Agassiz Research and Development Centre
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
6947 Highway 7
Post Office Box 1000
Agassiz, British Columbia
Search Scientific Staff and Expertise (Agassiz Research and Development Centre) to learn more about the expertise of agricultural scientists working at this centre, and to find a list of their research publications.
The Agassiz Research and Development Centre was established by the Government of Canada under The Experimental Farm Station Act in 1886. The Centre consists of two independent research sites: Agassiz and Summerland. It is also associated with a satellite location—the Clearbrook sub-station, located 50 kilometres away in Abbotsford, British Columbia.
The scientific research of the Agassiz Research and Development Centre addresses national agricultural priorities in the areas of horticultural and field crop production and protection. These priorities include helping to adapt and remain competitive in domestic and global markets. The research mainly focuses on peri-urban agriculture, which seeks to improve understanding of the flows, interactions and impacts of agriculture systems within densely populated regions.
Facilities at the Agassiz Research and Development Centre include:
- Research greenhouses
- Weather station (data recording since 1889)
- Heritage Stone Barn (built in 1893)
- Modern laboratory and office complex utilizing geothermal storage for heating and cooling
- Cell culture laboratory
- DNA analyzer
- Geographic Information System (GIS) laboratories
- Insect rearing rooms
- Drainage lysimeter
Current research activities
Research for healthier crops
- Studying soil biochemistry and fertility, soil microbiology, soil degradation and environmental quality.
- Conducting research on insect pest control measures for vegetables, berries and greenhouse vegetables.
- Assessing blueberry, strawberry and raspberry varieties that adapt well to Canada's Pacific Northwest, with emphasis on natural disease and insect resistance.
- Conducting research on innovative production and post-harvest methods to improve the quality of berries and greenhouse vegetables.
- Investigating chemical controls, for short term use, in small-scale production crops (minor use pesticides).
Innovative solutions for health and wellness
- Conducting research on greenhouse vegetables to enhance antioxidant content for human health; studying ways to increase the tolerance of these vegetables to low storage temperatures and to prolong their shelf life.
New and improved quality for food products
- Determining factors affecting shelf life and quality of fruit and vegetable products destined for fresh consumption.
Results of our research
Agro-ecosystem productivity and health
- Developed a new watering technique that accurately administers water in real time for more efficient production of greenhouse vegetables and ornamentals crops. This has led to the development and adoption of advanced irrigation control systems.
- Developed a novel online computer model for farmers and experts that provides real time decision support for precise management of nitrogen.
- Increased nitrogen and phosphorous efficiency and reduced environmental impact of dairy farming through the novel dual manure stream concepts for dairy farm cropping systems
- Introduced over ten new small fruit varieties (increased yield, shelf life, crop persistence), widely adopted by domestic and international industry.
- Developed two new biological control agents for greenhouse vegetables - improved production and reduced pesticide use.
- Reduced the impact of economically important pests through discoveries in pheromone biology and genomics of cranberry tipworm and blueberry gall midge.
- Improved control of wireworms and reduced the use of environmentally adverse pesticides with innovative integrated pest management programs.
- Processing the registration of two new bio-pesticides to control soil pests (including wireworms) and cabbage loopers.
- Contributed to over 200 new minor use pesticide registrations through field trials of various pesticides, herbicides, growth regulators for horticultural crop protection in British Columbia over the past ten years.
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