The Farmers

Craig Riddel – Riddell Seed Co is owned by Craig Riddell who has farmed for 17 years in Warren, MB.  Craigs Fava Fact; “Fava’s are a fixture in our rotation because they have been a consistent performer and provide rotational benefits far superior to any other pulse crop option.  The biggest influences on fababean performance for us are early seeding and making sure we get a glyphosate application done just ahead of seedling emergence.”

Shaun Cory – Multigenerational operation, with Shauns’s two sons and dad. They like to grow a variety of crops to use a diverse rotation and get the most of their land. Fava’s are easy to harvest and don’t require nitrogen fertilize which are great attributes.

Brad Anderson – We have been farming near Cypress River, Mantioba for 10 years, we added peas to our rotation 5 years ago and tried fava beans the last 2 years.  If you are looking to grow a pulse in your rotation, fava beans do very well on wetter ground where peas would likely suffer.  We like them because they leave way more nitrogen in the soil and yield about the same as peas.  Ideally I would plant favas on well on drained heavy ground with lots of moisture.

In our first year they were very clean, this year the thisles came in late and made the nice crop look poor.  I cant really explain why this happened since the fields were managed the same, but I would recommend making sure perennial weeds are well  controlled prior to seeding.  My yields have been in the 65-80 bu/ac range, and I think there is potential for 100bu/ac or more on the right ground.  Local prices have been between $6.50 ond $7.50/bu for pig feed, human consumption markets should bring a better price yet.  They are a good paying, easy to grow crop that fit well into any rotation.  They are a good alternative to soybeans especially if you have colder ground and zero till like we do.

I think in the future favas will likely become become popular cover crops, or parts of intercrop mixtures and can be naturally mixed with Clearfield canola or mustard in an organic rotation.