The Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF) is committing $3 million for a research chair in cropping systems at the University of Alberta to study interactions between plants, soils, crop management and the environment.
The cropping systems chair position will provide a dedicated scientist to work on farm level management systems, including soil management, economic benefits and control of pests. The chair may also provide innovation related to whole farm sustainability from economic, social and environmental perspectives.
“This position will provide much needed expertise in the area of cropping systems,” says Terry Young, WGRF board chair. “Focusing research on a multi-crop systems approach will help lead to innovative farming practices and technologies that boost yield and crop quality while controlling crop diseases and insects, improving profitability and sustainability.”
Garth Patterson, WGRF executive director, says WGRF is focused on taking a whole-farm approach to research. Strategic investments to increase agronomy research capacity in Western Canada is one of many approaches being used. He adds this research chair will create incremental field crop research capacity in Western Canada, while providing the University of Alberta the ability to advance its academic mission and catalyze new research initiatives in agronomy.