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AG e-news April 6, 2017

April 6, 2017 — 

News and events from the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, University of Manitoba.


Thursday, April 6 – An Advanced Plant Science Seminar will be held in the Carolyn Sifton Lecture Theatre, 130 Agriculture Building at 3:30 pm. Hassna Alkher, Ph.D. student, Department of Plant Science, will be presenting “Cross-pathogenicity of Phytophthora infestans Genotypes and Impact on their Interaction with Potato and Tomato”.  All are welcome to attend. Coffee at 3:00 pm in the Atrium.

Friday, April 7 – The Project in Agroecology (AGEC 4550) Final Oral Presentations will take place in 344 Ellis Building. These seminars describe the fourth-year thesis projects of the Agroecology students.  Each talk is a maximum of 15 minutes (13 minute target), followed by a 5-minute question period.  See topic list here. Pizza and refreshments following the seminars. Everyone welcome!

Tuesday, April 11 – A Department of Entomology Seminar will be presented by Dr. John Markham, Department of Biological Science, University of Manitoba, on “Niches in a haystack; determinants of plant community structure in tallgrass prairies”. Refreshments at 10:00 am, seminar begins at 10:10 am sharp in 220 Animal Science/Entomology Building.

Tuesday, April 11 – The Department of Human Nutritional Sciences presents a special seminar entitled “Examining the essentiality of maternal choline intake during early infant development” with Dr. Erin Lewis, Tufts University, to be held at 2:30 pm in Carolyn Sifton Lecture Theatre, 130 Agriculture Building. Refreshments will be served.

Thursday, April 13 – The Manitoba Institute of Agrologists will hold its 2017 Professional Development and Annual General Meeting at the William Glesby Centre, Portage la Prairie, Manitoba. More details and registration at

Wednesday, April 19 – The ninth and final seminar in the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences Seminar Series will be will be held at 3:30 pm in the Carolyn Sifton Lecture Theatre, Room 130 Agriculture Building.  Dr. Jason Gibbs, Department of Entomology, will present “Bees gone wild: The taxonomy, evolution, and ecology of the other 20,000 bees”.  Refreshments will be available at 3:00 pm in the Atrium. Everyone is welcome to attend.

April 20 and 22 – The Bruce D. Campbell Farm and Food Discovery Centre are hosting The Real Dirt on Farming Speaker Training Sessions. These are one-day training sessions geared towards farmers, agri-food industry professionals, and farmers’ market vendors interested in learning how to give effective presentations and speak to non-farmers about agriculture. For more details visit

April 24-26 – The Agricultural Institute of Canada will be holding its 2017 conference in Winnipeg. The theme is “Agricultural Innovation in a Changing Environment”. The conference will foster important discussions among policy makers, industry stakeholders, entrepreneurs and the research community about agriculture’s impact on the environment in a changing climate. AIC 2017 will also showcase world-class innovative research taking place across Canada and explore how green growth in the sector can build on a strong scientific, evidence-based foundation. Visit to stay up to date.

Friday, May 5MCWESTT 2017, a local, one-day conference dedicated to connecting women in engineering, science, trades, and technology, and empowering them to Create, Foster, and Lead. Master of Ceremonies for the day will be Winnipeg based comedian Dana Smith, and keynote speakers include Susan Auch, Shari Graydon and Sarah Neville. Register at  For the first time ever, MCWESTT 2017 is offering a full day pre-conference workshop on Thursday, May 4. The WinSETT Effective Communication workshop will be facilitated by Edna Dach with guest speakers Trish Jordan and Dawn Nedohin-Macek. Thanks to the generous partnership of the NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering – Prairies, this workshop is available at a significantly discounted rate of only $75, exclusively for our conference participants. Be sure to register early as the workshop is limited to only 30 participants.

May 10-11 – A National Microbiome Workshop on “Statistical Challenges and Opportunities for the Analysis of Microbiome Data”will take place in Winnipeg at the Apotex Building, 750 McDermot Ave, University of Manitoba. Co-organized by Ehsan Khafipour, Animal Science, the event will feature a number of national and international speakers who are leading the research in this field. The workshop is free of charge to accommodate attendance of researchers and highly qualified personnel but there is a registration deadline of May 1. For more information please visit

September 25-28 – The Agricultural Bioscience International Conference is coming to Winnipeg! Themed “Solutions Start Here”, ABIC 2017 is the premier global meeting which promotes innovation in bioscience to ensure sustainable food, feed, fibre and fuel security as the climate changes. Delegates from around the world will gather to promote the application of agricultural biotechnology. Program and keynotes can be explored at the conference webiste. Register today at



Chad Lawley, Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics, will receive the 2016 Terry G. Falconer Memorial Rh Institute Foundation Emerging Researcher Award (Social Sciences) tonight. These honours are given to academic staff members who are in the early stages of their careers and who display exceptional innovation, leadership and promise in their respective fields. The winners each receive $12,000 toward their research program. Chad is being recognized for his studies of the economics of environmental and agricultural policy issues. See more at

Laurie Connor, Animal Science, received the Award of Distinction at the banquet following the Manitoba Pork Council annual general meeting yesterday. This award was presented to Laurie in recognition of her outstanding contributions to the hog industry in teaching and mentoring the next generation of livestock specialists, while advancing swine research provincially and nationally, at all times with passion and integrity.

Claudia Narvaez, Food Science, and Jordan Bannerman, Entomology, were presented with the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) Teaching Award of Merit and Chelsey Walchuk, Human Nutritional Sciences and Jillian Seniuk Cicek, Biosystems Engineering, were selected to receive the Graduate Student Teaching Award of Merit. These awards are given annually to individuals who excel in teaching an agricultural discipline.

Ten students from the Department of Plant Science attended the 33rd Plant Science Graduate Student Symposium at the University of Saskatoon in March. Chad Koscielny (Ph.D. student with Rob Duncan) was one of the keynote speakers, Ashley Ammeter (M.Sc. student with Rob Duncan)  won 1st place in the Proposal Section, Leanne Koroscil (M.Sc. student with Rob Gulden) won 2nd place in the Proposal Section,  Karuna Kapoor (M.Sc. student with Claudio Stasolla) won 3rd place in the Plant Physiology Section, and Bruce Pei (M.Sc. student with Curt McCartney and co-advisor Brent McCallum) won 3rd place in the Plant Pathology Section.  Other Plant Science students attending were Harunur Rashid (Ph.D. student with Dilantha Fernando), Kenny So (Ph.D. student with Rob Duncan), Keval Shah (Ph.D. student with Genyi Li), Yang Lin (Ph.D. student with Anita Brûlé-Babel) and Uzzal Liton (Ph.D. student with Belay Ayele).

Jitendra Paliwal, Biosystems Engineering, and Martin Scanlon, Food Science, were invited to the Pulse milling Workshop convened by Pulse Canada, the USA Dry Pea & Lentil Council, the American Pulse Association and Buhler Group (North America).  The workshop was held in Minneapolis, MN on March 21-23.  The workshop was facilitated by Martin as the pulse industry on both sides of the border decided on what underpinning research needs in milling would help the industry meet its ambitious target of 25 by 2025, where 25% of 2025’s pulse production would be incorporated as ingredients in snacks, baked goods, noodles and other sectors of the food industry.

Dilantha Fernando, Plant Science, was invited by Sichuan Agriculture University in Wenjiang, Sichuan Province, China and by the Sichuan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Chengdu (home of the Panda), Sichuan Province in China to visit their rapeseed research programs (breeding and pathology), and have academic discussions, visit field research stations in Xindu, Guanghan and Mengyang. Dilantha was also invited to give two research seminars related to U of M’s canola breeding and pathology research programs. Dilantha met with several faculty members, research staff and graduate students during his visits. Dilantha was introduced to their breeding programs using some novel pollination methods in the greenhouse, and to clubroot and Sclerotinia research at the field level. Sichuan Province is the largest canola/rapeseed producing province in China.

Claudia Narvaez, Food Science, and undergraduate Food Science student Matthew Wells have been part of a project with Red River College to utilize spent grains left over from the brewing industry to create new fermented food products.  The results were recently unveiled at at the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute. Guests were able to  sample soup, popcorn, and pastries seasoned with pale malt miso from Farmery and dark malt miso from Torque. This unique creation allows a secondary source of revenue from the spent grains

Darren Fife, fourth year Human Nutritional Sciences student, attended the International Federation of Home Economics conference in Sligo, Ireland, March 23-25.  Darren presented on the experiential service learning project “Kent Road Project – A Food Focused Intervention”.

Mehdi Arzandeh, Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics, successfully defended his Ph.D. His dissertation was titled “Three Essays on Agricultural Research and Development, Mergers and Futures Markets”.

Lauryn Keen, Diploma student, was selected as Bison Athlete of the Year –



Derek Brewin, Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics, will give the annual Canola Outlook on CTV’s Farmgate on April 8 . The interview is run by Market Prospects out of the U of S at:

David Lobb, Soil Science, was quoted in the article “On-farm water collection key to drainage management” in the Manitoba Co-operator (April 6) – see page 3 at  He was also quoted in the article “Runoff management needs rethink, say scientists” in the Western Producer (April 6) – see page 36 at

Kateryn Rochon, Entomology, was interviewed for the article on CBC Radio Noon and on Radio-Canada  She was also interviewed by Metro News –   The UM Today news blog also featured her –

Joyce Slater, Human Nutritional Sciences, wrote an Op Ed titled “The Kids’ Diets Are Not Alright” which appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press (March 29) –

The School of Agriculture’s Michele Rogalsky and two Diploma in Agriculture students, Jake Ayre and Brent Cardy were interviewed recently on the Manitoba Farm Journal. You can hear Jake’s and Brent’s interview at the 20:00 mark here –

Mario Tenuta, Soil Science, was quoted in the article “Frozen soils might be major emitter” in the Manitoba Co-operator (March 27) –

Dylan MacKay, Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals, was on CTV Morning with Ben Mulroney (March 27) to discuss the GenePredict study –

A story by Rick Holley, Food Science, entitled “Why flour can harbour dangerous E. coli bacteria” that ran in July 2016 has found new life with a recent Robin Hood flour recall –



Entz, M (daughter of the ‘other’ Entz, M), Slater, J and Desmarais, A.  Education vs. Groceries:  University Student Food Insecurity in Manitoba (, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, March 30, 2017.  This highlights a new study conducted at the University of Manitoba which found that over 35 percent of students surveyed were food insecure.  U of M undergraduate and graduate students were almost three times as food insecure as the general Canadian population.

Ackerman, J., F. Zvomuya, and N. Cicek. 2016. Anaerobic storage of commercial pig manures to dissolve phosphorus for struvite precipitation. Appl. Eng. Agric. 32:285-292.

Rgia A. Othman, Semone B. Myrie, David Mymin, Jean-Baptiste Roullet, Robert D. Steiner, Peter J.H. Jones. 2017. Effect of ezetimibe on low- and high-density lipoprotein subclasses in sitosterolemia. Atherosclerosis, Volume 260, 27 – 33. DOI:



The Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences is posting for an Instructor 1 – Foods and Nutrition in the Department of Human Nutritional Sciences –

The ICAN-WISE Scholarship is a scholarship aimed at facilitating women mentee-mentor academic research collaborations in natural sciences and engineering fields.  Six scholarships valued at $6,000 each are available in 2017 (two for Manitoba). The funding is the students’s stipend while working with their mentor on a research project in the summer of 2017. For info, see:  Application Deadline: April 24, 2017.

Manitoba Open Farm Day – agriculture organizations and farms wishing to register for Manitoba Open Farm Day on Sunday September 17, 2017 may go to and click on Register Your Farm – Scroll down and click on “register your farm HERE.”  The deadline for farms to register is April 28, 2017.


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