Bagged salads have been linked to foodborne illness outbreaks implicating Salmonella, E coli and Listeria. It was commonly believed that the post-harvest washing applied prior to bagging would remove field-acquired contamination. However, through various lines of research has illustrated that washing can result in cross-contamination of produce rather than decontamination. The majority of research performed to date has focused on the level of pathogen removal by different sanitizers.
BC potato industry is facing a burning problem of finding low value for its second grade potatoes. The sponsor, Heppells Potato Corp, being the largest producer of potatoes in BC is facing the same problem of finding optimized value for its second grade potatoes. Currently these potatoes are just culled. But the market value of these potatoes is equivalent to 10 - 20% of the whole farm's revenue. Hence they are exploring other options to process and commercialize these potatoes.
The overall objective of the proposed initiative is to develop a novel, automated and integrated field operation and berry harvesting system that will identify the root causes of increased loses; increase berry picking efficiency and product quality. Currently, there are 15 to 25% fruit yield losses during the harvesting with the existing commercial blueberry harvester. The wild blueberry growers set a goal increase the harvestable yields by 33%.
In agricultural watersheds, many meandering rivers were straightened and several rectilinear ditches were added to the drainage network in order to evacuate water as quickly as possible in the spring to improve farm productivity. The design of these modified channels was not based on natural river dynamic concepts, which include both discharge capacity and sediment transport, and thus need to be maintained frequently as they tend to adjust by eroding their banks and returning to a sinuous pattern.
Harvesting wheat grains require that the plant be cut from the stem and threshed. When the stem (straw) of the wheat bend due to pest and other factors, losses are incurred during harvesting. To minimize losses, breeders have developed pest-resistant wheat (solid stemmed) as compared to the hollow stemmed. The solid stemmed varieties may lead to higher straw strength and energy requirement which consequently will result in higher harvesting cost. Also, farmers are faced with the challenge of increased cost of transporting the straw outside the farm due to their high volume.
Agricultural use of municipal biosolids has many possible benefits for producers, including improved soil physical properties and fertility supplements for crop production. However, recent concerns with pharmaceutical ingredients, consumer product ingredients, and hormones entering into sensitive ecological environments such as surface or ground water has brought into question the continued use of biosolids in agriculture.
Fusarium fungi infestation causes Canadian grain producers a loss of almost $1 billion dollars per year. Fusarium fungi produce toxins, e.g., deoxynivalenol (DON) which cause toxic effects in animals and possibly humans. We will develop a portable hand-held hyperspectral imaging device to detect, in the field, Fusarium infestation in grains. We will also evaluate the applicability of spectroscopic Optical Coherence Tomography to accurately and quickly determine DON level in grains with high sensitivity (1 ppm to 10 ppm).
The main purpose of the project is finding a user preferred way of synchronization and user interaction on Android platform. The result of the experiment will help the applicant to design user friendly mobile application. As a result, the partner organization can get an android version of Croprecords.com with good user experience since the system will be optimized after evaluating users’ feedbacks.
Herd Navigator (HN) is a “precision technology” for dairy cow management based on in-inline milk sampling and advanced data analysis. This system has recently come to market in Canada. The proposed project will combine analysis of data from the HN system and controlled field trials to develop and validate best management practices for health, production and reproduction.
The profitability of dairy production is based on the ability of the animal to have high milk production, good health and good fertility. A major challenge for dairy producers is to select for high performing animals and avoid the undesirable correlated response between production and other traits.