of years,” he says, including sourcing organic soybeans as part of its identity preserved and non-GMO soybean purchasing. “They found a growing demand for other organic crops.”

Thompsons is now buying organic corn, wheat, soybeans and some rye.

In the past Thompsons would have bought organic soybeans from a farmer, but the farmer would have had to find markets for his or her other crops. A more diverse crop rotation is necessary for organic production, and finding reliable markets for all of their organic production has proved challenging and a barrier for some farmers.

He’s very very knowledgeable. He’s farmed, he’s done the whole gammit. – Steve Hartman, organic crops and milk seller

Steve Hartman sells crops and milk organically, including some soybeans in the past to Thompsons in Granton. He says the hiring of Wallbridge shows that Thompson is serious about organics. Read more

Hasta la vista, meat; more pulses needed to feed hungry world

Call to reduce world meat consumption could benefit Canada’s pulse growers

By

Everyone from university professors to investment bankers and even Arnold Schwarzenegger are adding their voices to calls for reducing world meat consumption, in favour of a greater focus on plant-based proteins. As that sentiment mounts, it could bode well for Canada’s pea and lentil growers.

A group of investors representing US$1.25 trillion in assets is the latest voice calling for a shift away from meat-based diets towards a greater focus on plant-based protein. The investment group, linked through FAIRR (Farm Animal Investment Risk and Return) and ShareAction, sent a letter to more than a dozen global food companies, including Kraft Heinz and Nestle, highlighting the risks of an over-reliance on factory farmed livestock and the need to diversify into plant-based proteins.

A recent report from the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food, published in April, expressed a similar sentiment, with the study focusing on both the environmental and health benefits to be gained from lowering the amount of animal-sourced foods in diets.

Even Arnold Schwarzenegger and James Cameron are campaigning in support of a Chinese government led initiative to reduce meat consumption by 50 per cent, under the tagline ‘Less Meat, Less Heat.’ Read more

Organic Agronomy Services - Rob Wallbridge

Thompsons welcomes Rob Wallbridge as Organic Specialist

Blenheim, Ontario, Canada –  July 14, 2016

Organic Agronomy Services - Rob Wallbridge

Thompsons Limited is pleased to announce that Rob Wallbridge has joined the company as Organic Specialist.

Rob grew up on conventional dairy and cash crop farms in Central and Eastern Ontario. He comes to Thompsons with more than 15 years of experience in organic crop certification, production and marketing.

Rob is a registered Certified Crop Advisor (CCA-ON) and is a board member with the Organic Council of Ontario. He is also a volunteer member of both the AAFC Organic Value Chain Roundtable and the Livestock Working Group of the Canadian General Standard Boards’ Organic Technical Committee.

This appointment will help solidify and build Thompsons profile as a major international player in the organics supply chain.

Follow Rob Wallbridge on Twitter.

About Thompsons Limited

Established in 1924, Thompsons was purchased by The Andersons, Inc., and Lansing Trade Group, LLC in 2013. Thompsons is an integrated supplier of value-added agricultural products and services to growers in Ontario, Minnesota and North Dakota and to food processing customers worldwide. Thompsons owns and operates 12 elevators, 11 retail farm centers, 2 seed processing plants, 5 bean processing plants, a wheat processing plant, and 9 certified organic facilities. For more information, visit Thompsons Limited online at www.thompsonslimited.com.


Media Contact:

Dawn Betancourt, President, Thompsons Limited
Phone: (519) 676-5411

Soybean Storage and Conditioning


Now that your crops are in the bin, it’s important to learn how to keep them conditioned and stored properly.
Throughout the winter months it’s important to monitor your soybean temperature, and to aerate your bins.
If you haven’t sold any beans then coring out your bin can be an option to remove some fines, and help stir the grain a bit.
It is important to make sure that soybeans are stored at a 14% moisture or lower. Don’t assume that because your beans went into the bin really dry, you don’t have to aerate. Those low moisture beans are still hot and need to have the field heat removed. Read more

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