Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada scientist named Special Ambassador by United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization

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The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (UN FAO) has appointed Dr. Joyce Boye 'Special Ambassador for North America for the 2016 International Year of Pulses (IYP2016)'.

Dr. Boye is Director of Research, Development and Technology (RDT) for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) research centres in British Columbia. She has expertise on plant proteins and their importance in helping to improve human health and nutrition. Pulse crops - which include lentils, chickpeas, dried beans and dried peas - are a great source of vegetable protein, and are rich in nutrients!

"This is truly an honour for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Only a few decades ago, Canada had very limited pulse production; now, thanks to research, we have a history of success that has culminated in this Year of Pulses! This year will be a springboard for the development of new products."

- Joyce Boye, RDT Director, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

In his nomination letter, FAO Director General José Graziano da Silva explained that Dr. Boye's knowledge, commitment, and influence would help promote the message that increased consumption of pulses can improve the quality of people’s diets and their overall health, and send a clear message to the international community on the potential of pulses to improve food security.

"As IYP2016 ambassador, Dr. Boye will help pursue one of the greatest collective achievements of mankind: the establishment of the 'Zero Hunger' generation."

- José Graziano da Silva, FAO Director General

Through her role as Special Ambassador, Dr. Boye will work to increase awareness of the ways pulses can benefit the environment, food security, and nutrition:

  • Pulses have nitrogen-fixing qualities that increase soil health and they require less water compared to other crops, making them a win for the environment;
  • As a dried product, their reduced weight makes them more affordable to ship to markets. They can also be stored for long periods and used as needed, increasing food security;
  • Pulses are an affordable source of vegetable protein, vitamins, and nutrients that can help improve the quality of our growing global population's diet.

In her mind, this is only the beginning for a group of crops with much potential to feed the world.

We invite you to visit AAFC’s 2016 International Year of Pulses page and follow us on Twitter (@AAFC_Canada), Facebook (@CanadianAgriculture) and YouTube (AgricultureCanadaEng) to get the latest IYP news.

Key Messages

  • AAFC's Dr. Joyce Boye has been named UN FAO Special Ambassador for North America for the International Year of Pulses 2016.
  • Through her new role, Dr. Boye will promote the benefits of pulses for the environment, food security, and human nutrition.

Photo gallery

Portrait photo of Dr. Joyce Boye, sitting, wearing a blue jacket and white shirt.
Dr. Joyce Boye has done extensive work with proteins from soybeans, peas, lentils, chickpeas, beans, canola and hemp.
Two cupped hands hold a pile of yellow lentils over a bowl full of more yellow lentils.
Pulses, what a great story!

Related information

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