By Fadi Didi
Agri-Food institute has a new online tool to assess whether a new crop is a profitable idea.
Ontario farmers who are thinking about growing a non-traditional crop have a valuable new tool to assess whether it is a profitable idea.
"Making a Case for Growing New Crops" is an online learning resource recently developed by the Agri-Food Management Institute.
It helps farmers engage in business planning before planting.
Ashley Honsberger, Executive Director of AMI says farmers are increasingly looking at non-traditional crops to meet new customer preferences, and realize higher value per acre.
The resource was developed in partnership with the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA), who surveyed members earlier this year to gauge interest in growing new crops, as well as the best method of delivering information.
Despite a recent heat wave and lack of rainfall, the current tomato crop could be better than last year's harvest, in the Chatham area.
Farmers hope for a yield of around 45 tons to the acre, according to Kim Cooper, an agricultural specialist for Chatham-Kent's economic development department.
However he says this season, some farmers have averaged even higher than 50 tons to the acre.
On the other hand, some other farmers are reporting lower yields.