Investigating the benefits of natural habitats and farmland heterogeneity for the diversity and abundance of insect pollinators in southern Ontario

To address the increasingly important problem of global insect pollinator declines, this project will investigate the relationship between three different natural habitat types (hedgerow, forest patch and restored prairie grass) and their impacts on wild pollinator biodiversity in Canada. This will be studied through the use of Malaise traps place on agricultural land adjacent to these key habitats to monitor for changes in abundance and diversity of native pollinators.

Integration of molecular tools with technological evaluation to improve the performance of starter cultures for yogourt

Yogourt demand has increased significantly over the past decade, accompanied by a fast-paced diversification in types of product, requiring specialized processes. The challenge faced by Lactalis Canada is to continually adapt the fermentation process to obtain consistent and optimum quality, shelf-life and sensory profile using the cooperation of living microorganisms as starters in milk which already contains a variable microbiome.

Pulsating Airlift Pumps for Vertical Farming Applications

The need for food (26.6% increase since the year 2000 according to Statistics Canada 2016) and the cost of energy are increasing rapidly as the world population continues to grow exponentially. Moreover, world-wide demand for fresh water is rapidly increasing while supply is very limited. Agriculture uses 70% of the global fresh water supply as compared to hydroponics that only use 10%. However, these systems require large amounts of energy to operate. Reducing energy cost and improving productivity is critical for the sector to expand.

Human-Based Study to Characterize the Biomechanical, Physiological and Comfort Impact of Alternative Torso-Borne Loads and Load Distributions

Torso-borne protective clothing and load carrying equipment (ie. bulletproof vests) is fundamental to the safety of Canadian Armed Forces personnel. To make informed decisions on purchasing and developing new equipment, a suite of mannequin-based tools was developed by Defense Research and Development Canada. They are developing a female model to reflect the Canadian Armed Forces’ goal to increase diversity within its ranks, particularly with the representation of women. HumanSystems® Incorporated has been contracted to complete human testing to help validate the new tools.

CASI Platform, Environment pillar: Benchmarking the environmental and climate performance of Canadian Agriculture

By 2050, agri-food systems must produce enough to feed 9 to billion people, while reversing trends of environmental degradation caused in part by agriculture production. This is no small task, and underscores why countless sustainable agriculture standards, certifications, initiatives and platforms have emerged to encourage and measure the impacts of sustainable agriculture practices.

Disruption of swine production and marketing in Ontario due to infectious diseases in swine and human populations: impact and mitigation strategies

The overall objective of the proposed project is to construct a simulation model that will estimate production impact of disruption in swine marketing in Ontario, and propose mitigation strategies that could minimize impact of such disruption on swine populations and swine producers. Such disruption could occur due to various reasons such as outbreak of human disease among abattoir workers, or due to border closure that occurs due to hypothetical detection of reportable foreign animal disease in Canada.

Root associated microbiome of trees growing in a fractured bedrock toluene phytoremediation site - Year two

Phytoremediation is a promising in-situ technology that uses plants and its associated microorganisms (particularly bacteria and fungi) to clean up contaminated soils. The efficacy of these processes however, requires an in-depth knowledge on the diversity of microbial communities closely interacting with plant roots. Several studies have demonstrated that plants growing in contaminated soils select for competent microorganisms able to degrade these contaminants.

Using long-term monitoring data to quantify the impact of white-tailed deer reduction on vegetation and avian communities at Long Point, Ontario

Through analysis of vegetation data collected between 1991 and 2021 in Long Point National Wildlife Area, it is the goal of the research to identify trends and changes in sand dune vegetation communities following a reduction of white-tailed deer browsing pressure. By evaluating the rate and level of change in vegetation diversity, structure, and composition, recommendations can be identified for land managers to assist in achieving effective management of protected areas in relation to deer populations and resulting community impacts.

Evaluation of Suncor Experimental Photodynamic Insecticides

Insect pests can cause substantial losses in crop yield and livestock. Conventional insecticides have lost efficacy due to insect resistance and have negative impacts on humans, animal health and the environment. There is a great need for effective insecticides that can provide solutions to these problems and that are compatible with sustainable approaches in agriculture The proposed research will investigate the insecticidal activity of experimental photodynamic insecticides developed by Suncor Energy Inc. against agricultural insect pests.

Redesign of a commercial across-breed genetic evaluation system and in-silico investigations of resulting system performance and flexibility.

Genetic improvement is core to the long-term productivity and viability of all livestock industries. A review of crossbred genetic evaluation methods and approaches for national and international genetic improvement programs will determine the necessary improvements to make to AgSights’ genetic evaluation system (GES). Research will be conducted on hardware, software packages and statistical methods best suited to achieve these improvements. Research results that will be used to redevelop AgSights’ GES.