AAFC celebrates 150 years of agriculture in Fredericton
By Top Crop Manager
From planting and digging potatoes to observing insects feeding on plants to learning about coloured spuds, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) Fredericton Research and Development Centre opened its doors and wowed visitors with plenty to see and do. Despite the rain, AAFC staff welcomed nearly 400 people for an open house held on August 19th in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the department. Curious visitors spent time touring research plots, visiting labs and learning about the science that goes into developing better potatoes.
AAFC’s researchers shared their knowledge of genetics, entomology, agronomy, hydrology and measuring carbon dioxide. Josée Owen, associate director of research, development and technology transfer at the centre, says there’s a lot of new science emerging in potato research and the open house was a great opportunity to show the public the diversity of the work that goes into creating a more resilient crop. Disciplines such as bioinformatics computing and agr-environmental resilience are areas the centre is focusing on to develop potatoes that are more efficient, adaptable and environmentally-friendly. Owen said she was “very pleased to see such enthusiasm from the public in learning about the science that goes into potato research and how scientists are addressing industry challenges."