The Diverse Field Crops Cluster (DFCC) focuses on research to benefit producers and industry. DFCC comprises a mix of small acreage crops grown across Canada: camelina, canary seed, flax, hemp, mustard, carinata, quinoa and sunflower. While the Covid-19 pandemic continued to cause some delays, many of DFCC’s research activities are on track to be completed by the fifth (and final) year of the program.

This fourth year once again illustrates researcher success and the importance of public/private partnerships and collaborations.

  • Research by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and NuSeed Canada scientists have resulted in the first commercial carinata hybrid, Nujet 400, being launched in Argentina, Uruguay and the United States in 2022.
  • University of Saskatchewan’s Crop Development Centre has developed a brown flax oilseed line that has been supported for registration in Canada. SaskFlax is the key industry partner.
  • AAFC has developed germplasm with increased tolerance to Group 2 herbicide Solo, in carinata and yellow mustards. This is the first step in development of herbicide tolerance in varieties and showcases the partnership between AAFC, NuSeed Canada and Mustard 21 Canada.
  • The nutritional quality and safety of hemp meal for dairy cows was demonstrated by Dr. Plaizier at the University of Manitoba, with support from Dairy Farmers of Manitoba. This information will be used to support Canadian Hemp Trade Alliance’s submission for regulatory approval by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.
  • Collaborations amongst AAFC, University of Guelph, Sask Food Centre and Mustard 21 have resulted in the development of fractionation processes for yellow mustard into protein, dietary fibre and gum products, and inclusion in high value foods.
  • Data from canine and equine studies with camelina oil conducted at the University of Guelph by Drs. Shoveller and Pearson demonstrate its safety and efficacy. Smart Earth Camelina is using this data to prepare submissions for regulatory approval in the United States.

As DFCC enters its last year, the seven crop sector members are preparing a second application as part of AAFC’s next agri-science program. The full submis­sion should be ready by late fall.

Ag-West Bio would like to thank all the crop sector members for their support of DFCC and look forward to continuing the successes of this first round.

Carol Ann Patterson, DFCC Project Manager


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