Assiniboine Community College has received a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) grant of $190,880 to build applied research capacity in support of Manitoba agriculture, innovation and sustainability. The research grant spreads over two years, enabling the expansion of applied research projects while furthering the college’s partnerships with industry. This research will enhance regional innovation, productivity and competitiveness in the agriculture sector.
• Establishing a partnership with Vermillion Growers, Manitoba’s first large-scale vegetable greenhouse, has faculty researchers at Assiniboine studying sustainable crop production technologies and integrated pest management solutions.
• Further research on the potato sector in partnership with the Manitoba Horticulture Productivity Enhancement Council (MHPEC) will generate knowledge, technologies, and products to enhance potato production and industry sustainability.
• Together with Ag-Quest Inc., research will identify the most effective fungal strains to promote early seeding potency and growth in annual field crops grown on adverse soils.
• Collaboration with the Manitoba Pulse and Soybean Growers (MPSG) will develop survey protocols for disease and insect pests, soil fertility, and agronomy. This is in support of Roquette’s $400M pea processing facility currently under construction near Portage la Prairie.
“Combined, these applied research projects build our capacity as a college to work with and support Manitoba’s ag sector with industry-specific knowledge and recommendations,” said Tim Hore, Dean of Agriculture & Environment at Assiniboine. Faculty researchers Dr. Poonam Singh, Dr. Sajjad Rao and Dr. Baljeet Singh will provide scientific leadership to the applied research projects. Students in agriculture and environment programs at Assiniboine will be involved in field and lab activities related to the research, as part of the ‘learn by doing’ philosophy integrated into the college’s programs.
This research contributes to the development of agricultural knowledge and skills and improves competitiveness and sustainability in Manitoba’s agriculture, agri-food and agri-product sectors.