Brandon Research and Development Centre
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
2701 Grand Valley Road,
P.O. Box 1000A, Rural Route #3
Search Scientific Staff and Expertise (Brandon 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 Brandon Research and Development Centre is one of the original five experimental farms established by the Government of Canada in 1886 under The Experimental Farm Station Act.
There are three satellite locations associated with the Centre:
- the Cereal Quality Lab in Winnipeg
- the Canada-Manitoba-Crop Diversification Centre in Carberry
- the Canada-Manitoba Crop Diversification Centre in Portage la Prairie
The Brandon Research and Development Centre conducts research in two key areas:
- Sustainable and Profitable Agri-systems and Agroecosystem Productivity and Health for the prairie climate focusing on systems which are economically viable and environmentally sound
- Cereal (wheat, barley, and oats) germplasm enhancement
Facilities at the Brandon Research and Development Centre
- Irrigation, greenhouse and phytotron facilities
- Land base of 890 hectares plus 100 hectares leased
- Facilities and equipment for seeding, management harvesting, grain drying and handling of seeds and biomass of grains and oilseeds
- Unique Cereal quality lab in support of the breeding programs
- Co-located with the
- Canadian Food Inspection Agency
- Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives
Current research activities
- Conducting research on manure management methods, including composting and rates of application to land, that permit producers to capture its beneficial nutrient properties as a fertilizer material, while avoiding, or minimizing, nutrient losses from the soil and greenhouse gas emissions.
- Searching for innovative fertilizer management techniques that enable agricultural producers to avoid nutrient losses to the environment and maximize the efficient use of nutrients by crops.
- Advancing knowledge on soil processes, particularly those that control emission of greenhouse gases, sequestration of carbon in soil organic matter, replenishment of exhausted nutrient supplying capacity, and improvement of soil physical properties.
- Improving knowledge and understanding the effects of crop rotations and crop succession on carbon sequestration, of legume crop contributions to soil N accumulation plant diseases.
- Developed and used information management tools to support range and other resource management in agricultural landscapes.
- Applied research on the use of beetles to control leafy spurge.
- Developed an edge-of-field data capture tool to gather field scale agricultural information for use in landscape and watershed based resource management.
Farm Profitability through Innovative Systems
- Bred cereals (wheat, barley and oats) and researched new germplasm and varieties for western Canada that are more resistant to disease, have higher yield, better malting quality, and higher nutritive value for cattle and human consumption.
- Evaluating wheat, barley and oat lines for milling and baking quality, and barley malting quality. Studying system for improving efficient use of land and water resources, including crop rotations, nutrient application to soils (commercial fertilizers, animal wastes, and other sources), weather conditions within the crop canopy (micrometeorology), and plant biochemistry and physiology. Knowledge developed in these studies forms the basis of management practices that minimize production cost, minimize risks, and stabilize returns at the farm gate.
- Researching crop management methods that minimize the adverse effect of crop diseases through the adoption of crop rotations, and determining strategies to improve the efficient use of fungicides, or similar farm inputs.
Results of our research
Agro-ecosystem productivity and health
- Demonstrated new tools to help land managers assess agri-environmental resource management issues and adopt beneficial management practices.
- Improved and refined tools to use aerial and satellite imagery to classify land cover, evaluate riparian areas and measure soil moisture.
- Demonstrated grass alfalfa grazing system (low bloat risk) with improved animal gain (by 50 kilograms a hectare).
- Extended grazing systems using annual forages in mid-summer and crops such as small grains, Golden German millet, hairy vetch and forage brassicas.
- Classified Manitoba Rangeland: ecological sites based on geography, soil and topographical qualities; ideal reference plant community for each site.
- Improved nitrogen (N) effectiveness and reduced N losses.
- Improved phosphorus (P) management and reduced P loss from different forms and sources of nutrient (including compost/swine manure) on different cropping systems on the Prairies.
- Improved cadmium (Cd) control through crop management (organic nutrients, improved cultivars, reduced tillage and low Cd phosphorus fertilizers).
Cereal and pulses
- Released three two-row malting barley varieties and two forage barley varieties with improved resistance to Fusarium head blight.
- Released 24 wheat (some resistant to orange blossom wheat midge) and 5 oat varieties (some with improved resistance to crown rust disease).
- Developed selection techniques for low cadmium accumulating durum wheat cultivars, exempting Canada from trade restrictions due to high levels.
- Developed a molecular diagnostic technique to detect multiple Fusarium species causing root rot disease in soybean, pea and bean crops; identified a new Fusarium root rot pathogen of bean in Canada. This helps scientists diagnose crop problems and develop new disease-resistant crops.
- Customized production practices for Manitoba to improve profitability and management of environmental risks for high input crops such as potatoes.
- New Hope in the Fight to Protect Global Wheat Supply from Ug99 Stem Rust (2015-11-26)
- The Innovators (video) (2015-08-10)
- Soil Activity in Winter: Soil doesn't sleep under its blanket of snow (2015-07-30)
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