Research Projects

Each year, IRDA's R&D Team conducts more than one hundred research projects in sustainable agriculture. What's more, IRDA is working with Quebec's key agricultural stakeholders to find concrete solutions.

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Results for 2022
Henhouse worker
2020-2023 • Livestock production

The impact of alternative housing for laying hens on air quality and the health of workers

The overall aim of this research is to assess the exposure of workers in conventional and alternative egg production facilities to dust and bio-aerosols, and to characterize the respiratory health risks they face.

Researcher: Stéphane Godbout

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Stéphane Godbout
Manure spreading
2019-2023 • Livestock production

Fugitive emissions after manure spreading: risk assessment and mitigation

This project addresses the risks posed by the spreading of manure and emissions released into the environment to the biosecurity of farms, as well as to the health of workers and nearby populations.

Researcher: Stéphane Godbout

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Stéphane Godbout
Hen house
2019-2023 • Livestock production

Developing strategies for animal welfare-compliant livestock buildings, to minimize health risks to workers

This project addresses the risks posed by new breeding practices that were developed to improve animal welfare.

Researcher: Stéphane Godbout

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Stéphane Godbout
Castors' Steam, Brome-Missisquoi County
2019-2023

Installing and operating a hydrometric station at Ruisseau aux Castors

IRDA has been mandated to design, install, and operate a hydrometric station at the watershed outlet of Ruisseau aux Castors in the Brome-Missisquoi regional county municipality.

Researcher: Aubert Michaud

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Aubert Michaud
River
2019-2023 • Livestock production

Developing a procedure and tools that utilize genetic markers to identify fecal contamination sources in waterways

This project will develop a procedure that relies on genetic markers to identify the animal species responsible for fecal contamination.

Researcher: Caroline Côté

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Caroline Côté
Hay and corn
2019-2022 • Market gardeningField crops

Including perennial fodder crops as “cut and carry” nitrogen sources in long-term rotations of organically grown potatoes and field crops

We will compare the ability of mixed protocols using blended green manure, with or without the addition of farm manure, to satisfy the nitrogen requirements of a silage corn rotation crop.

Researcher: Christine Landry

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Christine Landry
Winter wheat
2019-2022 • Field crops

Measuring the impact of winter vs. spring cereals on profitability, soil health, and pesticide use

Ten test sites will operate over a two-year period on farms spread over ten Québec regions to compare the performance of winter and spring cereals.

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Marc-Olivier Gasser
Caroline Côté
Luc Belzile
Forage crop
2019-2023 • Market gardeningField crops

Implementing a three-year sustainable forage crop rotation for potato and field crop farmers

This project seeks to create farmer partnerships in which participants work on implementing a three-year forage crop rotation protocol in potato and field crop fields.

Researcher: Richard Hogue

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Richard Hogue
Corn field
2019-2023 • Field crops

Improving nitrogen management in Québec grain corn

This project will determine the optimal post-emergent nitrogen dose to apply.

Researcher: Christine Landry

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Christine Landry
Long cane raspberries
2019-2023 • Fruit production

Out-of-soil cultivation of organic long cane raspberries

Development of a growing out-of-soil organic raspberries in high tunnels protocol in a profitable and competitive manner with a view to selling products locally or to large retail chains.

Researcher: Annabelle Firlej

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Annabelle Firlej
Strawberry
2019-2023 • Fruit production

Modifying an irrigated day-neutral-strawberry growing protocol to improve soil functionality by activating beneficial microorganisms through the addition of labile carbon at planting time

This project will modify current protocols with the addition of labile carbon to preserve or rapidly restore the activity of beneficial microorganisms.

Researcher: Christine Landry

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Christine Landry
Agricultural drainage
2019-2022 • Field crops

Using controlled drainage to optimize water and nutrient uptake by crops

This project relies on the continuous measurement of field water table heights; water exports; as well as sediment, nitrogen, and phosphorus runoff into drains at four field-crop production sites.

Researcher: Aubert Michaud

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Aubert Michaud
Potato plant flower
2019-2022 • Market gardening

Developing a web app to facilitate the viewing and interpretation of potato soil health analyses

This project aims to develop an accessible and user-friendly web application that will let stakeholders search the IRDA potato soil database, one of the largest in Canada, to visualize the impact of growing practices and protocols on the biological, physicochemical, and agronomic characteristics of soils cultivated with different cropping systems.

Researcher: Richard Hogue

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Richard Hogue
Fungicide spraying

Assessing the economic impact of fungicide resistance in horticultural corps

Project initiated to review the knowledge on the fungicide resistance of various pathogens to provide a preliminary assessment of the economic impacts of fungicide resistance.

Researcher: Luc Belzile

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Luc Belzile
Cow and calf
2019-2022 • Livestock production

Developing strategies to reduce and control pathogens in the drinking water used for outdoor cow-calf breeding

Cow-calf farms tend to prefer outdoor breeding, poor-quality drinking water can have a direct impact on animal health, and may lead to higher pathogen levels in the environment and at slaughter time, and negative consequences for food safety.

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Caroline Côté
Stéphane Godbout

The solutions developed by IRDA aim to...

Ensure the sustainability

and quality of soil, water, and air

Protect the health and well-being

of local communities by improving the quality of crop and livestock production, with an emphasis on animal welfare

Safeguard the economic viability

of crop and livestock production