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AG e-news December 5, 2017

News and events from the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences

December 5, 2017 — 

News and events from the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences


Tuesday, December 5 – A Department of Animal Science Seminar will be held on in Room 219 Animal Science Building at 10:00 am. Dipana Maharjan, M.Sc. student, will make the extension presentation “Use of Needle free Injection Device (NFID) for vaccination in beef cattle”.  All are welcome to attend.

Wednesday, December 6 – The fourth seminar in the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences 2017-2018 Seminar Series will be held at 3:30 pm in the Carolyn Sifton Lecture Theatre, 130 Agriculture Building. Dr. Jared Carlberg, Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics, will present “Measuring Potential Public Healthcare Cost Savings from Mitigation of Food-Related Chronic Diseases”.  Refreshments will be served at 3:00 pm in the Atrium. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Thursday, December 7 – You are invited to attend the Holiday Concert at the Admin hosted by the Office of the President from 12 pm to 1 pm featuring University Singers, under the direction of Dr. Elroy Friesen.

Friday, December 8 – There is a Food and Human Nutritional Sciences M.Sc. Thesis Defense at 10 am in Room 200B Human Ecology. Kelsey Mann will present “The Association of Eating Assistance on Energy Intake of Long Term Care Residents with Cognitive Impairment: The Making the Most of Mealtimes Study (M3)”.

Friday, December 8 – There will be a Soil Science Seminar with Dr. Alex Koiter, Department of Geography, Brandon University “The Geography of My Academic Path” at 12:30 pm in 346 Ellis Building.

Tuesday, December 12 – There is a Food and Human Nutritional Sciences M.Sc. Thesis Defense at 12 pm in the RCFFN Boardroom. Michelle Leaf will present “Dairy Milk as an Ergogenic Aid: Assessing Athletic Performance and Perceptions”.

Tuesday, December 12 – As part of the CCARM Food for Thought lecture series, Luc Clair, Assistant Professor, Economics, University of Winnipeg and Ag/Health Economics, CCARM will give a talk at 1:00 pm in the Samuel N. Cohen Auditorium, St. Boniface Hospital Albrechtsen Research Centre, 351 Taché Avenue, on “Health Economics: Theory, Methods and Its Applications”. Everyone is invited to attend.

Tuesday, December 12 – Everyone is welcome to attend the Faculty’s Annual Holiday Celebration from 2:00 – 4:30 pm. Venue change this year – the event will be held in the Agriculture Building Atrium. There will be some musical entertainment to get you in the holiday mood!

Wednesday, December 13 and Thursday, December 14 – The 2017 Manitoba Agronomists Conference themed “Managing  Crops to Maintain Markets” will be held in Room 172 Agriculture Building and via webcast. Registration closes December 8. Graduate students are invited to attend as well as submit posters.  Poster requirements and deadlines as well as registration information are on the MAC website at Any inquiries can be directed to the MAC Coordinator, Rachel Sydor at mbagconf [at] umanitoba [dot] ca or 204-474-8473.

Thursday, December 14 – A special seminar in advance of the Fields on Wheels conference will feature Mr. Mike Gifford, Former Chief Agricultural Trade Negotiator for Canada, at 12 noon in 307 Tier Building. His topic is “What does NAFTA mean to Western Canada?”. Mike Gifford served as Canada’s chief agricultural trade negotiator and principal agricultural trade policy advisor to the ministers of agriculture and trade. He served as the chairman of the GATT International Meat Council and acted as the chief Canadian agricultural negotiator in the Canada/US Free Trade Agreement, the North American Free Trade Agreement, and the Uruguay Round of GATT negotiations. Since retiring from the federal public service, Mike has provided advice to a wide range of domestic and foreign clients in both the public and private sectors and has served as a member of a WTO panel.

Thursday, December 14 – There is a Food and Human Nutritional Sciences M.Sc. Thesis Defense at 1 pm in Room 200B Human Ecology. Amy Henderson will present “Growing Roots: An Action Research Project to Build Newcomer Food Security in Winnipeg’s North End”. Everyone welcome to attend.

Friday, December 15 – The 22nd Annual Fields on Wheels Conference themed “NFATA 2018: Implications for Agricultural Trade and Transportation is a one-day conference that will take place at the Four Points South Hotel, Winnipeg. More details including complete speaker list, and online registration at Registration $345 plus GST.

Friday, December 15 – The Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals invites you to attend their Holiday Party in the RCFFN Atrium, 196 Innovation Drive 1:30 pm – 4:30 pm. Please RSVP by December 5, 2017 to rcffn [at] umanitoba [dot] ca or 204-474-9989.

January 24-25 – Sponsored by the Manitoba Soil Science Society, the Soil Fertility Refresher will be held on at the Brandon Ag Extension Centre in Brandon, 9 am – 4 pm on both days.  Instructors include Don Flaten, Soil Science, and John Heard, Manitoba Agriculture. They will take you through soil fertility basics. Course is $100 and limited to 30 participants. There are 9 Nutrient Management CEUs and 3 Soil and Water Management CEUs available. Preregistration required to John Heard, John [dot] Heard [at] gov [dot] mb [dot] ca or 204-745-8093



Jake Ayre, Agribusiness student, was one of two Canadian students to win the Canadian Seed Trade Association Future Influencer competition. Jake was given the opportunity to attend the GrowCanada conference and present his outlook on agriculture, which from all reports he did very well.  Read more about Jake’s success at

The University of Manitoba recognized teaching award recipients at a special ceremony on November 22. Among the Faculty’s recipients (for awards presented at various times throughout the last year) were Jordan Bannerman, Claudia Narvaez, Michael Eskin, Dilantha Fernando , Claudio Stasolla, Don Flaten, Tee Boon Goh, Jillian Seniuk Cicek, Kris Dick, Ying Chen and Jared Carlberg.

Karin Wittenberg, Jared Carlberg and Crystal Jorgenson, Dean’s Office, attended an award banquet for Manitoba recipients of the Monsanto Canada Opportunity Scholarships on November 16. Seven students that received the award opted to enter the diploma and degree programs in the Faculty this past fall – Luke Bossuyt (Oak Bluff), Margaux Cassagne (Ste. Agathe), Elisabeth Crick (Morris), Kate Letexier (Fisher Branch), Magdalena Melynchuk (Balmoral), Michelle Pottinger (Neepawa), and Owen Wolf (Fannystelle). Crystal served as a judge in Monsanto’s 2017 national  awards program.  Thanks to industry and community awards programs such as this one, high school students receive encouragement and support to pursue educational opportunities in the agricultural and food sciences.

Christine Rawluk, National Centre for Livestock and the Environment, co-developed and facilitated the pilot student workshop “Collaborating for Sustainability: Food Systems” November 17 & 18 joint with Environmental Sciences/Studies, Clayton H. Riddell Faculty of Environment, Earth and Resources. This first-of-its-kind workshop brought together Agriculture and Environment students to work together on improving the sustainability of our Manitoba Food System. Don Flaten, Soil Science and Martin Scanlon, Associate Dean (Research), Food and Human Nutritional Sciences and NCLE Chair, were also instrumental in the development and delivery of this workshop, sharing their knowledge and experiences with all students.

Martin Nyachoti, Animal Science, and Christine Rawluk, National Centre for Livestock and the Environment were invited by Professor Liu Di to visit Heilongjiang Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Harbin, China where Martin gave an invited talk on “Energy Measurements in Swine Feed and Feed Ingredients” and Christine presented on the NCLE whole systems approach to sustainably recycling manure nutrients for crop and forage production on November 12. While in Harbin, Martin also held discussions with Professor Yanhuan Li from the Northeast Agricultural University Veterinary School on future collaborations on the use of phytogenics to support gut health and function in piglets fed antibiotic-free diets. The trip included an invited visit to the Institute of Animal Nutrition and Feed Sciences, Jilin Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Gongzhuling on November 13 to discuss future collaborations on energy metabolism in swine with hosts Dr. Xiaogang Yan, Director, Professor Huaming Yang and students. Martin also spoke on the Animal Science Research Program at the University of Manitoba and prospects for graduate studies.

Traveling to the south of China, Martin also gave the invited talk “A Thorough Research Review of  Canadian Canola Meal Use in Swine Diets in Canada” at The Canola Meal Utilization Workshop hosted by Canola Council of Canada in Guangzhou on November 15 and to the scientists at Tianjin Baodi Agri & Tech Co., Ltd on November 16.

Trust Beta, Food and Human Nutritional Sciences, co-authored along with collaborators (Debora Giordano, Francesca Vanara, Massimo Blandino, Amedeo Reyneri (Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Forestali e Alimentari, Università di Torino, Italy)) a paper titled “Effetto delle pratiche colturali sul contenuto in composti antiossidanti nella granella di mais pigmentati (Effect of cultural practices on the content of antioxidant compounds in pigmented maize grains”’ presented at the 11th Meeting of the Italian Association for Cereal Science and Technology (AISTEC) held in Rome Italy, November 22-24. Debora Giordano completed part of her PhD thesis project at the University of Manitoba.



Kateryn Rochon, Entomology, was interviewed on CBC’s Quirks and Quarks (December 2) to answer the question “Why do mosquitoes seem so attracted to some people and not others?” –

Nazim Cicek, Biosystems Engineering, wrote the opinion article “Manitoba has untapped potential for wind power” in the Winnipeg Free Press (November 27) –

The announcement of federal funding to a University of Manitoba research project (headed by Lysa Porth, Asper School of Business) on aimed at using satellite-based technology to help ranchers manage forage production was featured in the article “New risk-management research” in the Manitoba Co-operator (November 23) –

Don Flaten, Soil Science, presented to Manitoba Legislative committee reviewing Bill 24 on scientific principles for environmentally sound nutrient management practices. A summary of his presentation “Ag has role in nutrient management” appeared in the Western Producer (November 23) –

Martin Entz, Plant Science, was one of several people featured in a recent documentary entitled “From Seed to Seed”, which was highlighted in the article “Documentary shows Manitoba farms adopting ecological practices” in the  Manitoba Co-operator (November 20) –

Rick Holley, Food Science Professor Emeritus, was quoted in the story “The inspection gap: An investigation into food inspections in Nova Scotia” on Global News – and also in the story “Step away from the cookie dough. E. coli outbreaks traced to raw flour” –

Peter Jones, Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals, was interviewed on ICI Radio-Canada Manitoba (November 21) about the TMPLR program  –

Peter Eck and Dylan MacKay, Food and Human Nutritional Sciences, were quoted in the Winnipeg Free Press (November 23) article “Honey, do these genes make me look hypertensive –

Christine Rawluk, National Centre for Livestock and the Environment, was quoted in the article “NCLE research helps to address environmental challenge” in the November issue of Cattle Country (p.13), published by the Manitoba Beef Producers.



Amiro, B.D., M. Tenuta, M. Gervais, A. Glenn, and X. Gao. 2017. A decade of carbon flux measurements with annual and perennial crop rotations on the Canadian Prairies. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 247:491-502.

Amiro, B.D., M. Tenuta, K. Hanis-Gervais, X. Gao, D. Flaten, and C. Rawluk. 2017. Agronomists’ views on the potential to adopt beneficial greenhouse gas nitrogen management practices through fertilizer management. Canadian Journal of Soil Science 97:801-804.

Gibbs, J. (2017) Notes on the nests of Augochloropsis metallica fulgida and Megachile mucida in central Michigan (Hymenoptera: Halictidae, Megachilidae). The Great Lakes Entomologist 50(1): 17­–24 [cover article].

Gibbs, J., Ascher, J.S., Rightmyer M.G. & Isaacs, R. (2017) The bees of Michigan (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Anthophila), with notes on distribution, taxonomy, pollination, and natural history. Zootaxa 4352(1): 1-160.

Ru Li1, Hein Min Tun, Musarrat Jahan, Zhengxiao Zhang, Ayush Kumar, Dilantha Fernando, Annemieke Farenhorst & Ehsan Khafipour. 2017. Comparison of DNA, PMA and RNA based 16S RNAIllumina sequencing for detection of live bacteria in water. Scientific Reports 7: 5752 | DOI:10.1038/s41598-017-02516-3.

Becker, M.G, Zhang, X., Walker, P., Wan, J.C., Millar, J.L., Khan D., Granger, M.J., Cavers, J.D., Chan, A.C., Dilantha W.G., Fernando, Belmonte, M., 2017. Transcriptome analysis of the Brassica napus-Leptosphaeria maculans pathosystem identifies receptor signaling and structural genes underlying plant resistance. The Plant Journal. DOI: 10.1111/tpj.13514.

Xuehua Zhang, Gary Peng, H. Randy Kutcher, Marie-Hélène Balesdent, Régine Delourme, W. G. Dilantha Fernando. 2017. Breakdown of Rlm3 resistance in the Brassica napus–Leptosphaeria maculans pathosystem in western Canada. European Journal of Plant Pathology. 145:659–674. DOI: 10.1111/ppa.12626

Al-Taweel, K., Amarasinghe, C., Brule-Babel, A., and Fernando, W.G.D. 2017. Gene expression analysis of host-pathogen interaction between wheat and Fusarium graminearum. European Journal of Plant Pathology. 148:617-629.

Xuehua Zhang and W. G. Dilantha Fernando. 2017. Insights into fighting against blackleg disease of Brassica napus in Canada. Crop and Pasture Science.  (invited review).

Kelly A. Duke, Michael G. Becker, Ian J. Girard, Jenna L. Millar, W. G. Dilantha Fernando, Mark F. Belmonte and Teresa R. de Kievit. 2017. The biocontrol agent Pseudomonas chlororaphis PA23 primes Brassica napus defenses through distinct gene networks. BMC Genomics. 18:467. DOI 10.1186/s12864-017-3848-6.



The Department of Food and Human Nutritional Sciences invites applications for a full-time, tenure-track position at the rank of Assistant Professor – Food Systems and Human Health.  Closing date for applications is January 15, 2018. For more information, please visit

Call for Poster Presentations – Direct Farm Manitoba and the Prairie Fruit Growers Association are joining forces this year to put on a combined one day conference for producers, growers, market coordinators and anyone interested in direct marketing local food and value added products in Manitoba. There will be interesting speakers, a tradeshow along with ample time to network and have some fun. We know that this community of producers can learn a lot from each other and this year we want to create a variety of ways for you to share your unique expertise. Would you be interested in putting together a poster presentations for the conference ? These would be visual displays using pictures, captions, text and diagrams to share your story. Have you mastered the best design for a high tunnel to grow your vegetables? Perhaps you trialed a new feed with your livestock this year and can share your results? Experimenting with irrigation options…. Start a conversation via a poster! Posters will be displayed for all conference registrants to see and mingle through. Hang out near your poster and start some great conversation with others who are interested in what you are doing. Poster presenters will be eligible for a discounted conference registration (one student rate) for their trouble! Interested? Send your name, bio, and a brief description of your presentation to events [at] directfarmmanitoba [dot] ca by December 15, 2017.

Call for Poster Abstracts – The 6th Native Prairie Restoration/Reclamation Workshop will be in Saskatoon, SK on February 7 & 8, 2018. Deadline for poster abstracts is December 8th, 2017, 11:59 pm CST. The Workshop will include oral presentations, case studies, panel discussion, trade show and poster session. The theme for the workshop is Look to the Future, Learn from the Past. To submit at poster, please email: caitlinmroz [at] hotmail [dot] com by December 8, 2017 at 11:59 CST. All presenters must register for the event. To register: Questions about the poster sessions can be directed to Caitlin Mroz at caitlinmroz [at] hotmail [dot] com.

2018 International Society for Agricultural and Health (ISASH) Call for Abstracts – the Canadian Agricultural Safety Association and Farm Safety Nova Scotia are teaming up to host “Farm to Sea: Anchoring Agricultural Health and Safety,” the 2018 ISASH conference in Halifax in June. You are encouraged to present findings in Agricultural Health and Safety.  Learn more at

Certificate of Merit Call for Nominations – The Certificate of Merit is presented by the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences and the School of Agriculture in recognition of leadership with agricultural organizations and outstanding service to the community at large. Each year two Certificates of Merit are presented, normally, one to a graduate of the Agriculture Diploma program, and one to a graduate of the Agriculture Degree program. Nominations are considered by the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences Executive Committee and must be received no later than January 12, 2018. Nominations should include a letter from the nominator describing the nominee’s leadership contributions and service to the community.  Letters of support may also be included. More information including a list of previous recipients can be found at

Bees and Trees!  Beekeeping for the Hobbyist runs 9 Wednesdays beginning January 17, 2018 – learn more or register via Manitoba Arborists’ Training & Licensing Course has its next online (in-class is now full) course intake in January 2018 – visit

Two NSERC Competitions give you to the opportunity to highlight your research – Science Action! – NSERC is once again inviting you to submit a 60-second video  showcasing science and engineering on our campus for a chance to win cash prizes in the Science Action!  contest. Read more: Contest closes: January 19,  2018.  Science Exposed is a science photography contest with cash prizes open to students and academics. Read more: Contest closes: January 12, 2018.

Taste testers needed for breads containing pea flour (food quality study) – Honorarium provided. Criteria: No Food Allergies, 18 years and older. Fourth Floor Human Ecology Building. One Session – approx. 20-30 mins scheduled in advance: Sessions are at 11:30, 12:00, 12:30, 1:00 or 1:30 and are still running December 5-8. Contact: Donna Ryland ph 204-474-8071 or e–mail donna [dot] ryland [at] umanitoba [dot] ca for more information.

Manitoba Sustainable Development invites nominations and applications for the 2017 Manitoba Excellence in Sustainability Awards. The awards recognize and honour people, projects and ideas that successfully turn the principles and guidelines of sustainable development into lasting achievements. Any individual, business, institution, organization, community group or youth in Manitoba can apply or be nominated for an award. To make a nomination or apply for an award, visit The deadline for submitting an application or nomination is noon on Friday, December 8, 2017.


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