Calendar Saturday, November 18, 2017

 

Join us at our annual Research Field Tour on Thursday July 27, 2017 at the Melfort Research Station at 1:15 PM. Barbecue to follow. Click here to see more event details.

The Annual General Meeting of the SFSDC will be held in Saskatoon on Thursday January 11, 2018 at the Radisson Hotel Saskatoon at 1 PM.View more details - click here.



News

SUMMER FIELD TOUR & BARBECUE

PLEASE MARK YOUR CALENDAR !!

The annual Forage Seed Research Field Tour will be held at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm at Melfort SK on Thursday July 27, 2017.field tour

2.5 kms south of Melfort SK on Highway #6.

Plot Tours from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM with BBQ to follow

There is no charge. Register on-site at 1:15 PM.

  • Lesser Clover Leaf Weevil Control
  • Herbicide Tolerance on Clovers and slender wheat grass
  • Forage Seed Variety Demonstration and Testing Site
  • Alternate Row / Companion Crop Planting Trials
  • Plant Growth Regulators
  • Research Projects on other Forage Crops

For more information, please click here.

 Posted June 5, 2017


SFSDC POLICIES, PROCEDURES AND CODE OF CONDUCT (available upon request)

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC) was established under The Forage Seed Development Plan Regulations that became effective June 29, 2005. The purpose of the forage seed development plan is to develop the forage seed industry in Saskatchewan.

The SFSDC Board of Directors recently revised their Policies, Procedures and Code of Conduct. These policies outline the rules and procedures (management guidelines) that govern how SFSDC carries out its daily operations. Policies are outlined in key areas including: Board Procedure and Operation, Director Confidentiality, Director Conflict of Interest, and Director Code of Conduct. These policies are consistent with The Forage Seed Development Plan Regulations (amended 2015) including the purpose of the plan. If you would like to see a copy of the SFSDC Policies, contact the office by emailing This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 Posted June 21, 2017


2017 FORAGE SEED RESEARCH PLANS

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC) is expanding forage seed research with the goal to improve economic returns for our levy payers. Research includes investigating alternate planting methods that could be utilized by conventional, feed or organic growers; minor use expansion of herbicides; plant growth regulators on established crops; and insect control. Levy money is also being used to leverage significant funding from other sources for plant breeding and variety demonstration and testing such as the new provincial Variety Demonstration Program.

The Weed Management Program at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) in Saskatoon has been contracted by SFSDC to carry out research on forage seed crops. This year, herbicides will be applied to seedling sweet clover, sainfoin, tall fescue and hybrid bromegrass. An established stand of hybrid bromegrass will be treated with plant growth regulators to see if the positive results found in Manitoba can be duplicated in Saskatchewan. Test herbicides will also be applied to the established hybrid bromegrass to fill in gaps in product labels using minor use submissions.

Dr. Bill Biligetu, forage crop breeder at the U of S, is continuing his sainfoin variety selection project this year with partial funding from SFSDC. The project is developing new sainfoin lines with improved forage characteristics and stand persistence under Saskatchewan conditions.

Dr. Sean Prager, the new entomologist at the U of S, has applied for public funding for a number of research projects that look into pollinators and insect pest problems in red clover seed crops. SFSDC is very excited to support the efforts of these two new scientists at the U of S.

Signs alternate row planting

Alternate Row Planting. NARF Melfort SK. July 2016. Source: SFSDC

SFSDC has invested funds in the re-started Saskatchewan Forage Variety Demonstration and Testing program with four sites in the province including a forage seed site at Melfort, SK.

The Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) is home to much of the forage seed research program in 2017. NARF is located at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm south of Melfort, SK. SFSDC is funding a number of projects at NARF in 2017. They are:

  • Minor Use herbicide screening program on seedling red clover and seedling slender wheatgrass. Herbicides will also be applied to established red, alsike and sweet clovers. Data collected from these trials is used in minor use submissions to expand herbicide labels for forage seed producers;
  • Plant Growth Regulators (PGRs) will be applied at different growth stages on established red, alsike and sweet clovers. The results will be compared to similar treatments in Manitoba and Alberta to determine if PGRs are beneficial for seed production;
  • An expanded trial for the control of lesser clover leaf weevil in established red clover; and
  • Red and alsike clovers along with slender wheatgrass will be planted in 2017 to provide space for research on established crops in 2018.

The 2017 projects at NARF funded by the Saskatchewan Agriculture and the Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies (ADOPT) initiative under the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement are:

  • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production; where forage seed crop establishment, yields and economics will be compared under alternative planting methods with-or-without a companion crop. This is a repeat of the two-year project with meadow bromegrass and wheat to confirm results obtained in the 2014-2015 project whose report is on the SFSDC website;
  • Evaluating the use of Direct Seeding and Pre-Seeding Cultivation in Forage Seed Crop Establishment; the second year of a two-year project where red clover was underseeded with faba bean in 2016 with-or-without pre-seed cultivation combined with-or-without the application of pre-seed herbicides; and
  • Demonstrating the Effects of Red and Alsike Clover Seed Crops in Rotations; where clovers will be planted with canola as a companion crop in 2017 to determine its effect on clover seed production in 2018. In 2019, wheat will be planted in the same plots to determine if clover production can reduce nitrogen fertilizer requirements in wheat and demonstrate planting wheat directly into clover stubble.

SFSDC relies on the support of industry partners who provide products for the research program. Thank you to DLF Pickseed Canada, BASF Canada, Bayer CropScience, BrettYoung, Dow Agrosciences, DuPont Canada, Engage Agro, FMC Corporation, NuFarm Canada, Syngenta Canada and AG-Vision Seeds for their support of the forage seed industry.

For more information about current and past research projects, please look under Research.

 Posted June 5, 2017


FORAGE VARIETY DEMONSTRATION AND TESTING SYSTEM UNDERWAY

The Forage Crop Variety Testing System has been revived in Saskatchewan in 2017. Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission has provided funding toward the project. Other contributors include Saskatchewan Agriculture and forage seed companies. One of the 4 sites in the Province includes a seed yield plot. This site is located at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm at Melfort, SK. There will be numerous crops planted at the site including varieties of: sainfoin, cicer milkvetch, alfalfa, Timothy, tall fescue, Festulolium, crested wheatgrass, as well as smooth, hybrid and meadow bromegrass.

The site will be viewed during the annual forage crop field tour on July 27, 2017.

 Posted June 5, 2017


ALTERNATE ROW PLANTING RESEARCH PROJECT – 3RD YEAR RESULTS

SFSDC contracted the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) to demonstrate alternate row companion crop planting when establishing forage seed crops. In spring 2014, meadow bromegrass and perennial ryegrass were planted with a double shoot ConservaPak airseeder as follows: without a companion crop in 9" rows; without a companion crop in 18" rows; in the same rows with Unity VB wheat as the companion crop; and with wheat in alternate rows. Unity VB wheat was also planted alone in 9" rows and 18" rows.

Air seederIn 2015, meadow bromegrass seed yields were much higher when the crop was planted without the wheat companion crop. Seed yields of meadow bromegrass were somewhat higher when planted in alternate rows when compared to planting in the same row as wheat.

The meadow bromegrass plots were harvested again with the small plot combine in July 2016. Meadow bromegrass seed yields were not significantly different in 2016 in any of the planting methods showing that any impact of preceding treatments had disappeared and yields were very similar where established alone or in combination with wheat.

An economic analysis shows that Returns over Variable Expenses per acre were higher where meadow bromegrass was planted with no companion crop. Returns were slightly higher where meadow bromegrass was planted in alternate rows with wheat as compared to when planted in the same row as wheat. Overall annual returns were higher with meadow bromegrass than in the wheat alone followed by canola alone rotation. The full report including a detailed breakdown of the revenue and expenses is available on this website under Research. Look for 3rd Year Report of Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production.

 Posted June 5, 2017


ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

The 11th Annual Meeting of the SFSDC for the fiscal year 2015-2016 was held in Nipawin SK on December 1, 2016. Chair, David Maxwell gave welcoming remarks and introduced the Board of Directors, Advisors and Researchers. David’s annual report described many of the Board’s activities for the year including:

  • Advanced research initiatives in the forage seed area by continuing to work with the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) at Melfort and the Weed Management Group at the University in Saskatoon;
  • Leveraged our money for research through funding sources like Saskatchewan Agriculture’s ADOPT program, allowing us to spend levy dollars on other important areas such as weed and insect control, alternate planting methods and fertility work;
  • Held four Board meetings during this fiscal year. In July, our guest speaker was Penny McCall, Executive Director of Crops & Irrigation Branch with Saskatchewan Agriculture. Penny talked about the high trust level the general public has in farmers working to keep their food safe. This shows us that we must make efforts to maintain this trust or new regulations could make our lives much more complicated in the future;
  • Membership in the Saskatchewan Forage Network allows us to work with larger organizations like the Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association and Sask Milk to fund research needs and increase support from the major funders for forage crop research;
  • Membership in Forage Seed Canada allows us to keep in contact with issues that impact the Prairies; and
  • Held our annual field tour in conjunction with the Saskatchewan Forage Council at the University of Saskatchewan on July 26th with 38 in attendance. Also attended the NARF annual field day on July 20th. Both tours were very informative.

Executive Director, Ray McVicar’s report provided additional highlights of the 2015-2016 year including:

  • Our research program included minor use herbicide applications on three clovers, slender wheatgrass, hybrid bromegrass, Timothy, sainfoin and cicer milkvetch as well as plant growth regulators on three established clovers;
  • Saskatchewan Agriculture provided funding for two ADOPT projects that were completed at NARF in 2015 and reports made available in 2016: Fungicides on established timothy and tall fescue crops; and Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production;
  • ADOPT funding was also received for three projects at NARF in 2016: Lesser Clover Leaf Weevil control in Red Clover, Alternate Row Placement of Companion Crops with meadow bromegrass and wheat, and Alternate Row Placement and spring tillage versus no tillage with red clover and faba bean; and
  • The forage seed levy increased to $ 97,474 in 2015-2016 in most part due to an excellent red clover crop and good prices. The number of levy payers also increased to 203. A total of 4.8 million kg of forage seed (excluding alfalfa) was purchased from Saskatchewan growers with a value of $13.8 Million.

SFSDC-AGM-Dec-2016The Commission used the services of a new Auditor this year and the 2015-2016 Audited Financial Statements were reviewed. Vice Chair, James Silcox updated the group on the planned activities and Budget for the 2016-2017 fiscal year. NeuPath Group, Nipawin SK was appointed as Auditor for 2016-2017.

Thank you to our levy payers, forage seed buyers, researchers and funding organizations for their support of the SFSDC’s program. Please see the SFSDC 2015-2016 Annual Report including the financial statements under ANNUAL REPORTS on this website.

 Posted February 21, 2017


GROWER INFORMATION SESSION

The SFSDC 2016 Forage Seed Growers’ annual information session was held in Nipawin, SK on December 1, 2016. The session included reports on forage seed research, pest control and a market update.

Stu Brandt, Research Manager, Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF), reviewed the forage seed research program at the Melfort research farm in 2016. Stu described three projects including; insecticides applied to established red clover for the control of lesser clover leaf weevil; alternate row planting with faba bean and red clover to determine the combination’s feasibility, compare pre-tillage to direct seeding and measure weed control; and alternate row planting of meadow bromegrass and wheat to increase knowledge of the use of forage seed crops with companion crops in alternate rows. These projects received funding support from Saskatchewan Agriculture’s ADOPT Program.

Stephanie Ginter, Research Agronomist, NARF reviewed the plant growth regulator (PGR) research at Melfort in 2016. PGR’s were applied to established red, alsike and sweet clover to determine if plant height could be altered and seed yield improved. Stephanie also described the herbicide trials that were completed in 2016 on established red, alsike and sweet clover as well as seedling sweet clover. This on-going work is being done to generate data for potential minor use label expansions in forage seed crops.

SFSDC-Grower-Information-Session-Dec-1-2016Eric Johnson, Research Associate, University of Saskatchewan carried out herbicide trials on numerous established forage seed crops including sainfoin, cicer milkvetch, sweet clover, Timothy, slender wheatgrass and hybrid bromegrass at the Kernen Research Farm site east of Saskatoon in 2016. Eric reviewed the preliminary results of the trials as well as the results of the application of a number of rates and timings of a PGR to established sweet clover.

A group of forage crop people have been working on establishing a Forage Crop Variety Testing and Demonstration Program for Saskatchewan. Terry Kowalchuk, Provincial Forage Crop Specialist, Saskatchewan Agriculture reviewed the progress of the group to date. They are working toward having a forage seed variety test site at the Melfort research farm as well as testing forage varieties for feed at three other locations starting in 2017.

Scott Hartley, Provincial Entomologist, Saskatchewan Agriculture provided a presentation on insect pests and their control in forage seed crops as well as other crops of interest to most growers. Scott described lesser clover leaf weevil, alfalfa weevil, bromegrass seed midge, sweet clover weevil, armyworm in Timothy, and others. For in-season monitoring of the development of insect pests across Saskatchewan, Scott recommended growers check out the website: www.prairiepestmonitoring.blogspot.ca

Clayton Myhre, Field Representative, DLF Pickseed provided the market update for the session. Clayton showed there was an increase in both pedigreed acres and exports of forage seed in 2015 compared to previous years. Demand has been good, especially for certified seed. Supply increased in 2015, especially for Timothy and sweet clover. Market prices for most forage seed crops have come down from 2015. As always, it is best to try to produce a clean crop in order to fetch the highest prices.

Thank you to all of the speakers for their excellent presentations. Reports for the research projects will be made available on this website.

Posted February 21, 2017


FORAGE SEED RESEARCH REPORTS

Lesser-clover-leaf-weevil-adults

Reports from the 2016 research program are now available on this website under Research.

To view these reports on lesser clover leaf weevil, weed control and alternate row seeding look under Past Research and Current Research.

Posted February 21, 2017


PLEASE MARK YOUR CALENDAR !!

Forage Seed Grower Information Session and Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission Annual General MeetingAGM-photo-2015

Thursday December 1, 2016
1:00 PM – 4:30 PM
Evergreen Centre - Twin Lakes Room
Nipawin, Saskatchewan

  • Forage Seed Research Update
  • Insect Control Update
  • Forage Seed Market Information
  • Forage Crop Variety Testing System Update
  • Annual General Meeting 

No admission charge and refreshments provided For more information, please click here

Posted November 3, 2016


NEWS FROM SASKATCHEWAN

The growing season is complete and it has seen its fair share of moisture. Crops progressed, but temporary standing water in many fields during July and August in the northeast region of the province lowered yields. Frequent showers in August caused delays in the sweet clover and grass seed harvest but by the second week in September, much of the grasses were in the bin and the red and alsike clover was being desiccated or swathed. The rain in late September and snow in October caused problems. Unfortunately, some fields were not harvested.

Bill-BiligetuSFSDC has had another successful year. Forage seed sales from Saskatchewan growers were over $13.8 Million in the 2015-2016 crop year, jumping from $6.6 Million the year before. This increase also reflected in an increase in levy received by the Commission. The SFSDC Board has directed the increase into an expanded Research program for forage seed producers.

The Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) annual field day was held near Melfort, SK on July 20, 2016 with approximately 100 people in attendance to look at research projects on many crops. SFSDC has worked with NARF for 4 years on forage seed research projects at their site. This year, a group from the International Grassland Congress in Saskatoon took a side trip to northeast Saskatchewan and made a quick stop at the SFSDC clover crop minor use trials during the NARF tour.

Thank you to Stu Brandt, Stephanie Ginter, Brett Mollison and all the crew at NARF and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) Melfort for their efforts on the forage seed crop projects and with the field day.

The SFSDC Directors held their Board meeting in Saskatoon on August 26, 2016. Our guest speaker was Penny McCall, Executive Director of Crops and Irrigation Branch with Saskatchewan Agriculture. Penny gave an overview of Agriculture production and export levels in the province and targets for growth in the AG sector. She also introduced discussion about the need for producers to get more involved in talking with other sectors of our society regarding the Social License to Farm.

The annual forage crop field tour was held at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) on August 26, 2016 with 38 in attendance. This year’s tour included presentations from Drs. Bruce Coulman and Bill Biligetu, who led the group through the forage plant breeding and demonstration plots, while Moria Petruic and Aaron Gerein explained the herbicide and plant growth regulator research plots.

The forage breeding work in Saskatoon is a joint program between the U of S and AAFC. Their objective is to develop improved cultivars of important grasses and legumes for western Canada. The breeding program tour stops included the perennial and legume demonstration trial that showed 34 grass and 4 legume species, the perennial grass breeding nursery (hybrid bromegrass, crested wheatgrass and hybrid wheatgrass), the perennial legume breeding nursery (sainfoin and alfalfa) and the annual forage crop plot. The group also looked at projects investigating locally adapted alfalfa cultivars and stockpiled forages.

Herbicide tolerance work on sainfoin, cicer milkvetch, sweet clover, hybrid bromegrass, Timothy, and slender wheatgrass was reviewed. A new project on the use of a plant growth regulator on sweet clover seed production was also looked at. The objective of these trials is to generate data for possible minor use registrations for forage seed crops.

SFSDC would like to thank the U of S and AAFC for their hospitality and expertise at the field tour. It was an excellent opportunity to view their research work and build great connections with our research community. Special thanks to Bruce, Bill, Moria and Aaron for their efforts.

Presentations on the results of these research projects will be highlighted at the annual Forage Seed Information Session on Thursday December 1, 2016 at the Evergreen Centre in Nipawin, SK from 1 – 4:30 PM.

For more information about these research programs , please check this website under Research.

Posted November 3, 2016


FORAGE SEED RESEARCH UPDATE 2016

The SFSDC research program at the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) site near Melfort SK was expanded this year. The projects are wrapping up as another growing season comes to an end. There were some challenges along the way this year, as the spring started out uncharacteristically dry in the Melfort area. And there were almost daily showers during spraying and harvest. All the planned projects were established and preliminary results are being tabulated.Forage-Seed-Update-Nov2016

SFSDC received funding from Saskatchewan Agriculture through their Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies (ADOPT) initiative under the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement for the following 3 projects in 2016:

  • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production; repeating the two-year project with meadow bromegrass and wheat to confirm results obtained in the 2014-2015 project whose report is now on the SFSDC website. With the dry soil conditions this spring, the meadow bromegrass was slow to emerge.
  • Evaluating the use of Direct Seeding and Pre-Seeding Cultivation in Forage Seed Crop Establishment; direct seeding or cultivation was combined with the use of pre-seed glyphosate and Express SG herbicide treatments to establish red clover underseeded to faba bean. There was excellent establishment of the red clover and faba bean crops.
  • Management Options to Control Lesser Clover Leaf Weevil in Red Clover; different application timings with Decis insecticide were used to compare weevil control and red clover seed yields. We saw some treatment effects early after applications were made and will be publishing the project results soon.

SFSDC continues to fund minor use projects to develop data for future registration submissions on forage seed crops. Minor Use herbicide treatments were applied to established red, alsike and sweet clovers. Results will be compiled and data included in minor use submissions.

Plant Growth Regulators (PGRs) were applied to established red, alsike and sweet clovers at the Melfort site. Results will be compared to those already obtained in Manitoba and Alberta.

The Weed Management Program at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon carried out more herbicide screening and PGR research this summer. Herbicide treatments were evaluated on established sweet clover, sainfoin, cicer milkvetch, slender wheatgrass, hybrid bromegrass and timothy. Data generated will be included in minor use submissions.

A number of rates and timings of a PGR were applied on established sweet clover to see how the product performs in the Saskatoon region. There were crop height differences showing up early in the summer. Results of these projects will be highlighted at the annual Forage Seed Information Session on December 1, 2016 in Nipawin SK.

SFSDC greatly relies on the support of our industry partners by providing products for all of our research projects. Thank you to DLF Pickseed Canada, BASF Canada, Bayer CropScience, BrettYoung, Dow Agrosciences, DuPont Canada, and Syngenta Canada and Saskatchewan Agriculture for their continuing support of the forage seed industry.

For more information about current and past research projects, please check out this website and look under Research.

Posted November 3, 2016


2016 SUMMER FIELD TOUR UPDATE

SFSDC worked with the Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) to hold the annual field tour on July 26, 2016 near Saskatoon SK. We were hosted by the Crop Development Centre at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) and the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) Research Station. The 38 participants looked at forage research plots at Kernen Research Farm (U of S) and the AAFC Research Farm.

This year’s tour included presentations from Dr. Bruce Coulman and Dr. Bill Biligetu, who led the group through the forage plant breeding and demonstration plots, The forage breeding work in Saskatoon is a joint program between the U of S and AAFC. Their objective is to develop improved cultivars of important grasses and legumes for western Canada. The tour stops included the perennial and legume demonstration trial that showed 34 grass and 4 legume species, the perennial grass breeding nursery (hybrid bromegrass, crested wheatgrass and hybrid wheatgrass), the perennial legume breeding nursery (sainfoin and alfalfa) and the annual forage crop plot. The group also looked at projects investigating locally adapted alfalfa cultivars and stockpiled forages.

Field-tour-2016Over at Kernen Farm, Moria Petruic and Aaron Gerein explained the herbicide and plant growth regulator (PGR) research plots. Herbicide tolerance work on established sainfoin, cicer milkvetch, sweet clover, hybrid bromegrass, Timothy, and slender wheatgrass was reviewed. A project on the use of a PGR on sweet clover seed production was also looked at. The objective of these trials is to generate data for possible minor use registrations for forage seed crops. Tour participants checked out the herbicide and PGR effects and the precision seeder that was used to plant a number of the crops. There was a lot of discussion amongst the group as weed control is always of great importance to growers.

SFSDC would like to thank the Crop Development Centre and AAFC for their hospitality and efforts to host and lead the field tour. It was an excellent opportunity to view their research work and make great connections with our research community. Special thanks to Bruce, Bill, Moria and Aaron for their expertise. SFSDC would also like to thank the Saskatchewan Forage Council for collaborating with us on the field tour.

The Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) annual field day was held near Melfort, SK on July 20, 2016 with approximately 100 people in attendance to look at research projects on many crops. SFSDC has worked with NARF for 4 years on forage seed research projects at their site. Tour stops included annual crop varieties, flax seed treatments and fungicides, faba bean inputs, forage and companion crop seeding, and cleavers control.

This year, a group from the International Grassland Congress convention in Saskatoon took a side trip to northeast Saskatchewan and made a quick stop at the SFSDC clover crop minor use trials where the activities and research projects of SFSDC were described.

Thank you to Stu Brandt, Stephanie Ginter, Brett Mollison and all the crew at NARF and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) Melfort for their efforts on the forage seed crop projects and with the field day.

Posted November 3, 2016


SUMMER FIELD TOURS 2016 SASKATCHEWAN

SFSDC will be involved with two research field tours this summer. They are:

1. Northeast Agriculture Foundation (NARF) – Wednesday July 20, 2016

The NARF research field day will be held at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm 2 km south of Melfort SK on Wednesday July 20, 2016. Registration is at 8 am with plots tours throughout the morning and afternoon. There is no charge and lunch and refreshments will be provided. NARF has been the location of much of the SFSDC forage seed applied research and demonstration over the past 3 years and we are very pleased to have numerous projects ongoing at NARF in 2016. Watch the NARF website at www.neag.ca for more field day details.

2. University of Saskatchewan – Tuesday July 26, 2016

SFSDC is working with the University of Saskatchewan Crop Development Centre and the Saskatchewan Forage Council (SFC) to host the Forage Crop Summer Field Tour near Saskatoon on Tuesday July 26, 2016.

  • Demonstration of 30 grasses and 4 legume species including 2 varieties of alfalfa
  • Alfalfa nursery with 1,000 plants representing 15 cultivars
  • Many grass nurseries including hybrid bromegrass, crested wheatgrass, hybrid wheatgrass
  • Legumes including sainfoin cultivars / Agronomy Trials
  • Forage Seed Crop Herbicide Tolerance / Plant Growth Regulator Trial

Kernen FarmMeet at the U of S Kernen Research Farm east of Saskatoon, SK at 1 PM. Entrance to Kernen Farm is on the west side of Hwy#41, about ½ km north of the Junction of Hwy #5 & Hwy #41.

Plot tours from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM.

Followed by Saskatchewan Forage Council Annual General Meeting at 4:45 PM

There is no charge. Refreshments will be available

Please pre-register with: Saskatchewan Forage Council email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or Phone: (306) 329-3116

Posted May 18, 2016


RESEARCH PLANS 2016 SASKATCHEWAN

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission’s top goal is to enhance yields and economic returns for our levy payers. We have taken steps to expand our research program this year with that goal in mind.

SFSDC is very pleased to be working with the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) again in 2016 to carry out an ambitious forage seed research program. This work will be done at the NARF research site on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm south of Melfort, SK.

The following projects are underway in 2016 at NARF with support from Saskatchewan Agriculture and the Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies (ADOPT) initiative under the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement:

  • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production; where forage seed crop establishment, yields and economics will be compared under alternative planting methods with-or-without a companion crop. We are repeating this two-year project with meadow bromegrass and wheat to confirm results obtained in the 2014-2015 project whose report is now on the SFSDC website;
  • Evaluating the use of Direct Seeding and Pre-Seeding Cultivation in Forage Seed Crop Establishment; a two-year project where direct seeding or cultivation combined with the use of pre-seedling herbicides will be compared in the establishment of red clover underseeded to faba bean; and
  • Management Options to Control Lesser Clover Leaf Weevil in Red Clover; where different application timings with a registered insecticide will used to improve red clover seed yields.

SFSDC is also funding additional projects at NARF in 2016. They are:

  • The Minor Use herbicide screening program will continue with a number of herbicide treatments on established red, alsike and sweet clovers. Data from past SFSDC funded minor use herbicide tests has already been included in numerous minor use submissions to expand herbicide labels for forage seed producers;
  • Plant Growth Regulators (PGRs) are of interest to our growers and a significant program will be started this year to test the effectiveness of PGRs on established red, alsike and sweet clovers in northeastern Saskatchewan. Manitoba and Alberta have been looking at PGRs for a couple of years so it is time to see how they work in Saskatchewan. Results will be compared across the Prairies;
  • The 2014-2015 project on meadow bromegrass alternate row / companion crop seeding wrapped up in the fall of 2015. We will be maintaining the established meadow bromegrass plots from that study in 2016 to see if there are any 2nd year seed yield effects. 2016 seed yield results and an economic analysis will be available to compliment the 2015 report; and
  • Red, alsike and sweet clover crops will be planted in 2016 to provide space for research on established crops in 2017.

Minor Use Plots NARFFor the second year, the Weed Management Program with the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon has been contracted by SFSDC to carry out herbicide screening research on established crops. Herbicides will be applied on sweet clover, sainfoin, cicer milkvetch, slender wheatgrass, hybrid bromegrass and timothy. Data generated from treatments on seedling crops in 2015 has been included in ongoing minor use submissions.

The Weed Management Program will also be looking at PGRs in 2016. Last year, a block of sweet clover was planted to be utilized this year. A number of rates and timings of a PGR will be applied on sweet clover this spring to see how the product performs in the Saskatoon region.

We rely on the support of our industry partners by providing products for all of our research projects. Thank you to DLF Pickseed Canada, BASF Canada, Bayer CropScience, BrettYoung, Dow Agrosciences, DuPont Canada, and Syngenta Canada for their continuing support of the forage seed industry.

SFSDC is providing two-year funding for one of Dr. Bill Biligetu’s plant breeding projects at the University of Saskatchewan. The project will work toward developing new sainfoin lines with improved forage characteristics and stand persistence under Saskatchewan conditions.

The Saskatchewan Forage Network has been in operation for three years. The goal of the Network is to promote the importance of forage research with funders and provided a common voice for numerous organizations with interest in forage crops. The Network also combines the resources of a number of grower organizations, including SFSDC, to support forage research projects at the Masters and PhD level. To date, funding for six projects has been granted in areas including improving crested wheatgrass, new sainfoin lines, perennial native legumes, greenfeed production, introducing bloat-free legumes into pastures, and digestible fibre in high production dairy cattle.

For more information about current and past research projects, please check out our Research page.

Posted May 18, 2016


THE SASKATCHEWAN FORAGE NETWORK ENTERS ITS THIRD YEAR

The Saskatchewan Forage Network was created to facilitate a collaborative approach to research, technology transfer and industry development for all forage and livestock industry stakeholders in Saskatchewan. Through the leadership of the Network Coordinator and participant organizations, a number of significant successes have been accomplished:

  • delivery of the Saskatchewan Forage Network Graduate Student Awards providing industry financial support to post-secondary graduate students. To date, $120,000 has been awarded for delivery of projects into 2016/17 with students working on a range of topics from development of new sainfoin and crested wheatgrass lines, forage pea cultivars for greenfeed, improving grazing capacity with bloat free legumes, barley silage for dairy cows, and developing grassland songbird management on mixed grass prairie rangelands;

  • targeted emphasis on the need for increased forage research capacity and infrastructure, including direct input to the creation and development of the Livestock & Forage Centre of Excellence at the University of Saskatchewan; and

  • the Saskatchewan Agriculture funded Strategic Research Program (SRP) Forage Breeding Chair at the University of Saskatchewan. Dr. Bill Biligetu was hired for the position in May 2014.

Network members are: Native Plant Society of SK, SK Bison Association, SK Cattlemen’s Association, SK Forage Council, SK Forage Seed Development Commission, SK Leafcutters Association/SK Alfalfa Seed Producers Association, SK Prairie Conservation Action Plan, SK Sheep Development Board, and SaskMilk.

The Saskatchewan Forage Network is funded by industry contributions and the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture through the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement. Current funding ends March 31, 2017; therefore efforts are underway to ensure that this dynamic initiative is sustained well into the future.

Posted May 18, 2016


FORAGE SEED MARKET AND PRICES INFORMATION

Dave Wong, retired Market Specialist with Alberta Agriculture, has compiled many forage seed market summaries and market perspectives over the years.

This up-to-date forage seed market information and forage seed prices are available on the Peace Region Forage Seed Association website at: www.peaceforageseed.ca/markets.html or look under Resources - Marketing on this website for the link.

Posted February 3, 2016


FORAGE SEED GROWER WORKSHOP - DECEMBER 2015

The 2015 Forage Seed Growers’ workshop was hosted by SFSDC in Nipawin, SK on December 2, 2015. The agenda included an excellent line-up of speakers and presentations were made by:

Stu Brandt, Research Manager, Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF), reviewed the forage seed research program carried out at Melfort and area in 2015 including herbicide tolerance, copper fertility, desiccation of red clover and fungicide testing on established Timothy and Tall Fescue. In the copper fertility project, Stu described three years of results from applying foliar copper fertilizer to established grasses where yield responses were not as large in 2015 as in the previous two years. A report on this project is included in this edition of the Forage Seed News.

Allan Foster, Regional Forage Crop Specialist, Saskatchewan Agriculture provided an update on the forage seed establishment project, Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production, funded by ADOPT at the Melfort Station. This two year project is wrapping up where forages were planted alone or with a companion crop in the same rows or in alternate rows using air seeder technology. The final report will be available on the SFSDC website in early spring.

Bill-Biligetu-Dec-2-2015Dr. Bill Biligetu, Forage Crop Breeder at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S), talked about his program. Projects include improving hybrid bromegrass seed yield, improving seed yield of hybrid wheatgrass (an example of this crop is AC Saltlander), and screening sainfoin for improved seed size and yield. Dr. Biligetu also described the forage crop Masters’ level research projects that he is supervising at the U of S. Dr. Biligetu and Terry Kowalchuk, Provincial Forage Crop Specialist, Saskatchewan Agriculture provided an update on the development of a new forage crop variety testing program in Saskatchewan. The goal is to provide independent and reliable data on new and existing forage crop lines under Saskatchewan conditions.

Shane Lacusta, Seed Production Specialist with Brett-Young Seeds reviewed the forage seed market including alfalfa, grasses and clovers. Shane noted continuing good prices and the need for more production of many forage seed crops. For example, late spring frost in 2015 caused extensive damage to perennial ryegrass crops, and Shane related the need for more acres.

Thank you to all of the speakers and those who attended the workshop as well as our levy payers and forage seed buyers for their support of the commission’s program.

Posted February 3, 2016


SASKATCHEWAN FORAGE SEED DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

The 2015 SFSDC Annual General Meeting was held in Nipawin, SK on December 2, 2015. David Maxwell, Chair welcomed the group and introduced the Board of Directors and speakers for the day as well as provided his annual report.

Two new Directors joined the SFSDC Board this year. They are Morris Nycholat from Whitefox, SK and David Cox from Nipawin, SK.AGM-Dec-2-2015

Marcel Enns of Carrot River, SK retired after six years of service on the Board. SFSDC would like to thank Marcel for his advice, effort, and time in support of the forage seed industry. Ray McVicar provided a report on the Commission’s activities and the 2014-2015 Audited Financial Statements were reviewed. Marcel Enns updated the group on the planned activities and Budget for the 2015-2016 fiscal year. Milton & Associates, Regina, SK was appointed as Auditor for 2015-2016.

Highlights for 2014-2015 year in review include:

  • The Board held a Strategic Planning Session in March 2015 to lay out plans for the Commission’s activities and goals for the next three to five years. SFSDC has a small levy base with a limited budget, and Saskatchewan Agriculture provided the funds needed to carry out this important process. The results of the session indicated research continues to be the number one priority for SFSDC. Forage crop plant breeding, weed control, and alternate seeding methods are high on the list of research needs.
  • The research program was increased. NARF at the Melfort, SK Research Farm is the centre of most of our projects including:
    • The minor use herbicide program on seedling red, alsike and sweet clover, as well as established slender wheatgrass;
    • Plant growth regulator on established red clover; and
    • Foliar copper fertilizer applied in established grasses.
  • Saskatchewan Agriculture provided funding for two ADOPT projects that were completed at NARF in 2015. They are:
    • Fungicides on established timothy and tall fescue crops; and
    • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production.
  • The Weed Control Program at the U of S in Saskatoon was contracted to expand our minor use herbicide program on cicer milkvetch, sainfoin, sweet clover, hybrid bromegrass, timothy and slender wheatgrass. Crops were planted in June and excellent stands were established.
  • The fertility project final report “Improving Nitrogen Use Efficiency in Forage Seed Production” led by Dr. Fran Walley at the U of S is now on Saskatchewan Agriculture’s ADF website.
  • Starting in 2013-2014, SFSDC has provided $5,000 per year to the Saskatchewan Forage Network to fund new forage crop research at the U of S. To date, funding for three projects has been granted:
    • Development of crested wheatgrass lines with acceptable forage/seed yields and forage quality;
    • Development of new sainfoin lines with smaller seed size to reduce establishment costs; and
    • Comparison of barley forage with highest and lowest digestible fibre (NDF) in high production dairy cattle.
  • SFSDC was involved in two field tours in 2015. Thank you to AG-Vision Seeds and Denluc Farms for hosting the field tour near Carrot River on July 21. We also joined the NARF field day on July 22 that included the forage seed establishment project.
  • In 2014-2015, the levy decreased to $48,992 and the number of levy payers declined to 162. A total of 3.01 million kg of forage seed (excluding alfalfa) was purchased from Saskatchewan growers with a value of $6.57 Million.

Posted February 3, 2016


FORAGE SEED RESPONSE TO COPPER FERTILIZATION 2013-2015 REPORT
by STEWART BRANDT, NORTHEAST AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH FOUNDATION

Copper is an essential micronutrient needed for proper fertilization and seed formation. Copper deficiencies are not widespread in Northeastern Saskatchewan, but where they occur they can result in very substantial yield losses to susceptible grain crops. Deficiencies are most common on organic (peat) and coarse textured (sandy) soils. Deficiency symptoms can include yellowing and curling of young leaves, pigtailing (curling) of leaf tips, delayed heading, aborted heads or spikelets, stem or head bending or browning of stems and heads.

Hybrid-Bromegrass-Copper-2015In June 2013, we selected 4 sites in the Choiceland, Nipawin, White Fox, SK regions where there was evidence of copper deficiency. Sites were those on soils where copper deficiencies could typically occur, and where previous yields were below expectations. None of the sites showed typical symptoms of severe copper deficiency like pig-tailing of leaves, late tillering or very poor growth. All sites were on sandy soils with moderate organic matter. Three sites were established Timothy, and one was established Hybrid bromegrass. At each site we located 5 pairs of 0.18 m2 mini-plots. At the late flag leaf stage, we applied foliar EDTA chelated copper solution at a rate of 0.22 lb/ac in 40 gallons per acre (gpa) of water to one of each pair of mini-plots. The remaining plots were left untreated.

In 2014 and 2015, we used three of the same sites as in 2013, but dropped site 1 from 2013 and added a site at Carrot River. The 2014 and 2015 protocol was the same as for 2013, but we added 2 more foliar copper treatments; one with a Nexus Liquid Copper 5% product applied to supply 0.22 lb/ac Cu in 40 gpa of water and the second with a YARA product called Coptrac 500 also applied at a rate that supplied 0.22 lb/ac of Cu.

At maturity, all mini-plots were harvested by cutting forage near the soil surface and bagging each. After drying, the seed was stripped from the straw and cleaned to remove non-seed material. The clean seed and straw were weighed separately.

Results from 2013 to 2015 suggest that copper can be a factor in low yields of established Timothy and Hybrid bromegrass grown for seed. Results also confirm that application of foliar copper at relatively low rates (0.22 lb/ac) can be effective at correcting deficiencies. Results also confirm that applying foliar copper to mini-plots and comparing yield to adjacent untreated areas is an effective way of identifying where copper applications may be economical. What is troubling is that responses on the same fields vary from year to year, making it difficult to predict when Cu responses can be anticipated. Considering the low cost of foliar Cu fertilization and the relatively large responses to foliar Cu, it may be a useful practice to apply foliar Cu to all forage grass seed fields where the crop is grown on light textured soils with limited capacity to supply Cu. The question that remains is whether we can develop a reliable predictor or threshold for soil or tissue Cu to be used to assess the need for foliar Cu.

The Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation would like to express their gratitude to the Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission, along with Nexus Ag Business Inc. and YARA Canada Inc. for financial support for this project and for providing Cu product. In addition, the support of Darwin Leach, Karen Strukoff and Kerry O’Brien for technical assistance and of Clayton Myhre (DLF-Pickseed) in finding suitable sites and assisting with timing of operations is acknowledged.

The full project report is located on this website under Research - Past Research.

Posted February 3, 2016


EVALUATING THE PLACEMENT OF COMPANION CROPS IN FORAGE SEED PRODUCTION

SFSDC contracted Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) to demonstrate alternate row companion crop planting when establishing forage seed crops. In spring 2014, meadow bromegrass and perennial ryegrass were planted with a double shoot airseeder as follows: without a companion crop in 9" rows, without a companion crop in 18" rows, in the same rows with Unity VB wheat as the companion crop, and with wheat in alternate rows. Unity VB wheat was also planted in 9" rows and 18" rows.

Plant density per square meter were recorded at three weeks after emergence. Wheat, weed and forage crop biomass and wheat grain yield was recorded at the harvest stage of the wheat. First year results showed that planting the forage seed crop with the wheat companion crop in alternative rows improved forage establishment and reduced weed competition. Fertilizer was applied to the forage seed plots in the fall of 2014.

In spring 2015, Invigor L140P canola was planted in 9” rows in the plots where wheat alone was planted in 2014. Companion-Crop-Fall-2014Perennial ryegrass suffered extensive winter kill and ratings were not available. Meadow bromegrass and canola was harvested as well as meadow bromegrass fall regrowth. Meadow bromegrass seed yields were much higher when the crop was planted without the companion crop. Seed yields of meadow bromegrass were somewhat higher when planted in alternate rows when compared to planting in the same row as wheat. An economic analysis showed that Return over Variable Expenses per acre were much higher where meadow bromegrass was planted with no companion crop. Returns were slightly higher where meadow bromegrass was planted in alternate rows with wheat as compared to when planted in the same row as wheat or when a wheat / canola rotation was used.

This project was supported by Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture through their ADOPT program.
Thank you to DLF Pickseed, Dow Agrosciences, and Bayer CropScience for supplying seed and herbicides for the project. Thank you to Clayton Myhre, DLF Pickseed and Al Foster, Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture for their cooperation in planning and carrying out this project. Thank you to the Directors and producers of the Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission for their guidance in planning this project. Special thanks to Stewart Brandt, Brett Mollison and all the crew at NARF and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Melfort for their advice, expertise, time and efforts to carry out this project.

The full project report is located on this website under Research - Past Research.

Posted February 3, 2016


NEWS FROM SASKATCHEWAN

It has been a very interesting year in Saskatchewan. The spring was better than the past two years for getting crops into the ground in a timely manner because there was not as much surface water in many areas. However, after seeding, concerns over dry soil conditions spread across the province. In many areas, rains didn’t come until mid-to-late June, leading to uneven crop emergence. In other areas, excess surface water continued to be a problem.

crested-wheatgrassIn Northeast Saskatchewan, seeding progressed quickly because there was not as much snow last winter and spring rains were minimal. Forage seed crops suffered from the drought. Some perennial ryegrass crops suffered winter kill. Hard frosts at the end of May caused slow crop development, especially in the grasses. The summer was fairly hot and we received some regular rain that caused some crops to lodge and second growth to start. Sporadic rains in August caused delays in the grass seed harvest but by the second week in September, most of the grasses had been harvested without too much shattering loss. 

Grass seed yields were below normal to normal. Clover seed crops established well last year and they have been looking pretty good this year. Let’s hope we have good weather to get them off.

The SFSDC Board held a meeting in July and welcomed Leanna Rousell, as an ex-officio Director. Leanna is the Executive Director of the Saskatchewan Forage Council. Thank you to Leanna for joining our Board.

SFSDC has worked with the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) to carry out much of our research program for the past three years. We are also working with the University of Saskatchewan this year to expand our minor use data collection program. We want to thank NARF and the U of S for this collaboration, as well as Saskatchewan Agriculture and their ADOPT Research Funding program for their support.

The annual Forage Seed Information Workshop and the SFSDC Annual General Meeting will be held on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 at the Evergreen Centre in Nipawin, SK from 1 – 4:30 PM. There will be speakers on forage seed research, crop production and a market update. There is no charge and refreshments will be available. For more information, please click here.

Hope you can make it to the Grower Workshop and AGM in December!!

Posted October 16, 2015


SASKATCHEWAN FORAGE SEED RESEARCH PROJECTS 2015

Research has always been the main objective for the SFSDC and the Directors look for ways to expand the research program with the Commission’s limited funds.

For the third year, SFSDC worked with the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) at the Melfort Research Farm to carry out a large portion of our research program. This partnership has worked well and we hope to keep it going in the future.

The 2015 projects carried out at NARF with funding from SFSDC levy payers and our industry partners are:

  • The continuation of the minor use herbicide program on a number of seedling and established forage seed crops. Herbicides were applied on seedling red, alsike and sweet clover, as well as a number of herbicide treatments on established slender wheatgrass.
  • We also looked at plant growth regulator applications on established red clover. With the encouraging results of foliar copper research on established forage grass seed sites in the past 2 years, a third year was applied in 2015. Look for the two year results report on the SFSDC website.

In addition to the above projects, the following projects were carried out at NARF with support from the Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies (ADOPT) U-of-S-Weed-Control-June-2015initiative under the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement:

  • Fungicides for Use on Established Forage Seed Grasses where registered fungicides were applied to established timothy and tall fescue crops to increase seed production; and
  • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production. This is the final year of a two year project to compare alternate methods of planting forage seed crops with and without a companion crop. The perennial ryegrass plots did not survive the winter, while the meadow bromegrass plots will continue to be evaluated. Clearfield canola was planted in the same areas where wheat alone was planted in 2014 to provide economic comparisons to the forage seed crop.

With the decision by the SFSDC Board to expand our minor use herbicide program in 2015, the Weed Control Program at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon was contracted to work on minor use herbicide research on cicer milkvetch, sainfoin, hybrid bromegrass, timothy and slender wheatgrass. The goal is to see more crop protection products registered for use in forage seed crops. Crops were planted and seedling treatments applied, with an additional area planted for research on established crops in 2016. The plots established very well and we are off to a great start at the U of S.

SFSDC has also allocated research funding for the forage crop plant breeding program at the University of Saskatchewan for their proposed project for improved sainfoin. It is our goal to use levy funds to leverage increased support for forage crop plant breeding in numerous crops for many years to come.

SFSDC would like to acknowledge BASF Canada, DLF Pickseed Canada, Dow Agrosciences, Bayer CropScience, Syngenta Canada, BrettYoung, DuPont Canada and Yara International for supplying products for our research.

For more information about current and past research projects, look under Research on this website.

Posted October 16, 2015


2015 SUMMER FIELD TOUR UPDATE

SFSDC held their annual field tour on July 21, 2015 near Carrot River, SK. with 25 people in attendance. Norm Klemmer with AG-Vision Seeds of Carrot River hosted the group and provided the gathering point for the afternoon.

This year’s tour included a presentation on forage crop plant diseases by Faye Bouchard, Provincial Plant Disease Specialist with Saskatchewan Agriculture. Faye described the basic requirements for plant disease development in all crops, and went on to describe forage crop plant diseases common to Northeastern Saskatchewan. She brought along samples of some of the diseases as well as a mobile microscope that provided up-close live video of disease symptoms and broadcast the images to nearby smart phones. Field-Tour-Carrot-River-2015

Danielle Stephens, Integrated Pest Management Agrologist with Saskatchewan Agriculture was also able to show those in attendance the symptoms of swede midge from nearby canola fields.

The tour group looked at 3 forage seed fields south of Carrot River. Denluc Farms provided the opportunity to look at their Slender wheatgrass, Dahurian wildrye and Pubescent wheatgrass fields. A good discussion was held on production of these forage seed grass crops and potential problems with crop establishment and management.

SFSDC would like to thank AG-Vision Seeds and Denluc Farms for their kind hospitality for the field tour and their support of our grower organization.ss fields. A good discussion was held on production of these forage seed grass crops and potential problems with crop establishment and management.

SFSDC also took part in the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) annual field day on July 22, 2015 at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm south of Melfort, SK. Over 100 people were in attendance for the field day and checked out projects on plant growth regulators on wheat, disease in canola, insects, soybeans, flax, crop fertility, as well as forage seed crop establishment.

SFSDC would like to thank Stu Brandt and the NARF crew for their efforts on the forage seed crop research program at their site and for hosting the field day.

Posted October 16, 2015


ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING ANNOUNCEMENT

PLEASE MARK YOUR CALENDAR !!

Forage Seed Grower Workshop and Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission Annual General MeetingAGM-group-Dec-2-2014

Wednesday, December 2, 2015
1:00 PM – 4:30 PM
Evergreen Centre
Nipawin, Saskatchewan

  • Forage Seed Research Report
  • Forage Seed Market Information and Outlook
  • Forage Seed Production Information
  • Annual General Meeting

No admission charge and refreshments provided

For more information, please click here.

Posted October 16, 2015


ASSESSMENT OF UREASE AND NITRIFICATION INHIBITORS IN FORAGE SEED PROJECT – U OF S
– Final Report is now available

Drs. Fran Walley and Rich Farrell, together with their graduate students Nils Yannikos and James Woodhouse, recently completed a three year research study examining the impact of enhanced efficiency fertilizer products in forage grass seed production. The project was funded by the Agriculture Development Fund (ADF) from the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, with additional funding provided by the Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission.

The Final Report is now available at: www.agriculture.gov.sk.ca/apps/adf/ADFAdminReport/20100067.pdf

This link can also be found under the Research section of this website.

Posted October 16, 2015


ECONOMICS OF FORAGE SEED PRODUCTION GUIDES – MANITOBA AGRICULTURE

Guidelines for Estimating Forage Seed Production Costs 2015 is now available on the Manitoba Agriculture website at: www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/business-and-economics/financial-management/pubs/cop_crop_forageseed.pdf

Information is presented for the following forage seed crops: alfalfa, Timothy, annual ryegrass, red clover, perennial ryegrass, meadow fescue, birdsfoot trefoil, and tall fescue. This link can also be found on this website under Resources -> Production.

Posted October 16, 2015


NEWS FROM SASKATCHEWAN

By Ray McVicar, Executive Director
Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC)

So far, 2015 has been a better spring for getting crops into the ground in a timely manner. At the time of writing this article, concerns were growing about dry soil conditions and some good rains would be much appreciated. There are other areas of Saskatchewan where excess surface water continues to be a problem. In Northeast Saskatchewan, seeding has progressed sooner than the past three years and established forage seed crops look like they have wintered better as well. Although the cold night-time temperSpringUpdate2015atures of mid-May brought some concerns due to slow crop development, hopefully, the crops have survived and will develop normally.

At our Annual General Meeting in December, three new Directors joined the Board. They are Denton Peifer from Nipawin; Morley Doerksen from Garrick; and Dr. Bill Biligetu from the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon. Denton and Morley are long-time growers of forage seed and Bill is our new forage crop plant breeder. We welcome all three to the SFSDC Board of Directors! Thank you to all of our Directors for their commitment to our industry.

We are also looking forward to having Leanna Rousell join our Board as an ex-officio Director. Leanna has replaced Leanne Thompson as the new Executive Director of the Saskatchewan Forage Council. Thank you to Leanne for her time with us.

The Board decided to hold a Strategic Planning Session to help lay out plans for the Commission’s activities and goals for the next 3 to 5 years. Eclecthink Consultants, Bill and Susan Brooks, were contracted to facilitate the strategic planning session on March 5, 2015 and guide the development of resource materials as well as write the session Report. There were 15 people in attendance including the current SFSDC Directors, the Executive Director, 3 forage seed buyers and the facilitators. We also received written input from other stakeholders. This provided excellent key-player contributions to our session and indicated the importance placed by our Board on the session.

SFSDC would like to thank Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture for their support of this important project. SFSDC has a small levy base with a limited budget. Funding from Saskatchewan Agriculture allowed the organization to complete a professionally facilitated strategic planning session for the first time.

SFSDC will be working with AG-Vision Seeds of Carrot River, SK to hold an afternoon field tour on Tuesday, July 21, 2015. We will meet at the AG-Vision plant at 1 PM. Watch the SFSDC website at www.skforageseeddc.com for more details.

The Northeast Agriculture Foundation (NARF) research field day will be held at Melfort Research Station on July 22, 2015. SFSDC has worked with NARF to carry out much of our research program for the past two years, and we are very pleased to continue in 2015. Watch the NARF website at www.neag.ca for more details.

Posted June 4, 2015


SASKATCHEWAN RESEARCH PLANS FOR 2015

By Ray McVicar, Executive Director
Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC)

The SFSDC Board has directed an increase in the forage seed research program for 2015. At our recent planning session, the SFSDC main objective of providing research to improve production of forage seed crops was reinforced.

SFSDC is very pleased to once again be working with the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) at the Melfort Research Farm to carry out a large portion of our research program. We are also pleased to have a new research partner on 2015. For the first time in many years, weed control research in forage seed crops will be carried ResearchPlans2015out by the Weed Control Program at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon.

The following projects are planned at NARF with funding from SFSDC levy payers and our industry partners:

  • Continuation of the minor use herbicide program on a number of seedling and established forage seed crops. Trials on seedling red, alsike and sweet clover will be carried out. We will also look at a number of herbicide treatments on established slender wheatgrass as well as plant growth regulator applications on established red clover.
  • Continuation of the foliar copper fertilizer research on established forage grass seed sites. With the encouraging results of foliar copper applications in the past 2 years, a third and final year will be completed in 2015. Look for the two year results report on the SFSDC website.

The following forage seed projects are planned at NARF with support from the Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies (ADOPT) initiative under the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement:

  • Management Options to Control Lesser Clover Leaf Weevil in Red Clover. This project will demonstrate the application of a registered insecticide on established red clover to increase seed production;
  • Fungicides for Use on Established Forage Seed Grasses where registered fungicides will be applied to established timothy and tall fescue crops to increase seed production; and
  • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production. This will be the final year of a two year project to compare alternate methods of planting forage seed crops with and without a companion crop.

The SFSDC Board has decided to expand our minor use herbicide program in 2015. The Weed Control Program at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon has been contracted to begin minor use research on 2 forage seed legume and 3 forage seed grass crops. Seedling crops will be planted and tested in 2015, with an additional area planted for research on established crops in 2016. Our growers are very interested in seeing more crop protection products registered for use in forage seed crops and this expanded program will help achieve that goal.

SFSDC has committed research funding to the Saskatchewan Forage Network. The Network combines the resources of a number of grower organizations to support forage research projects at the Masters and PhD level. To date, funding for three projects has been granted.

Research funding support has also been allocated toward the forage crop plant breeding program at the University of Saskatchewan for their proposed Agriculture Development Fund project for improved sainfoin. We hope to be able to use levy funds to leverage increased support for forage crop plant breeding for many years to come.

For more information about current and past research projects, please check out the SFSDC website at: www.skforageseeddc.com and look under Research.

Posted June 4, 2015


PRODUCER PROFILE

Nels Smelland, Nipawin Saskatchewan
Director, SFSDC and long-time grass seed grower

Nels-SmellandNels Smelland has been farming in the Nipawin, SK area most of his life and started growing grass seed in 1985. Nels grew both Intermediate and Crested Wheatgrass for the first 25 years, and then took on production of Slender Wheatgrass for the past 5 years.

Grass seed production can really provide a great return when things go right, but can ruin you when it goes bad on too many acres. For that reason, Nels has never put in more than 10 per cent of his total crop production into forage grasses. His advice to new growers is to start small on a good field and take your time. Patience is the key to grass seed production.

Nels first got into grass seed because he wanted to diversify his crop production. The mid-80’s to mid-90’s saw tremendous growth of special crop acres in western Canada and because Nels had some white clay soils, he needed a crop that would work in those conditions. He was interested in building his clay soils and crested wheatgrass roots are deep and break up the clay to a significant depth. “On my farm I need the grasses to fracture my clay soils. I have grown grass seed on clay, brown and black soils with good luck. However, on sandy soils you can have problems in dry conditions.”

We have all heard stories of big money in grass seed production, but Nels started with small acres. At first he used a quad-mounted sprayer for treating weed patches, and even had to use a weed eater on very bad weed patches at the start.

Nels produces grass seed for the positive economic returns. For example, when he planted Slender Wheatgrass for the first time he harvested 750 pounds per acre at $1.50 per pound. But his experience shows that he has lucked out with an excellent return about once in every 7 or 8 years. It seems that grass seed will often provide high returns when the major crop prices are low.

He also includes grasses for the benefits of crop rotation. On his farm, whenever he takes a grass crop out of production, it is a perfect time to grow a crop of oats with no wild oats. However, Nels advises, “Don’t push your crop rotation with grass seed crops. I have never had good yields in years 4, 5 or 6. Grass seed can dry out the soil and it is best to move on after year 3.”

Nels has always planted and strived to produce pedigreed seed because the end result will return more dollars per pound. “You don’t always know how things will turn out, so if things go wrong you will end up in the common market.” Buying pedigreed seed is not much more expensive than common seed, but Nels advises that “You have to spend money to make money and the money you spend on pedigreed seed will be returned very fast when you sell it. Purchase your pedigreed seed from a viable contractor. You need the purest seed you can get or you will spend a lot of time out in the field roguing. Pedigreed seed really helps because the tolerance to weeds in the seed is much lower.”

Field selection is extremely important. Take note of the weeds that have been in the field in previous years. “Perennial weeds, wild oats, quackgrass... primary noxious weeds. They could be separable at the plant, but they could cause a nasty note on your field inspection report that might lead to problems, especially if the seed is going across the border.” So select a field that is as clean as possible. Certain crops cannot be grown in close proximity to other crops and require isolation to prevent cross pollination. Nels advises, “Start to prepare the field years before you rotate into grasses. You need to know your field history long before you grow these crops. In my experience, the fields where I was not trying to save money by reducing inputs turned out to be my best fields.”

Weed control has improved over the years. “There are more chemicals available than when I started, but there are still so few that have labels for forage crops. Talk to other growers, talk to your contractors and your agronomist for hints on weed control. We need to do research on herbicides for these crops, as well as research on cover crops and fertility.”

When planting grass seed crops, Nels relates that he has not had good luck using companion crops. “We need more research on alternate row planting methods and the use of companion crops. Until we get more research results, summerfallow is needed in my area to get good establishment. Fallow is not needed coming out of these crops.”

Nels feels that the old regular press drill was a great way to plant grass seed crops because they were so accurate with seeding depth and seeding rate. However, he now uses an air delivery drill. “I would not go back to the old press drill but the key to seeding is in the packing. I often pack the crop twice. Put it in as shallow as you can and wait for a rain. You need patience with the new drills. The crop will eventually fill in when it rains. It may start out patchy, but I get 90 per cent of a field after it fills in.”

Planting grasses on Nels’ farm often occurs in August. “In the wet years, we got a rain shortly after seeding and it was fine. I have never had problems with winter kill. We are told to plant earlier than I do to provide more time for the crop to establish.”

Nels uses no nitrogen fertilizer with the seed. He uses about ½ the rate of phosphate with the seed compared to his wheat crop. He feels there is no problem applying more phosphate, but it needs to be with the seed. Established crops need nitrogen fertilizer in the fall. “Later in the fall is better even if there is 2 inches of snow on the ground.” Nels advises that fertilizing in the fall is always better than the spring. “I use about 60 to 90 pounds of nitrogen per acre after the first year. You don’t want lodging due to too much N fertilizer. I have used liquid and dry fertilizer and they have both worked for me.”

He usually applies broadleaf weed control in the fall. “I spray the first year in the fall and often do not need further broadleaf weed control after that. I control wild oats in the spring at the proper leaf stages and for sure as early as I can. If you use the wrong chemical when the crop is booting, you lose yield.” Nels would also like to see more research into plant disease control on grass seed crops to see what works and what type of return can be expected.

Nels has a lot of experience with harvesting grass seed crops. “Give the head a nice gentle tap and if some seeds start to pop out or shatter it is time to swath. Talk to other growers to see how they determine when to swath. If you go too early, you will get smaller seed with lower germination. Swathing requires a very sharp knife and guards and you need to travel slow. If there is gum buildup on the knife; spray water on the knife to dissolve it. It takes patience, but water will work as well as anything. In other years we have done hundreds of acres without any gumming.”

“Combining grass seed is similar to combining slightly tough oats. You need to travel slower than wheat. Don’t be afraid to throw what looks like seed over the back. Grab a hand full of the chaff and take a knife and cut it. If it pops there is seed in it. If it doesn’t pop it is just chaff. Don’t try to save it all or you will have a tough time handling the crop in your truck, bin and at the cleaning plant.”

More advice for a new grass seed grower... “You will need to spend your summer looking after your crop. You won’t have time to spend the summer at the lake because Slender Wheatgrass is ready to swath about 3 weeks before wheat, Crested Wheatgrass is ready about 2 weeks before wheat, and Intermediate is ready at about the same time as wheat.” But Nels purposely selected these crops because of the early harvest. It allows him to space out harvest and get a lot of work done before his other crops are ready.

Good storage with good aeration will allow the crop to be combined a bit tough and aeration works well with grasses because the air easily goes through it. “Dry it out really well. I have never actually over dried my grass seed. If the seed was put into the bin hot, use aeration to cool it to save your germination.”

Grass seed will compress in the bin, so you need large openings in your hopper. If you have a flat bottom bin, compaction is not as much of a problem, but shovelling is very very dusty.

Nels has always gone with a contract and usually contracts about 75 per cent of his production. “If you contract, you usually don’t have to store the crop for a long time. If you don’t have a contract you may get a higher price, but you may have to wait for a year or two.”

When asked about the key to grass seed production, Nels says “Having patience is the key to growing forage crops. Roguing and marketing. It all takes time. And talk to other grass seed growers to find out what has gone wrong and right for them.“

Posted June 4, 2015


Forage Seed Response to Copper Fertilization 2013-2014 Combined Report

by Stewart Brandt, Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation

In June 2013, 0.22 lb/ac of foliar EDTA chelated copper was applied at the flag leaf to established timothy (3 locations) and hybrid bromegrass (1 location) on replicated miniplots in the Choiceland, Nipawin, and White Fox, SK regions. This was repeated in June of 2014, and we added 2 other liquid Cu foliar treatments; dropped one unresponsive site and added another potentially responsive hybrid bromegrass site. At harvest we evaluated treatment effects on seed yield in both years and on straw yield in 2014.

At Site 1 in 2013 (a field with a history of copper fertilizer application) seed yield of timothy did not increase when copper was applied, and showed a weak tendency to decline slightly. At two other sites in 2013, copper fertilization increased seed yield of timothy by 20 and 29%. At Site 4, copper fertilizer increased seed yield of hybrid bromegrass by 30%. The three sites where copper did increase yield all had no known history of copper application. The combined analysis of the three sites that had no known history of copper fertilization indicated that the copper response was statistically significant at the 5% probability level.

During 2014, foliar copper had minimal impact on straw yield at 3 of 4 locations, and tended to increase straw yield at one location. Seed yield averaged across the 3 copper treatments and 4 locations were 126% of the untreated check. This ranged from a low of 97% at the least responsive site to 155% of the check at the most responsive site. There was no clear indication that any foliar copper product was superior to another.

These results suggest that low seed yield with forages may reflect copper deficiencies. Forage seed growers in these regions who suspect copper deficiencies should consider applying copper to test strips in their fields to verify both the presence and magnitude of responses. Results also confirm that application of foliar copper at relatively low rates can be effective at correcting deficiencies. Results also confirm that applying foliar copper to mini-plots and comparing yield to adjacent untreated areas is an effective way of identifying where copper applications may be economic.

For additional information about copper fertilization and effectiveness of different forms of copper, see the Research Results page ‘Some Useful Information about Copper (Cu) and Copper Fertilizers’ on the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation website at www.neag.ca

The Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation would like to express their gratitude to SFSDC, Nexus Ag Business Inc., and YARA Canada Inc. for financial support and for providing copper product. The technical support of Darwin Leach, Karen Strukoff, Kerry O’Brien and Clayton Myhre (DLF-Pickseed) is acknowledged.

Watch the SFSDC website at www.skforageseeddc.com under Research for the full report.

Posted June 4, 2015


SFSDC Annual General Meeting

The SFSDC Annual General Meeting was held on December 2, 2014 in Nipawin, SK.

David Maxwell, Chair welcomed the group and provided his report for the year. Three new Directors joined the Board. SFSDC-AGM-groupThey are Denton Peifer, Morley Doerksen and Bill Biligetu.

Special thanks go to Roger Kirk, Randy Tulloch, Clayton Myhre, and Bruce Coulman who retired from the Board after nine years of service and were presented with Certificates of Appreciation.

Ray McVicar, Executive Director provided a report on the Commission’s activities. The Audited Financial Report for 2013-2014 was reviewed. The 2014-2015 Budget and list of planned activities for the new year were presented by James Silcox. The Auditor for 2014-2015, Milton & Associates, Regina, SK was appointed.

Highlights of 2013-2014 included:

      • An increase in both the forage seed levy ($56,931) and the number of levy payers (176). The increase in the levy was due in part to a good crop in many areas in 2013 and strong prices for most forage seed. There has also been an increase in acres planted over the past year as long-time and new growers have seen canola and wheat drop and demand stay strong for forages.
      • A total of 3.6 Million kg of forage seed (excluding alfalfa seed) was purchased from Saskatchewan growers in 2013-2014 with a value of $7.9 Million.
      • Terry Kowalchuk, Provincial Forage Specialist joined the Board as Ex-Officio Director.
      • We continued to look at potential minor use herbicides on nine established forage seed crops at the Melfort NARF site. Products were donated by BASF Canada, Dow AgroSciences, Bayer CropScience, Nufarm Agriculture, Syngenta Canada, DuPont Canada, and DLF-Pickseed. BASF Canada provided a financial contribution to the project.
      • Encouraging results in the 2013 copper trial led us to carry out a more in-depth project on copper fertility in 2014 with more products and sites. Products were provided by Yara International and Nexus Ag.
      • The Commission applied to Saskatchewan Agriculture’s Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies (ADOPT) program, and was successful in receiving support for 5 new projects at the NARF site. These are:
        • Controlling Noxious Weeds & Improving Seed Quality in Established Forage Legume Crops;
        • Controlling Noxious Weeds & Improving Seed Quality in Established Forage Grass Crops;
        • Demonstrating the Proper Application of a Desiccant on Red Clover Seed Crops;
        • Management Options to Control Lesser Clover Leaf Weevil in Red Clover; and
        • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production.

AGM-Banner-2014

      • We continued to partner with the University of Alberta by providing $1,000 in 2013-2014 to complete their research on “Pheromone-Mediated Mating Disruption for red clover casebearer.” The final report can be found on the SFSDC website.
      • The fertility project “Improving Nitrogen Use Efficiency in Forage Seed Production” led by Dr. Fran Walley at the University of Saskatchewan is now winding up. The final report is expected out in March 2015.
      • Starting in 2013-2014, SFSDC provided $5,000 per year for three years to the Saskatchewan Forage Network with the objective of increasing the amount of forage crop research at the University of Saskatchewan. The Network has now begun to allocate a total of $43,000 per year towards Masters or Post-Doctorate student projects on forage research, scheduled to start in 2015.
      • A new display banner was produced and the SFSDC information brochure was revised with the financial support of Saskatchewan Agriculture. The display banner and brochure will be used to promote the forage seed industry and the activities of SFSDC at trade shows, field days and grower meetings. This is the first time SFSDC has had a display. The previous brochure was published in 2005.
      • The research field day was held at Melfort in July 2014. We joined the NARF plot tour for much of the day and then held our Forage Seed Mini-Tour in the late afternoon to focus on our research program.
      • Joined Forage Seed Canada in 2014 with the objective to better coordinate our efforts with the other forage seed grower organizations in the Prairies.

Thank you to those who attended the AGM, as well as our levy payers and forage seed buyers for their support of the Commission’s activities.

Posted January 27, 2015


Forage Seed Grower Workshop Update

The Forage Seed Grower Workshop was held on December 2, 2014 in Nipawin, SK. Presentations were made by:

Adger-Banken-AGM-2014Adger Banken, Director Export and Procurement with DLF-Trifolium in The Netherlands used a webcast link to provide his presentation and speak to the group. Mr. Banken began with a description of DLF Trifolium corporation. DLF is a very large player in the world forage seed industry with about 25% of the world market including about 50% of the European market. With DLF-Trifolium’s purchase of Pickseed Canada in the summer of 2013, the corporation now has a significant presence in northeastern Saskatchewan.

A number of countries in Europe were described regarding the production year for forage seed crops. The growing conditions in 2014 for Denmark and Netherlands included a mild winter, an early spring, good growing conditions, a dry harvest and good yields. A higher carryover of stocks is expected to lead to a decline in acres in Denmark in 2015. Harvest conditions for red clover and alfalfa in France and Czech Republic were very wet. Overall, the European Union saw a slight increase in grass species production and a slight decrease in legume seed production in 2014.

On the market side, European purchases are split into two categories; the professional or trades market and the consumer market. In 2014, the professional market was steady with a strong focus on price and a tendency to look for lower cost blends. The consumer market also is experiencing a move toward blended combinations and private label products. There is good opportunity for Canada in the European market for perennial ryegrass, timothy, alfalfa, annual ryegrass, tall fescue, and red clover.

With regard to the development of Roundup Ready alfalfa, DLF is not against RR alfalfa, but currently there is zero tolerance for GMO contamination in Europe, so any RR alfalfa presence is a liability in Europe.

Mr. Banken ended his talk by describing the importance of the Canadian Dollar exchange rate with the Euro for forage seed sales and need for reliable transportation of product from Canada to the markets.

Dr. Bill Biligetu, Forage Crop Plant Breeder at the University of Saskatchewan, talked about forage crop plant breeding and brought us up to date on his program plans for forage breeding in the next few years. Dr. Biligetu’s position is new and is funded by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture. The funding also includes a Technician position, but all the equipment and plot land is currently still with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC). Dr. Biligetu is in the process of developming the future direction of his program. Current ideas include work on: hybrid and meadow bromegrass – better adaptation to wet conditions; crested wheatgrass – taller plants, heavier and fewer tillers per plant, bigger seed size, later maturity for higher quality forage; Timothy – improved seed yields; Tall Fescue; and alfalfa – local adaptation, salt tolerance. Annual forage crop breeding collaboration with other plant breeders at the University of Saskatchewan is also on the radar. He is also considering working with AAFC Swift Current on native species plant breeding.

Stu Brandt, Manager, Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF), reviewed the forage seed research program at Melfort and area in 2014. Projects included minor use weed control in established grass and legume species, and copper fertility foliar treatments at the flag leaf on established grass seed crops at four sites. These projects were funded through the SFSDC checkoff. A new project comparing the placement of a companion crop with two separate forage grasses using same row and alternate row seeding was described. Early results indicated that seeding in alternate rows improved forage establishment and reduced weed competition. This is a two year project that will continue in 2015.

The project on desiccation of red clover was also described and early results were reviewed. It appeared that increasing water volume had a greater impact on dry-down than increasing the rate of desiccant.

These two projects as well as two projects demonstrating the importance of controlling weeds in established forage seed crops were funded though the Saskatchewan Agriculture ADOPT program.

Please check the SFSDC Website at www.skforageseeddc.com under Research for more information on current and past forage seed research projects.

Terry Kowalchuk, Provincial Forage Specialist, Saskatchewan Agriculture provided an update on Sainfoin research and production. The new variety AC Mountainview released in 2013 was described. It is receiving more attention as farmers and ranchers look for no-bloating legumes. AC Mountainview is best suited to the Dark Brown and Brown soil zones and needs well drained soils to thrive.

Thank you to our speakers and those who attended the Workshop, as well as our levy payers and forage seed buyers for their support of the Commission’s activities.

Posted January 27, 2015


Speaker Line-up for the 2014 Forage Seed Grower Workshop

SFSDC is pleased to announce our speaker line-up for the upcoming Forage Seed Grower Workshop on December 2, 2014 in Nipawin Saskatchewan.

      • Adger Banken, Director Export and Procurement, DLF-Trifolium, The Netherlands will speak on the Forage Seed Market via webcast.Adger Banken
      • Stu Brandt, Manager, Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation, Melfort SK will review the 2014 forage seed weed control and copper fertility projects, as well as the Alternate Row / Companion Crop project.
      • Dr. Bill Biligetu, University of Saskatchewan will provide an update on the forage crop Plant Breeding program at the U of S.
      • Terry Kowalchuk, Provincial Forage Specialist, Saskatchewan Agriculture will provide an update on Sainfoin production.
      • During the SFSDC Annual General Meeting, growers can review the SFSDC activities and financials as well as have an opportunity for input into the Commission’s future plans.

December 2, 2014 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM
Twin Lakes Room, Evergreen Centre
Nipawin, Saskatchewan
Admission is free and refreshments will be available.

For more information, please contact the SFSDC at (306) 789-1958 or email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit the Events page.

Posted November 16, 2014


2014 Forage Seed Mini-Tour2014 Forage Seed Mini-Tour

The SFSDC held their annual field day on July 23, 2014 at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Farm south of Melfort, SK.

The forage seed mini-tour was held following the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) annual field day. Over 100 were in attendance for the NARF plot tours while 25 people stayed on for the forage seed mini-tour.

The mini-tour included the demonstration of the following research projects:

      • Evaluating the Placement of Companion Crops in Forage Seed Production; where perennial ryegrass and meadow bromegrass crop establishment is being compared under alternative planting methods with-or-without a wheat crop. 
      • Controlling Noxious Weeds and Improving Seed Quality in Established Legumes, and Controlling Noxious Weeds and Improving Seed Quality in Established Grasses; where registered herbicides have been applied to 9 crops to control hard-to-kill weeds and reduce the presence of restricted weed seeds in the sample.
      • Herbicide applications on 9 established forage crops with the goal to develop data for future Minor Use registrations.

SFSDC would like to thank Stu Brandt and the NARF crew for their efforts and expertise with the research projects. Funding for the demonstration projects was received from the ADOPT initiative under the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement. We would also like to thank Dow Agrosciences, NuFarm Agriculture, Syngenta Canada, Bayer Cropscience, DuPont Canada and BASF Canada for providing herbicides for the trials as well as Pickseed Canada for supplying the seed. Special thanks go to BASF Canada who also contributed funding for the Minor Use project.

For more information about current or past research projects, please look under Research.

Posted August 16, 2014


Canadian Seed Sector Profile

Canada is recognized worldwide as a leading producer, processor and exporter of high-quality seed for a wide range of crops. It is a diverse sector that contributes billions to the Canadian economy and provides jobs for thousands. It is an innovation-focused industry that utilizes complex technologies with millions invested annually in seed research and development.

This report is an overview of the seed industry in Canada, providing a clear picture of how it is structured and its impact on the Canadian economy.

Click here to see the full report.

Posted August 16, 2014


Red Clover Casebearer

The Clover Casebearer Research Project carried out at the University of Alberta was partially funded by Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission for 3 years. The three-chapter Final Report is now available. Please see the Chapter 1 abstract below.

Final Report: Development of pheromone-based mating disruption to control the red clover casebearer. Project Team Leader: Dr. Maya Evenden. Project Team Members: Jennifer Otani, Calvin Yoder, Boyd Mori. April 27, 2014

Abstract
The red clover casebearer, Coleophora deauratella Leinig and Zeller (Lepidoptera:Coleophoridae) is a major pest of red clover (Trifolium pratense L.) grown for seed in and parts of Europe. The efficacy and mechanisms of communication disruption were in small plot trials (0.25 ha) with twist-tie dispensers loaded with either the complete pheromone blend (10:1 ratio of (Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate to (Z)-5-dodecenyl acetate) unattractive major component alone ((Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate). Both formulations reduced C. deauratella orientation to pheromone traps (>99.6%). Interestingly, the unattractive component reduced trap capture to a greater degree than the complete blend. In communication disruption-treated plots, males oriented to dispensers that release the complete pheromone but not the major component. In the laboratory, male C. deauratella antennae became measured by electroantennograms conducted 5 minutes after pre-exposure to either the blend or the major component for 1 hour. Adaptation due to pre-exposure to either formulation resulted in a shift in the pheromone response threshold, antennae from pre-exposed moths responded to a greater degree to high pheromone stimuli dosages (5-50 μg) compared untreated control moths. Antennae from moths held in clean air for 24 hours after pre recovered and responded similarly to pheromone stimuli as antennae from control moths. results suggest that both formulations have the potential to cause communication disruption deauratella but the mechanisms of disruption differ between the two formulations.

Click here to see the full report.

Posted August 16, 2014


Forage Seed Response to Copper Fertilization

In June 2013, 0.22 lb/ac of foliar EDTA chelated copper was applied at the flag leaf to established timothy (3 locations) and hybrid bromegrass (1 location) on replicated miniplots in the Choiceland, Nipawin, and White Fox SK regions. At Site 1 (field with a history of copper fertilizer application) seed yield of timothy did not increase when NARF Copper Hybrid bromecopper was applied. At two other sites copper fertilization increased seed yield of timothy by 20 and 29 per cent. At Site 4 seed yield of hybrid bromegrass increased by 30 per cent. The three sites where copper increased the yield had no known history of copper application. Statistical analyses of individual sites did not reveal significant differences; however a combined analysis of the three sites with no known history of copper fertilization indicated that the copper response was significant.

These results suggest that low seed yield with forage grasses may reflect copper deficiencies. Forage seed growers who suspect copper deficiencies should consider applying copper to test strips in their fields to verify both the presence and magnitude of responses.

Based on 9.5 per cent EDTA chelated copper priced at $9/L, the cost of 0.22 lb/ac would be about $9.50/ac. With typical yields of 250 lb/ac for hybrid bromegrass and 300 lb/ac for timothy, the resulting yield increases in three of these sites provided positive economic returns.  

These results show that application of foliar EDTA chelated copper at relatively low rates can be effective at correcting deficiencies. Applying foliar copper to miniplots and comparing yield to adjacent untreated areas is an effective way of identifying where copper applications may be economic.

SFSDC wishes to acknowledge the efforts and expertise of Stu Brandt, Dr. Sukhdev Malhi and the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation as well as Clayton Myhre, Pickseed Canada in carrying out this project. To look at the full research project report, please click on Research on the website menu and look under Past Research for “Forage Seed Response to Copper Fertilization”.

Posted March 27, 2014


Herbicide Screening for Seed Forages in Establishment Year

Weed control is critical in the establishment year for forages grown for seed production. With that in mind, in the spring of 2013, we initiated a research trial at the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation near Melfort, SK to identify herbicides that provide adequate weed control while posing acceptable risk of crop damage for selected forage species. These species included grasses; hybrid bromegrass, timothy, perennial ryegrass, slender wheatgrass and tall fescue as well as forage legumes; red clover, alsikeForage Seed Herbicide Trials clover, sweet clover, cicer milkvetch and birdsfoot trefoil. A secondary objective was to provide data on herbicide tolerance that can be used to support minor use registrations for herbicides found to have acceptable crop tolerance.

Herbicide treatments were applied in a 4 replicate randomized complete block design, with an untreated check along with a full recommended rate plus a 2X rate (to simulate what might happen where sprayer overlaps occur) for each herbicide by crop combination. On July 4 herbicides were applied to perennial ryegrass, and other grass species were treated July 8, while all forage legume species were treated either July 9 or 10.

Despite rather intense weed competition, we were able to identify numerous crop – herbicide combinations that held potential for minor use registration on nine of the ten forage species evaluated. It should be noted that the data is for a single year at a single site. Under different climatic conditions, crop damage or weed control effectiveness could vary. For this reason, additional crop tolerance trials are needed to validate results obtained to date. In addition to meeting these objectives, we have established additional area to accommodate trials in 2014 on established forages.

For more information about this research project, please click on Research on the website menu and look under Past Research for “Herbicide Screening for Seed Forages in Establishment Year”.

Posted March 27, 2014


New Display Banner and Brochure for SFSDC

tradeshow bannerSFSDC has developed a new display banner and revised their information brochure. Working with the Saskatchewan Ministry of ASFSDC brochuregriculture, the Commission received funding provided through Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative for these two projects. 

The display banner will be used to promote the forage seed industry at trade shows, field days and grower meetings. It will also be used to raise awareness that SFSDC is using growers’ levy funds to carry out research and promotion of forage seed. This is the first time SFSDC has had a display.

The brochure will provide fresh new material to be used in combination with the display banner at meetings and trade shows. It also provides an excellent explanation of the activities and importance of the Commission to growers and other members of the industry. The previous brochure was published in 2005.

Posted March 27, 2014


Forage Seed Information Workshop

The Forage Seed Grower Workshop was held on December 5, 2013 in Nipawin, SK with presentations by:

Nicole Anderson, Oregon State University, provided an overview of the large forage seed industry in the Willamette Valley in Oregon. Production of many crops including white clover, annual ryegrass, perennial ryegrass, tall fescue, red clover and others occurs where they receive 50-80 inches of rainfall and experience only a couple of frosts each year. Yields range from 1,500-2,500 lb/ac of tall fescue and red clover of 800-900 lb/ac. Oregon banned field burning in 2009 and this has led to the increased use of fertilizer to compensate for the removal of nutrients with the straw, as well as more herbicides and intensive tillage to deal with weeds and slugs. Researchers in Oregon are currently looking at soil fertility, plant growth regulators in red clover, perennial ryegrass and tall fescue, as well as disease and insect control. Nicole Anderson’s travel expenses were covered by funding provided through Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial-initiative.

Nils Yannikos, University of Saskatchewan, provided an excellent preliminary report on their project on Enhancing Nitrogen Use Efficiency in forage grass seed crops. Using nitrification and volatilization inhibitors, they are looking to improve established grass seed yields using nitrogen fertilizer while reducing emissions. The results are promising.

Stu Brandt, Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation, reviewed the 2013 forage seed weed control and copper fertility projects funded by SFSDC. He described the 10 crops being tested and the initial herbicide tolerance and weed control results. Stu also outlined the preliminary results of the copper fertilizer strip trials where a yield response was noted in established timothy and bromegrass crops.

Dr. Bruce Coulman, University of Saskatchewan, brought us up to date on the hiring of the new forage crop Plant Breeder at the University. Their goal is to have the person in place by May 1, 2014.

David Wong, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, joined the meeting by webcast to speak on the forage seed market. David gave an excellent review of the major forage seed crop prices, inventories, exports and outlook. His conclusions noted, “Low inventories + Lack of acres = Very good price projections in the very near future. But remember, grow a quality product... in the grass and legume seed business, Quality always Sells.”

Workshop 2013

 









Posted January 21, 2014


Annual General Meeting – Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission – December 5, 2013

David Maxwell, Chair and Ray McVicar, Executive Director provided reports on the Commission’s activities. The Audited Financial Report for 2012-2013 was reviewed and the 2013-2014 Budget was presented by Marcel Enns, Treasurer. Milton & Associates, Regina, SK was appointed as Auditor for 2013-2014.
Highlights of 2012-2013 included:

      • A decrease in both the levy contributed ($35,937) to the SFSDC and the number of levy payers (154). Higher prices for canola and wheat continued to pressure forage seed acres and the early winter of 2012 postponed harvest of some red clover crops. Many forage seed prices improved this year and inventory of most species is low, so we believe the industry is on the move upward.  

      • A total of 2,471,200 kg of forage seed (excluding alfalfa seed) was purchased from Saskatchewan growers in 2012-2013 with a value of $5,140,500.

      • Provided $1,000 to University of Alberta for research on red clover casebearer, and continued to monitor Dr. Fran Walley’s Nitrogen Use Efficiency project with the University of Saskatchewan.

      • Held summer field days at Carrot River in 2012 and Melfort in 2013.

      • Initiated the research program with the Northeast Agriculture Research Foundation (NARF) at Melfort SK to look at herbicide tolerance and copper fertility. Plans are in place to expand this partnership in 2014 with funds from the Saskatchewan Agriculture ADOPT program.

      • Joined the Saskatchewan Forage Network to work toward increased research on forage seed crops. SFSDC pledged $5,000 per year for three years, and the Network has pledged a total of $43,000 per year, towards Masters or Post-Doctorate student projects on forage research to start in 2014.

Thank you to our speakers and those who attended the Workshop and AGM, as well as our levy payers and forage seed buyers for their support of the Commission’s activities. 

Posted January 21, 2014


Forage Seed Information Workshop – December 5, 2013

Join us at our Grower Information Workshop and Annual General Meeting!!Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission is pleased to announce that Nicole Anderson, Assistant Professor with Oregon State University will provide a presentation at the upcoming Forage Seed Grower Workshop on December 5, 2013 in Nipawin Saskatchewan.

Oregon is home to the largest forage seed industry in North America with annual sales of about $400 Million. Ms. Anderson is a specialist in forage seed research and extension in Oregon. She will discuss the current research occurring in her area as well as provide an update on trends and issues in the Oregon forage seed industry.

Anderson Nicole

 

 

 

 

 

Nicole Anderson
Asst Professor, Field Crops, Oregon SU

Ms. Anderson’s recent projects include:

      • Effect of Foliar Applications of Plant Growth Regulator on Red Clover Seed Crops;
      • Effects of Fungicides Applied at Two Timings on Seed Yield in Tall Fescue;
      • Evaluation of Insecticides for Management of Clover Crown Borer in Red Clover Seed; and
      • Bumble Bee Diversity, Abundance, and Pollination in Crimson Clover and Hairy Vetch.

Dr. Fran Walley, University of Saskatchewan, will present initial results from her research project on Enhancing Nitrogen Use Efficiency in forage grass seed crops.

Stu Brandt, Manager, Northeast Agricultural Research Foundation will review the 2013 forage seed weed control and copper fertility projects.

Dr. Bruce Coulman, U of S will provide an update on the new Plant Breeder Position.

David Wong, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development will speak on the Forage Seed Market Update via webcast.

At the SFSDC Annual General Meeting, growers can review the SFSDC financials and activities as well as have the opportunity for input into future plans.

December 5, 2013 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM
Jackpine Room, Evergreen Centre
Nipawin, Saskatchewan

Admission is free and refreshments will be available.  
For more information, please contact the SFSDC at (306) 789-1958 or email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit the website at www.skforageseeddc.com.

Funding provided through Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial-initiative. 

Posted November 14, 2013


Forage Seed Information Workshop – December 5, 2013

The Forage Seed Grower Information Workshop will be hosted by the Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission on Thursday, December 5, 2013. The event will be held in the Jackpine Room of the Evergreen Centre in Nipawin, SK from 1PM to 4:30 PM.

Presentations will be provided on:

      • Nitrogen Use Efficiency Research - Dr. Fran Walley, University of Saskatchewan
      • Forage Seed Research - Weed Control and Copper Fertility - Stu Brandt, NARF
      • Plant Breeder Position at U of S - Dr. Bruce Coulman, University of Saskatchewan
      • International Speaker on Forage Seed Research - TBA
      • Forage Seed Market Update Webcast - David Wong, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development

No admission charge. Refreshments provided.

For more information: Telephone SFSDC at 306-789-1958

Or email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Posted November 5, 2013


Annual General Meeting – Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission – December 5, 2013

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC) Annual General Meeting will be held on Thursday, December 5, 2013 in the Jackpine Room of the Evergreen Centre in Nipawin, SK.

The AGM will be included in the Forage Seed Grower Information Workshop being held from 1 PM to 4:30 PM.

Presentations during the AGM will include:

      • Chairman’s Report
      • Executive Director’s Report
      • Financial Statements for 2012 – 2013
      • Research Program Update
      • Planned Programs and Activities for the Commission
      • Budget for 2013 - 2014

Please attend the meeting to provide your advice and input to the activities of the SFSDC.

Posted November 5, 2013


Forage Seed Research Field Day – July 24, 2013

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC) field day was held as part of the Northeast Agricultural Research Foundation (NARF) field day on July 24, 2013. Over 150 people attended the field day south of Melfort SK at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Station. SFSDC joined in the field day, providing an explanation of the current trials at Melfort, and an overview of the Commission and its research program. Representatives of the University of Saskatchewan provided an update on their ongoing research project looking into nitrogen use in forage seed grass crops. BASF Canada gave us an update on their crop protection products for use in forage crops.  

SFSDC would like to thank Stu Brandt and Brett Mollison of NARF for their efforts and expertise with the research projects. We would like to thank Dow Agrosciences, NuFarm Agriculture, Bayer Cropscience and BASF Canada for providing herbicides for the trials as well as Pickseed Canada for supplying the seed. Special thanks go to BASF Canada who also contributed funding for this project.

SFSDC Field Day 2013

SFSDC Field Day 2013

For more information about the SFSDC Research Program and reports of past projects, check out the RESEARCH section of this website.

Posted August 22, 2013


Pickseed Canada Sold to DLF

http://www.dlf.com/upload/press_release_pickseed_and_dlf_22072013a.pdf

Posted August 22, 2013


New Forage Research Chair at University of Saskatchewan

http://www.gov.sk.ca/news?newsId=33443d6c-e772-47bc-8be4-d6a13a82787a

Posted August 22, 2013


More Forage Seed Research

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission and the NorthEast Agricultural Research Foundation (NARF) are making plans to establish 10 forage seed crops at the NARF site near Melfort SK in 2013.  In this establishment year, a number of crop protection products will be applied to the seedling stands with the goal to develop crop tolerance data.  The 10 crops will be maintained for a number of years providing the opportunity to test products on established forage seed crops.  These plans will also provide the opportunity to demonstrate forage seed crops and technologies to growers in Saskatchewan at summer field days in 2013 and in future years. 

The date for the 2013 summer field day will be posted on the website as soon as it is known, or email the SFSDC office at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for more information.

Posted April 16, 2013


Annual General Meeting and Information Session

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC) Annual General Meeting and Information Session were held in Nipawin, SK on December 5, 2012.  

Over 40 people were in attendance to hear presentations on the following topics: 

      • SFSDC Research Project Results
      • Nitrogen Use Research in Forage Seed Crops - Dr. Fran Walley, University of Saskatchewan
      • Northeast Agricultural Research Foundation - Stu Brandt, NARF
      • Insect Pest Update - Scott Hartley, Provincial Entomologist, Saskatchewan Agriculture
      • Forage Seed Market Update and Outlook– Gerry Duynisveld, Northstar Seed Ltd.  

During the Annual General Meeting, David Maxwell, Chair and Ray McVicar, Executive Director provided reports on the Commission’s activities.  The Audited Financial Report for 2011-2012 was reviewed and the 2012-2013 Budget was presented by Marcel Enns, Treasurer.  Milton & Associates, Regina, SK was appointed as Auditor for 2012-2013.
Highlights of the 2011-2012 fiscal year included:

      • The SFSDC levy increased to $46,382 and the number of levy payers also increased to 175.  This was the first increase in both numbers in recent years. 
      • The SFSDC contributed to the following research projects in 2011-2012: Fertilizing Forage Grasses for Seed Production (continued); Pod Sealant Technology in Trefoil Seed Production (completed); Bromegrass Seed Midge Control (continued); Fungicides for Use in Forage Seed Grasses (started); provided $4,000 toward Dr. Fran Walley’s Nitrogen Use Efficiency project with the University of Saskatchewan; and provided $1,000 to University of Alberta for research on red clover casebearer.
      • The Commission’s website was developed and launched and can be viewed at http://skforageseeddc.com

Thank you to all of our speakers and those who attended the meeting, as well as the levy payers and forage seed buyers for their support of the Commission’s activities.

Posted January 17, 2013


Forage Seed Producer Information Day & Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission Annual Meeting

Wednesday, December 5, 2012  1:30 – 4:30 PM
Nipawin Evergreen Centre – ProShop Room
Nipawin, Saskatchewan

      • Discussion on latest Forage Seed Research
      • Forage Seed Market Information and Outlook

No admission charge.  Refreshments provided
For more information: Phone (306) 789-1958
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Website: www.skforageseeddc.com

Posted October 18, 2012


Forage Seed Research Field Day

The 2012 Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC) research field day was held on July 25, 2012 in the Carrot River, SK area. 

Thank you to AG-Vision Seeds Ltd. for their hospitality in providing our place to meet and for the snack Field Day 2012and tour of their seed processing facility.  Other much appreciated cooperation was provided by PICKSEED for lining up three of our tour sites, and by our site cooperators: Loren Yurkowki, Marcel Enns, Allan Stewart and Hans Meyer.

There were 28 people in attendance for this year’s research field day.  Although rain threatened to wash out the field portion of the tour, those in attendance decided to chance the roads and go look at some plots.  With almost 3½ inches of rain falling on three of our five planned sites during the previous night, it was decided to travel to the area that received less rain to look at two sites in the field and discuss the other sites at the AG-Vision Seeds Ltd. facility.

Field Day Highlights included:
•    Dr. Julie Soroka, Research Scientist – Entomology, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saskatoon provided a description of the red clover casebearer monitoring project being carried out across the Prairies.  SFSDC is contributing $1,000 per year for three years toward this project.  Dr. Soroka also provided an overview of other insect pests causing problems in crops in 2012 in northeast Saskatchewan including: lesser clover leaf weevil, alfalfa weevil, true armyworm on timothy and cereals, and swede midge on canola. 

•    The SFSDC carried out preliminary research work on bromegrass seed midge in 2012.  A project site was toured, where Dr. Soroka provided background information on the insect pest and the two parasitic wasps that infest the midge.  The project involves monitoring the midge and determining the best timing for, and effectiveness of, insecticide application.  Insecticide was applied at midge emergence (heading of the bromegrass) and samples of midge and wasps were collected at 5 different times.  Seed shattering, yield and seed quality will be measured.  Clayton Myhre and Rick Cherepuschak led the discussion of the project. 

•    Dr. Bruce Coulman, Department Head of Plant Sciences, U of S provided an overview of forage seed researchers in Western Canada and the additional areas of research needed to advance the forage industry.  Dr. Coulman also talked about the development of hybrid bromegrass under his research program, and sainfoin and alfalfa research. 

•    Drs. Fran Walley and Richard Farrell, Professors Soil Sciences, U of S discussed their upcoming research project on fertility in forage grass seed production.  SFSDC has contributed $4,000 to this project.  Urease nitrification inhibitors will be used to attempt to improve the efficiency of nitrogen fertilizer applications in forage grasses and greenhouse gas emissions will also be monitored. 

•    Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture provided funding to test fungicides for leaf disease control in grasses grown for seed.  The site was too wet to visit on the tour, but the project was described when the group met at AG-Vision Seeds Ltd.  Fungicides were applied on two sites of perennial ryegrass and one site of timothy at early heading.  Leaf diseases were monitored and measured as per cent leaf infection on the flag leaf just prior to and two weeks after application.  Plant diseases being monitored in timothy are purple eyespot and powdery mildew, while the plant diseases being monitored in perennial ryegrass are rust and powdery mildew. Seed yield and quality will be determined. 
The project was supported by the Agricultural Demonstration of Practices and Technologies (ADOPT) initiative under the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward bi-lateral agreement.

•    Two other sites were described by Norm Klemmer of AG-Vision Seeds Ltd.  They included a field of alsike clover and a field of single cut red clover.  A great discussion was held on the features of these crops and on harvest aids and options for harvesting. 

•    The day wrapped up with a tour of the processing plant and warehouse facilities of AG-Vision Seeds Ltd. 

Thank you to all who attended and helped at the field day.  Let’s hope for some more sunny weather next year!!

Posted October 18, 2012


New Executive Director for SFSDC

The Saskatchewan Forage Seed Development Commission (SFSDC) is excited to have a new Executive Director, Ray McVicar.

Ray comes with more than 33 years of professional experience with crop production technology including extension, crop research and innovation, as well as pest and pesticide management. He has been employed in both government and industry and for the last 20 years has worked for Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture with grower boards, associations, committees and trade missions.

Ray brings with him a wealth of knowledge of government structures, legislation and decision making. His assistance in the development of the Canaryseed Development Commission and Mustard Growers Association brings great knowledge to the SFSDC.

The board is looking forward to working with Ray and we welcome him to SFSDC.

Please contact him at:
Ray McVicar
2782 Aster Cres
Regina, SK  S4V 1Z9
Ph: (306) 789-1958


Thank you for all your and support in the past,
Nancy Johns
Past Executive Director

Posted March 13, 2012

Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 June 2017 20:07