Agronomist-in-Residence program renewed for another five years
June 8, 2023 By Top Crop Manager
Manitoba Pulse and Soybean Growers (MPSG) announced the renewal of its partnership with the University of Manitoba (UM) to continue the Agronomist-in-Residence program. The program created an applied research position in 2016 to build capacity toward generating practical recommendations for pulse and soybean farmers through field research.
The renewed partnership between MPSG and the University of Manitoba will see the Agronomist-in-Residence program continue for another five years, ensuring the continuation of critical research on soybeans, dry beans and peas, and that Manitoba farmers have access to the latest information on these crops. The partnership is jointly funded by both organizations and housed within the UM Department of Plant Science.
“We are extremely proud of the work done within the Agronomist-in-Residence program over the past six years,” says Melvin Rattai, MPSG chair. “This program and the research it’s generated has helped to bridge a gap between the classroom and field, collectively helping the university, it’s students and farmers.”
Kristen MacMillan will continue her role as the Agronomist-in-Residence, where she has taken a novel approach to building an applied research program. MacMillan has been the program’s lead investigator since the program started in 2016. Going forward, in addition to conducting applied research and being active in extension, MacMillan will have an expanded role in teaching students in the School of Agriculture.
“At the outset of the program, I was given the opportunity to pursue the interface of research, extension and teaching related to soybean and pulse cropping systems,” says MacMillan. “Some of the highlights have been improvements to seeding practices and risk management for soybeans, re-visiting how nitrogen is managed in dry beans, establishment of the first long-term pea rotation study for Manitoba and development of a field scouting course for diploma students. I’m excited to keep the momentum moving forward and continue to explore the potential of soybean and pulse cropping systems.”
The program has already yielded valuable results over the past six years. Results from the program can be found in the 2021 and 2022 annual report from the Soybean and Pulse Agronomy Lab at manitobapulse.ca/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/2021-2022-Annual-Report-Soybean-and-Pulse-Agronomy-Lab-MacMillan.pdf. This report summarizes results from 18 applied soybean, dry bean and pea agronomy trials conducted over the past two years. The findings provide information for farmers, crop advisors and industry members, aiming to improve production, profitability and sustainability of grain legume cropping systems across Manitoba and Western Canada.