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Organic Science Cluster III is a joint initiative led by the Organic Federation of Canada in collaboration with the Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada at Dalhousie University to serve the needs of Canada’s organic sector.


Issue 2020

Presenting the latest research in organic field crop production

Issue 2021

Presenting the latest research in organic horticulture.


The partners of the Organic Science Clsuter 3


The Organic Federation of Canada publishes a series of feature articles
to recognize the contributions of the Organic Science Cluster industry partners.


SeedChange - the science of seed selection with farmers  - Read more






Growing organic vegetables as an act of environmental stewardship [19:50]

We pay farmers to produce food, but we need farmers to be stewards of our global landscape’.

Sustainable vegetable production can shape the agricultural landscape: Sean Smukler, from UBC, is building an online tool to enhance nutrient management planning in vegetable production and to provide better stewardship of the land.

No time to listen?

You can read the interview with Dr. Smukler - click here





A tribute to Jennifer Mitchell Fetch: the patient art of organic oat breeding [17:53]

Armed with patience and a talent for fortune telling, Dr. Jennifer Mitchell Fetch, from AAFC, describes how, over 17 years of work, she has created two new oat cultivars selected to thrive under organic management: AAC Oravena and AAC Kongsore.  

No time to listen? You can read the interview with Dr Jennifer Mitchell Fetch - click here




Net GHG emissions of Canadian field crops: how well do organic crops perform? [25:38]

Food systems contribute a large share of global greenhouse gas emissions. But what about organic production systems?

Dr. Peter Tyedmers, from Dalhousie University, leads a valuable research activity to estimate the level of greenhouse gas emissions of Canadian organic field crop production systems. He invites all Canadian organic field crop farmers to join this research activity. 

No time to listen? You can read the interview with Dr Peter Tyedmers - click here

Nathan Pelletier, from UBC, participates to this research activity. He was interviewed by Jordan Marr [17:00] in November 2020.




Berry byproducts in poultry feed: an alternative to antibiotics? [20:40]

What if we could replace the antibiotics used in broiler production with berry products?

Dr. Moussa Diarra, from AAFC, has found exciting results in his OSC3 research activity when feeding organic cranberry and wild blueberry pomace to organic broiler chickens. 

No time to listen? You can read the interview with Dr Moussa Diarra - click here

Kelly Ross, from AAFC, participates to this research activity. She was interviewed by Jordan Marr [23:28] in November 2020.




Sourcing phosphorus from human wastewater to feed organic soils [12:14]

Phosphorus is an essential nutrient which is often in short supply on organic farms, particularly Prairie farms. Kimberley Schneider (University of Guelph) and her colleague Henry Wilson (AAFC) are conducting a unique research activity: using struvite, derived from wastewater, to address the phosphorus deficit in certain organically managed soils and to provide a renewable source of phosphorus. 

No time to listen? You can read the interview with Dr Schneider - click here


Flower Power: Attracting Pollinators and Beneficials in Field Crops [11:58]

Beneficial insects, such as pollinators, provide ecosystem services that can improve the sustainability of crop production. Jason Gibbs (from University of Manitoba) is measuring how strips of flowers can influence the abundance and diversity of beneficial insects on both organic and non-organic farms. He will evaluate how the change in beneficial organisms can enhance pollination and biological pest control in both organic and non-organic farms in Manitoba. 

No time to listen? You can read the interview with Dr Jason  Gibbs - click here




Best organic practices for enhancing vineyard soil health [23:35]

Organic wine is more and more popular.

Interviewed by Jordan Marr, Dr. Mehdi Sharifi, from AAFC, in partnership with Dr. Liette Vasseur, tests the combinations of cover crops, rootstocks, and irrigation for enhancing vineyard soil health, and thus grape production and quality.

No time to listen? You can read the interview with Dr. Sharifi - click here




Chandra Moffat - The entomologist focusing on the organic control of the spotted wing drosophila [43:37]

The spotted wing drosophila can cause important damages to small fruit!

As an entomologist involved in the research activity Ecological pest management for Spotted Wing Drosophila, Dr. Chandra Moffat, from AAFC,  speaks passionately about her role in the development of multiple strategies for the management of the spotted wing drosophila (‘fruit fly’), with a focus on organic methods of control. She was interviewed by Jordan Marr In November 2020.



The ecological challenge of controlling the pestilent wireworm [35:49]

Wireworms are subterranean larvae of agricultural crops that can seriously damage horticultural food crops.

Todd Kabaluk evaluates products and practices that maintain wireworms at levels acceptable for profitable production of smaller-scale horticultural food crops. He is interviewed by Jordan Marr.




English transcripts are available!




Ecological food sovereighty in cold countries

The fascinating yield of organic greenhouses [46:19]

Martine Dorais, a researcher at Laval University, has participated in 16 research activities within the Organic Science Clusters: 9 of these activities deal with greenhouse production.

She tells us about major advances in fertilization, substrates, lighting and effluent control in greenhouses and describes the greenhouse of her dreams, a zero-waste hybrid complex.

To listen (in French), click here!

To read English transcript, click here



Saponins for Controlling Pests in Greenhouses [24:13]

Dr. Simon Lachance, a researcher at the University of Guelph, is looking for biopesticides to control greenhouse pests. He is extracting saponins from greenhouse tomato crop residues to test the antifungal and insecticidal properties of this bioactive molecule, whose phytochemical potential is under-exploited in Ontario greenhouses. 

To listen (in French), click here!

To read English transcript, click here



The Bug War to Produce Organic Strawberries [33:03]

Caroline Provost and François Dumont, PhDs in biology at the Mirabel Agri-Food Research Centre, are experimenting with the use of the predatory bugs Nabis and Orius to eliminate the tarnished plant bug that ravages strawberry fields and reduce the use of synthetic pesticides that are not acceptable in organic strawberry production. Read more. 

To listen (in French), click here

To read the English transcript, click here



Young shoots in a flowery garden at the IRDA [21:25]

Sprouts are increasingly sought after by consumers: their flavour and freshness make them a food often consumed on a daily basis.

That's why an IRDA team led by Caroline Côté is looking into the production of organically grown shoots, young plants that pests appreciate as much as consumers. 

To listen (in French), click here

To read the English transcript, click here





Meet the scientists of the OSC3 - click here


The list of activities funded under the OSC3 - click here.


The Power of Partnership -Minister MacAulay announces the Organic Science Cluster 3 - click here.


The Organic Science Cluster - A Unique Cluster amomg Clusters - read more


© Organic Federation of Canada