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It may be thought of as a disease of the past, but ergot still causes headaches for farmers across the Prairies. While its prevalence may be high, its threat level is typically low and often a non-issue. However, the fungus that’s been a fact of life since at least the Middles Ages, remains a concern. Downgrades at the elevator and contaminated screenings cause issues for grain farmers and feedlot owners alike.

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The Canadian Alliance for Net-Zero Agri-Food (CANZA) recognizes the carbon credit market can potentially create agricultural revenue streams. As agricultural carbon pricing has slowly developed in recent years, sequestration has typically been measured by lab analysis of soil samples. Though effective, it is a slow and costly process. A rough estimate of $3.30 per acre for sample analysis would be combined with the cost of sampling and further processing. Farmers who wish to participate in the carbon assets market may require speedier data delivery at a lower cost.

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Agbee Kpogo saw an opportunity to conduct research on swine nutrition while completing an undergraduate degree in animal science in his native Ghana. Working for a company that dealt mainly with poultry, he realized there was a glaring gap in that region’s research materials on sustainable, large-scale pig farming.

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Launched in January, 2021, the Omics and Precision Agriculture Laboratory (OPAL) is the only biotechnology facility of its kind in the country. Created with funding provided by Western Economic Diversification Canada, it is led by the Global Institute for Food Security (GIFS) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask). The facility was founded in 2019 as a partnership between the National Research Council of Canada (NRC), Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and USask.

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