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Investment Agriculture Foundation’s latest round of grants, which total more than $2 million. The IAF is an industry-led not-for-profit organization that invests federal and provincial funds in support of innovative projects that benefit the agriculture and agri-food industry in B.C. The cranberry commission is getting $301, 750 for a two-part research project aimed at boosting productivity.


The average yield of the province’s cranberry farms is about half that of their American counterparts. The 18- month research project will explore enhanced methods of production through the evaluation of different varieties and media at the new B.C. Cranberry Research Centre. Building on research results from the first phase, this project will test new cranberry varieties in B.C. conditions in order to increase productivity, competitiveness and profitability. The research will provide producers with additional results on plant vigour and berry production qualities, and offer management information on different media and varieties.

The IAF funding list, announced July 30, includes 25 projects contracted between Jan. 1 and April 30. They include $90,000 for the Agriculture Research and Development Corporation (ARDCorp) to help growers contend with the impending legal requirement to recycle agricultural packaging waste. The onus is on industry to develop and implement a proper stewardship program. ARDCorp, in partnership with CleanFarms Inc. will examine the amount of agricultural packaging waste currently generated and explore management options... This year is the 100th anniversary of the Aldergrove Fair and the provincial government marked the occasion with the presentation of a Century Farm Award. On behalf of agriculture minister Don McRae, Fort Langley-Aldergrove MLA Rich Coleman commended fair organizers for the century of hard work and contributions the fair has made to B.C.’s legacy of food production and agriculture. The first one was run by the Aldergrove Agricultural Association. It started as a way for farmers and home gardeners to display

he B.C. Cranberry Marketing Commission is among major recipients in the

their crops and livestock and for homemakers to show off their baking, needlework and more. The 2012 edition in July was organized by the Agricultural Association and the Aldergrove Festival Days Society. Events included exhibits, a pancake breakfast with local berry syrups, tractor pulls and lawnmower races, a parade, and a Kids Zone with carnival rides and games. The fair also featured the Canadian Fast Draw Championship, billed as 'The Fastest Timed Sport in the World'... With its two newest raspberry releases, Cornell (“Big Red” ) University is going gold and crimson. “Double Gold” and “Crimson Night” offer small-scale growers and home gardeners showy, flavorful raspberries on vigorous, disease- resistant plants.“Both varieties have attracted a lot of interest from small- scale growers because they are looking for varieties with intense flavor and a different look from the supermarket varieties,” said Courtney Weber, Cornell small fruits breeder and associate professor of horticulture. Double Gold produces a deeply blushed, golden champagne-colored

fruit with a distinctive conical shape, earning the ‘double’ in its name for two harvests per season. The first year of planting, the initial crop is produced in the fall on the tips of that year’s canes, and a second crop is produced farther down the same canes the following summer. According to Weber, none of the golden raspberries already on the market combines excellent flavor, peachy blush color, a conical shape and the ability to bear two crops per season. The release is targeted to u- pick growers, farm stands, and home gardeners because the fruit is too delicate for long-distance shipping. Although the fruit is tender, the plants that bear them are tough. Crimson Night caught Weber’s eye for its heavy fall crop and dark, shiny fruit. Grown in a commercial high-tunnel system that offers protection from the elements, it is vigorous and productive. Grown outdoors without protection, Crimson Night is more compact, making the dark purple canes a particularly attractive ornamental for container gardening or a backyard raspberry plot.

“The berries are medium large with excellent flavor,” said Weber...


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BERRIES, FLOWER BULBS AND STRAWBERRY PLANTS Note: Strawberry Crop deadline is March 31


British Columbia Berry Grower • Fall 2012 15

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