News

A bright future for HQP Scholars: Nicole Weidner

Tools such as the Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP) program play a big role in developing future leaders who aim to participate fully in research innovation. The program provides industry access, educational opportunities and funding to students with promise in research excellence.

Yellow robotic arm in a tomato greenhouse

A robot that lends a hand in greenhouses

The labour-intensive task of harvesting and pruning has become a challenge for greenhouse vegetable growers, making up to 30 per cent of their overall costs.

Can robots help?

Prof. Medhat Moussa, School of Engineering, thinks so. He’s developing a robot system he hopes will be able to harvest, package and de-leaf greenhouse crops without assistance from humans. A prototype is currently being put to the test by harvesting tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers—Ontario’s main greenhouse crops—in Leamington greenhouses. 

Terri O'sullivan holding a piglet

Swine network promoting collaboration, awareness and innovation

As food production becomes more complex, research results – and the dissemination of results to end-users – becomes even more important. Aiding in the dissemination of swine research results is one role of the Ontario Swine Research Network (OSRN). 

Man and woman with notebook in front of 3 beef cows

A major platform for the beef sector

A huge $15.5-million facelift is underway at the Elora Research Station, with the construction of a new cow-calf research centre, a facility owned by the Agricultural Research Institute of Ontario and managed by the University of Guelph under the OMAFRA-U of G Agreement. A separate project will repurpose 200 acres of land to create pasture at the station and almost double the capacity for livestock on site.

Green grapes on a vine

Cheers to research to help Ontario grapevines over winter

University of Guelph researchers at the Simcoe Research Station are field testing enhanced common wine-quality grape rootstocks in preparation for winter to determine if even more viticulture development can take place across Ontario.

Man in field gathering flock of sheep

Deeper analysis means better answers

One of the greatest challenges of big data for researchers is the sheer volume of information generated by the rapidly expanding number of studies on any given subject. Another is the wide range of conclusions at which seemingly similar studies arrive. For example, consider the many conflicting reports about the benefits or hazards of a particular food or ingredient, depending on which study is quoted.

Chain links made of computer code under text that says "Big data and blockchain technology: U of G teams up with companies and organizations to capitalize on this technology’s potential for the agri-food sector"

Big data and blockchain technology: A game changer for agri-food research?

Historically, research has been a long-term investment. Whether the subject was health care, engineering or agri-food sciences, advancements have been mostly incremental. Over the long term, the small but steady gains have brought us to current yields, efficiencies and knowledge that were previously unimaginable.

Minister Jeff Leal, MPP Liz Sandals, and UofG President Franco Vaccarino sitting in front of newly signed agreements

Ontario Invests $713 Million in OMAFRA-U of G Agreement

The provincial government will invest up to $713 million toward a unique agreement between the University of Guelph and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) to further discovery and innovation and position Canada as a world leader in agri-food.

Turning greenhouse waste into energy

Using fossil fuels to heat greenhouses is expensive and environmentally unsustainable.  But how about heating them with plant waste from the greenhouses themselves?

That’s what Prof. Animesh Dutta, School of Engineering, is working towards. He’s producing a fuel-flexible boiler (heater) that can use a variety of non-conventional, yet readily available fuels in an efficient way. 

One such fuel is called biocarbon. It’s made from plant matter – leaves, stems and vines of greenhouse plants – that is abundant in greenhouses, is costly to dispose of and has no resale value.