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NOTICE: Canadian Agri-Science Cluster for Horticulture and National Greenhouse Industry Priorities - 2nd Call

The Office of Research Services has received the following information which we are forwarding to our e-mail list members:

NOTICE: Canadian Agri-Science Cluster for Horticulture and National Greenhouse Industry Priorities – 2nd Call


The Canadian Horticultural Council is currently exploring the opportunity to establish a third Agri-Science Cluster under the federal government’s upcoming agricultural policy framework for 2018-2023.


The purpose of the program is to help industry-led agricultural organizations pull together national scientific and technical resources to establish clusters in support of innovation and research. Projects for the program must focus on the pre-commercialization development of new agri products, practices and processes in Canada that will make agriculture more profitable and competitive.


To date, the Canadian Horticultural Council (CHC) has undertaken a number of activities to gather input from members, including commodity groups establishing their national research and innovation strategies and priorities in collaboration with their value chain partners. CHC previously sent out a Notice for EOIs in February, and after review by industry stakeholders, we are putting out a 2nd call.


At this time, we are seeking Expressions of Interest from researchers in Canada who would like to participate in the Canadian Agri-Science Cluster for Horticulture 3 in the following areas of priority for the greenhouse industry, particularly in the areas of Labour and Energy & Efficiency.



Key Priority Area

Strategic Outcome

Investment Priorities

Pest Management


Research and innovations in pest management initiatives enable us to detect invasive pests and diseases before they becomes established, resulting in less pesticide use, a reduced footprint and increasing consumer confidence.

We have an improved and more responsive regulatory framework for pesticides, and bio-controls for emerging invasive pests and diseases, relative to trading partners.

-       Photo sensing and scouting technologies

-       Identification of domestic beneficial species

-       Cultural practices to reduce pest and disease pressure



Increased automation and mechanization of certain production tasks (pickers) will have changed the worker type from labourer to highly skilled worker. Data systems that register input needs, inform inventory and order products have increased need for technology and data systems savvy workers who have displaced labourers who have been replaced by full time highly skilled workers. Training programs have attracted upper/middle production management graduates to work in production greenhouses.

-         Education/training programs

-         Mechanization for certain production tasks

-         Integrated data systems to increase farm management efficiencies (at the production level)

Energy and Efficiency

Reduction in traditional carbon-based fuels, greater efficiencies from alternate fuel sources, and improved artificial lighting (LED), informed by producer knowledge have resulted in greater energy efficiency and higher quality production.

-         carbon emission reduction

-         precision agriculture

-         less energy intensive crops


Production Outcomes

Initiatives to explore enhanced growing methods have resulted in enhanced yields, lower production costs, higher quality and more consistent products and sustainable production methods that have a positive impact on the environment.

-         Water efficiencies

-         Growing methods (i.e.: year round production, sap analysis, fertilization, etc.)

-         Seed and variety trials

-         Post-harvest management

Consumer Preferences

We will have completed institutional research which has given us the facts around our production methods and demonstrates to the public the benefits of greenhouse products, thereby increasing demand and acceptance


-          Consumer research related to greenhouse product attributes, taste preferences, etc.

-          Product analysis (i.e.: residue testing, comparative nutrient analysis, etc.)

-          Environmental impact studies

Enabling Strategy:

Knowledge Collection, Translation and Transfer


National collaboration with growers, universities and government researchers has resulted in

·         Coordination of research;

·         Translation of results;

·         Transfer of knowledge and technologies for grower use; and

·         High adoption rates by industry.

-          Training programs

-          KT Coordinator

-          Communications and dissemination strategies




Please complete the attached Expressions of Interest Form and return it to Amy Argentino by end of business April 27, via email to: aargentino@hortcouncil.ca with the subject line: Greenhouse – _expression_ of Interest.


All expressions of interest will be reviewed by the greenhouse commodity group and I will follow up directly with those whom industry would like to receive a full proposal from.


If I have omitted anyone in this email distribution that you believe should receive this, please forward it to them.


If you require any assistance in preparing your EOI or have any questions regarding the Cluster application process, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Thank you in advance,




Amy Argentino
Manager, Projects and Programs / Gestionnairre, projets and programmes
Canadian Horticultural Council / Conseil canadien de l'horticulture
2200 promenade Prince of Wales Drive

Suite 102
Ottawa, ON  K2E 6Z9
T. 613 226 4880
(ext. 208)
F. 613 226 4497


Attachment: CHC Agri-Science Cluster for Horticulture - EOI Form.docx
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