Postharvest changes in cannabis volatile terpenes under nitrogen packaging

EastCann, a small group of legacy cannabis growers, uses nitrogen packages for postharvest storage of dried cannabis. There is concern that nitrogen packaging adversely affects volatile terpenes and cannibinoids, each of which are important to cannabis products. This project will examine postharvest changes in terpenes and cannabinoids over time in nitrogen packaging compared to ambient atmospheric packaging. If nitrogen packaging significantly decreases postharvest quality, then the industry may elect to pursue alternative forms of preservation.

Post-Wildfire Stand-Type Shifts in the Western Boreal

We tend to think of wildfire as resetting the biological clock back to zero; forest types always come back to whatever was there before it burned. However, new evidence reveals that this is not always the case and fire can also cause changes to forest types. For example, very hot fires can kill seeds stored in the soil, while cool fires leave behind a significant amount of stored seed in both underground and in seed cones in surviving tree crowns. Fire can thus also function as a vegetation reset button in response to environmental conditions such as droughts or changes in wildfire frequency.

Computer Vision for Estrus and Birthing Detection

OneCup uses Computer Vision to uniquely identify livestock and wildlife from almost any angle, effectively Face ID for animals, called 360 Live ID. We then track health, growth, activity, nutrition, and phenotypes with the ID. It is a revolutionary idea that will disrupt the agricultural industry. We call our AI for cattle BETSY, or Bovine Expert Tracking and Surveillance.
In this research project, we will expand BETSY’s functionality.

Characterization and analysis of vermi-effluent as potential sources of bio-fertilizer/biostimulant in plant production

As part of the circular-economy, agriculture and plant production are developing sustainable means by which to produce healthy and nutritious crops, while using environmentally responsible products and protocols. INTAG Bio has developed a dynamic bioreactor system that allows earthworms to mineralize fish and bovine waste materials into useful biofertilizers and plant biostimulants. This project will optimize the vermi-culture conditions producing the bio-fertilizer and will valorize the resulting natural effluent for plant production.

Impact of new emerging Fusarium strains on mycotoxins in Ontario

Fusarium graminearum is a fungus that causes disease in corn, wheat, barley and oat. Not only do these diseases affect yield, but the fungus produces toxins that helps it gain access to the plant. These mycotoxins are harmful to humans and livestock and are regulated in the grain trade. Left unchecked, contaminated grain and yield losses can cost producers and the grain trade $ millions in epidemic years. Originally in Ontario we had one strain of F. graminearum that produced the mycotoxin deoxynivalenol (DON) using 15-A-deoxynivalenol as a precursor molecule. We called these 15 ADON strains.

Development and Optimization of NanopectTM–Based Nano-Fertilizers for Crop Production and Improving Food Quality

Modern agriculture relies heavily on chemical fertilizers to provide nutrients for crop production. These management practices are expensive, inefficient, unsustainable in the long-term, and require large amounts of resources. Using nanotechnology to create innovative nano-fertilizers (NF) is a potential solution that negates the negative aspects of using solely chemical fertilizers. Nanotechnology involves the manipulation of miniscule particles to engineer products for specific purposes. In agriculture, the production of NFs is a novel area of research and the focus of this project.

Exploring further possibilities and advancements of using bio-control entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) for the management of insect pests in Alberta (# 2021F119R)

Crop losses and the economic impact caused by canola insect pests is substantial, depending on outbreak conditions. With the predicted de-registration of two key insecticides, canola producers are potential subject to greater economic losses. Entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs), also known as predatory nematodes, are commercially available biocontrol agents for the management of insect pests. Advancement in application technology has improved their biocontrol efficiency against insect pests. In this project we propose to further explore EPN use against root maggots and cutworms.

Applying in vitro flowering systems to increase the efficiency of cultivar selection and propagation in cannabis

Since legalization, cannabis has become a multibillion dollar industry and is now one of our most economically important crops in Canada. A unique aspect of the cannabis industry is that the market demands are continually evolving and there is a constant need for new cultivars with unique chemical and flavour profiles. This is an expensive and time-consuming process, but will play an important role in the long-term success of Canadian cannabis producers.

Optimized lighting and defoliation strategies to increase yield and chemical uniformity in Cannabis sativa

Cannabinoid uniformity plays an important role on the quality and marketability of cannabis. Several strategies to optimize cannabinoid uniformity have not been extensively researched to date. The objective of this study is to evaluate lighting and defoliation strategies to maximize yield and uniformity of cannabinoids throughout cannabis plants. A randomized block design will be used to separate treatments. Each table will contain four lighting treatments which include HPS overhead, LED overhead, HPS with LED interlight and LED with LED interlight treatments.

Formulation and Product Testing of Seafood Compost

This research explores improving soil health through the composting of waste products abundant in NL. As a result, soil health and fertility will be improved, increasing crop yields and thus food security in the province. The partner organization will gain a marketable product developed from feedstock ingredients to a finished soil amendment with supporting data that supports its use as crop growth enhancement.