Manitoba Grazing Club Promotion and Support

This project is a further extension of the work undertaken since 1999 on Grazing Club establishment and management.

To participate in MFGA’s Grazing Club, visit our Grazing Club page.

Grazing clubs have been shown in other areas of Canada and the USA to be an effective method of extending information and experiences on grazing management to local producers. A grazing club is a gathering of producers who work together to accomplish goals of good grazing management.

A Grazing Club coordinator(s) is critical to the success of these groups to assist in the organization of courses, and educational events across the province. It is also important that producers learn how to develop a grazing and management plan on their own operations. The intent is to encourage one-on-one planning sessions with the producers to implement grazing plans on their operations. A Grazing club coordinator can initiate and help sustain these activities.

Currently there are 32 grazing clubs that have been organized in Manitoba under the leadership of Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives (MAFRI), Ducks Unlimited (DUC) and Manitoba Forage Council (MFC).

• Producers in these clubs receive technical support from local technical specialists from MAFRI, PFRA and DU.
• They also have the opportunity to learn from their peers who are successful grazing managers. Local grazing issues tend to be similar within a district or even within a region and learning from the experience of others and from other speakers and researchers is of important value.
• Club members learn how to develop grazing plans relevant to their own farm operations.
• A need exists within the province to promote grazing, pasture and riparian management through the use of grazing technology and visual conceptions through grazing plan designs and demonstrations.  Technical expertise from MAFRI staff and technology of grazing computer programs will be used as one of the tools.
• A Grazing Club coordinator(s) is critical to assist these local groups. There may be more than one coordinator depending on the opportunity to adequately cover all the clubs in the province.

Technical information and some financial incentives can be offered by a local grazing club and can be important factors in the establishment of good management practices and help producers explore new innovative technology. Grazing clubs can offer a wide variety of information including calculating proper stocking rates, pasture designs, tame forage variety selection, forage establishment techniques and water system development.

Project Objective:

The objective of this project is to help producers learn information and practices on grazing management as it affects soil and water health, and landscape productivity. This will be accomplished by formal classroom sessions and also by “pasture walks” to observe and learn how to solve local problems. This is a proven technique that has been used elsewhere in Canada and the USA.

The project will also give producers the opportunity to exchange ideas with other local cattle and sheep producers, tour existing successful pasture systems, and explore innovative pasture management techniques. Producers will also learn from specialists and experts in the field of pasture, riparian, and grazing management, and attend pasture management courses and conferences.

Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives staff, along with Ducks Unlimited Canada (Manitoba) (DUC) and the Manitoba Forage Council (MFC) have assisted in the establishment of 32 grazing clubs throughout the province.  The success of these 32 clubs has been due to the dedicated work of a grazing club coordinator who assisted local cattle producers organize meetings and tours.

The financial assistance will help fund a grazing club coordinator position for the 32 clubs and provide a communications channel between all of the partnering organizations for a four-year period.

Project Contact: Roger Sheldon, MAFRI
Ph: (204) 7638-2038
Start Date: Summer 2008
Completion Date:
Funding Partners: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Greencover Canada Program Technical Assistance Component, Ducks Unlimited Canada.
Project Results: Project is ongoing.