Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Lawrence MacAulay recently announced $6.3 million for the Western Grains Research Foundation for a five-year ‘Integrated Crop Agronomy Cluster.’
The WGRF said the cluster has been established because Canadian farmers face agronomic challenges that cut across multiple crops, and there are gaps in multi-crop and systems approaches to agronomic research.
The cluster consists of eight research activities ranging from soil health to herbicide resistance and climate change adaptation. It also includes the co-ordination of crop insect and disease monitoring, assessing and managing spray drift, developing a risk model for mitigating fusarium head blight and development and management of productive, resilient and sustainable cropping.
Collaborating research organizations include Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, Agri-Metrix, Brandon University, Farming Smarter, InnoTech Alberta, Prairie Agricultural Machinery Institute, Smoky Applied Research and Demonstration Association, University of Alberta, University of Manitoba, University of Saskatchewan, and Western Applied Research Corporation.
“The $6.3 million announced today by Minister MacAulay, combined with the investment from WGRF ($1.6 million), and other industry partners ($1.1 million) accounts for a total investment in this agronomy research of up to $9 million over the next five years, WGRF Terry Young said in a release. We would like to thank Minister MacAulay and the Government of Canada for their continued partnership and investment in this important area of crop research.”
The other funders include Alberta Pulse Growers, Alberta Wheat Commission, Brewing and Malting Barley Research Institute, Manitoba Canola Growers Association, Manitoba Pulse and Soybean Growers, Manitoba Wheat and Barley Growers Association, Prairie Oat Growers Association, Saskatchewan Canola Development Commission, Saskatchewan Pulse Growers and Saskatchewan Wheat Development Commission.