Such an interesting world we live in. The only thing we know for sure is that things will always change. Change can be uncomfortable, and maybe a little scary – but it also brings opportunity. In the bioscience industry, there is constant change: in the climate, in new ideas and in technology. Big data and digital technology are promising to disrupt the agrifood sector – we are already seeing an increase in automation, and artificial intelligence is on the edge of becoming reality. How this will affect human resources training and employment in the future is a big question that still needs to be addressed.

Changes in consumer trends also create both challenges and opportunities. An example is meat consumption. In North America and Europe, there is a trend towards reduced red meat consumption, and a move towards more plant proteins. On the flip side, there is a prediction that in Asia there will be more meat consumed as the middle class grows. Both of these trends would call for an increase in plant protein, which can be used both for food and livestock feed. The Canadian prairie region has a great opportunity to become the Canadian centre for plant protein, which will be the focus of the new federally funded pan-prairie supercluster, Protein Industries Canada.

I hope you enjoy the following articles. They cover a range of subjects and activities, within the province and beyond. For example, a review of the 2018 Agricultural Bioscience Industry Conference (ABIC) is included. In September, ABIC was held in China for the first time, and Ag-West staff attended to represent Saskatchewan’s bioscience cluster. On the local level, an article by POS Bio-Sciences talks about the company’s “venture into machine learning.”

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