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Potato field in bloom in B.C.'s Fraser Valley. (Photo: Heppell’s Potato Corp.)

Increasing the efficiency of fertilizer use in potatoes

The federal government is investing $1.8 million with the University of British Columbia (UBC) to determine carbon sequestration and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and develop beneficial management practices (BMPs) for increasing the efficiency of fertilizer use in potato crops, and in blueberry and forage crops.

According to the Dr. Rickey Yada, Dean, Faculty of Land and Food Systems at UBC, the project will provide new science-based knowledge on net GHG emissions by accurately measuring GHG emissions and developing mitigation technologies for potato, blueberry and forage crops in the Lower Fraser Valley.

“The research team will use state-of-the-art instrumentation and automated measurement techniques to quantify annual GHG emissions,” said Yada in a news release. “While the specific research objectives are targeted to fill regionally identified gaps in knowledge, they will be applicable more broadly to similar agricultural production systems across Canada and Global Research Alliance member countries.”

This project with UBC is one of 20 new research projects supported by the $27 million Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program (AGGP), a partnership with universities and conservation groups across Canada. The program supports research into greenhouse gas mitigation practices and technologies that can be adopted on the farm. The Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program covers four priority areas of research: livestock systems, cropping systems, agricultural water use efficiency and agro-forestry.

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