Two Feet of Snow

This week I had a chance to speak to a group in Grand Prairie in Alberta, which is considerably north of Edmonton. When I left Blacksburg the cows were grazing in the fields and the leaves were popping out. When I arrived in Grand Prairie I was greeted with all this white stuff – two feet of snow!

With that being said Grand Prairie is one of my favorite places to speak. The audiences are full of energy and have a sense of humor. They really are interested in the future of agriculture.

Chief Blasts the Farm Bill!

The Canadian Agricultural Minister Lyle Vanclief was really upset with the U.S. Farm Bill and I decidedly agree with him. He stated that the U.S. was losing credibility because they are not walking their talk on the international front concerning agriculture.

He feels that subsidy levels, country of origin labeling and the increased inspection at the Canadian borders is sideswiping farmers and ranchers in Canada. Canada may also return the favor and this is very unfortunate to one of our largest agricultural trading partners.

Protectionism

Could we be moving from a period of globalization to de-globalization with the United States taking the lead? The steel and lumber tariffs are only two examples of recent events that raise suspicions that the winds in Washington, D.C. are changing. I agree with the Economist magazine that this is dangerous!

West Jet Airlines

Canadian’s version of Southwest Airlines is cheap but fun to travel. Talk about superior customer service. Delta, United, and American airlines need to go north to take a lesson in customer service.

Down on the Farm

Darn raccoons! I was out with my cows and there was a raccoon that wouldn’t back down. Of course the cows got excited and one kicked me good. My shin is black and blue. Immediately you think of rabies and I was thanking God that the Vet school here is so dang close. We took the head in for testing. That is, after my neighbor heard me and my cows bellowing. Webster, my dog gets most of the credit, though. I love black labs and mine has saved my life more than once. He was right in there keeping that coon off of us. I never met a black lab I didn’t like. I can’t say that much about people!

Sports View

Virginia Tech is sprucing up for another season of football. The new grandstands in the end zone are coming along nicely. But Tech now has to broker deals with nearby businesses to get the parking they need for all the new seats. Didn’t they think about this when they started?

My e-mail address is:sullylab@vt.edu

Editors' note: Dave Kohl, Soybean Digest Trends Editor, is an ag economist at Virginia Tech. He recently completed a sabbatical working with the Royal Bank of Canada. He is now back at Virginia Tech with his academic appointment, which is teaching, extension, and applied research.

To see Dave Kohl's previous road warrior adventures type Dave Kohl in the Search blank at the top of the page.

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