Research Strategy

Research is a core function of the POGA. Working collaboratively with other partners and research organizations, POGA seeks to leverage research investment dollars to increase profitability of oat production for Prairie growers.

Through 2021, the three provincial associations in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and Prairie oat growers have turned $3.9 M of levy dollars into $27.4 M which is means growers in Western Canada have contributed less than 15 cents of every dollar spent on research and marketing.

National Oat Research Strategy 2018–2023

Prepared with the support of the Government of Saskatchewan, Industry Organization Development Fund, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and The Prairie Oat Growers Association.

SUMMARY

Oats are a vital part of the Canadian cropping rotation. Canada is the largest exporter of oats in the world and has a premier reputation for quality production. This success is underpinned by good research, so a National Research Strategy for Oats has been developed with all parts of the value chain involved.

FULL PROJECT LISTING

For a full list of projects that are ongoing/completed, please see the Annual Reports under the respective provincial commissions.

POGA Research Projects


No category.

Research Topic: Insect/Disease/Weeds

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Abstract/Summary: This survey provides a record of seed-borne pathogen trends in pulse and cereal crops and allows for continued tracking of diseases over time. The interim seed quality data, from the time of harvest until the end of December, provided early insights into seed quality trends and helped to identify potential pathogens of concern and their prevalence across the province.

    The survey is intended to provide a benchmark for annual seed-borne pathogen levels across the province. Low disease levels of seed produced during 2021 has been a positive outcome of a challenging growing season.  Largely attributed to extreme drought conditions during the growing season and at the time of harvest, interim data indicates a large proportion of pathogen-free pulse (lentil, field pea, chickpea) and cereal (barley, durum, oat, and spring wheat) seed.

    The Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture compiled the maps, which show the mean infection levels of the samples as well as the historical trends across all pathogens and crops.

    This project was funded by the Saskatchewan Pulse Growers (SPG), Saskatchewan Wheat Development Commission (SaskWheat), Saskatchewan Barley Development Commission (SaskBarley), and Saskatchewan Oat Development Commission (SaskOats)
View Results

Research Topic: Insect/Disease/Weeds

  • Project Status: In Progress
  • Principal Investigators: Dr. Christian Willenborg
  • Project Dates: April 2018 - March 2023
  • Abstract/Summary: Wild oat management is perhaps most challenging in oat crops because the genetic similarity between the two species precludes selective control with herbicides. However, it may be possible to utilize new technology with current herbicides to better manage wild in oat crops. This project sought to assess the competitive ability of modern oat cultivars, as well as to test whether combining inter-row spraying with weed wicking could improve wild oat control.

    Multiple inter-row and wicking applications of herbicides at the 2- and 4-leaf crop stages provided the best combination of crop yield and minimum wild oat in the harvested sample. By employing inter-row spraying with modern competitive oat cultivars, growers should improve wild oat management in tame oat production.
View Results

Research Topic: Nutrition/Product Creation

Development of healthy food products by combining proteins and dietary fibers from oats and pulse

  • Project Status: In Progress
  • Principal Investigators: Dr. Lingyun Chen
  • Project Dates: March 2022 - February 2024
  • Abstract/Summary: A dietary pattern that provides plant protein, dietary fiber and low fat has been shown to decrease the risks of chronic diseases (obesity, cardiovascular disease). The high-quality milling oats in Canada are good sources of both dietary fiber and plant protein. The long-term goal of this research is to develop high quality protein and fiber ingredients from oats for healthy food development.
    The short-term objectives in the next 2 years are to develop technology innovations to combine protein and dietary fiber from oats and pulse to fabricate:
    1. Fat replacers for low fat dairy/dairy substitute product development; and
    2. Texturized vegetable protein products for meat analogue applications.
    This research will provide opportunities to add value to oats and pulses as two major crops in western Canada. The food products high in both plant protein and dietary fiber will provide consumers with healthy choices, and help control the prevalence of obesity in the society and lower the risks of chronic disease.

Research Topic: Insect/Disease/Weeds

  • Project Status: In Progress
  • Principal Investigators: Paul Bullock (University of Manitoba) and Randy Kutcher (University of Saskatchewan)
  • Project Dates: April 2018 - March 2023
  • Abstract/Summary: Fusarium head blight (FHB) is a fungal disease affecting cereal crops in Canada that reduces productivity and produces mycotoxins in the grain. This fungal disease is caused by a number of Fusarium species of which Fusarium graminearum is considered the most important because of its abundance, its toxin producing ability and its impact on grain quality and yield. Currently the most important practices recommended to cereal growers for FHB management include non-host crops in the rotation, resistant cultivars, and application of fungicides.

    Cultural management of FHB of cereals, in particular crop rotation or the sequence of crops grown, can play a major role in an integrated management approach to FHB (Gilbert and Haber 2013), as well as many other pest and agronomic issues. However, there are no studies in Canada that clearly indicate the impact on FHB of various cereals due to the previous crop(s) cultivated.

    The goal of this research is to improve yield and quality in Canada through the implementation of effective crop sequences to mitigate FHB.
View Results

Research Topic: Intercropping/Other

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Abstract/Summary: The Government of Saskatchewan, The Government of Manitoba, The Government of Canada and POGA combined efforts in this report to look at barriers to entry and opportunities for oats in Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) countries as well as China.
View Results

Research Topic: Insect/Disease/Weeds

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Principal Investigators: Sheryl A. Tittlemier, Richard Blagden, Jason Chan, Mike Roscoe, Kerri Pleskach
  • Abstract/Summary: This project was a collaborative venture with funding contributed by the Canadian Grain Commission, the Prairie Oat Growers Association, the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, and the Canada-Saskatchewan Growing Forward 2 bi-lateral agreement.
View Results

Research Topic: Nutrition/Product Creation

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Abstract/Summary: One of the project’s primary goals is to demonstrate how the unique functionalities of oats can be used to improve existing products or develop innovative products that can be commercialized.
View Results

Research Topic: Nutrition/Product Creation

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Abstract/Summary: The goal of the project was to promote oats as a healthy food choice, to support nutrition programs in high needs schools and increase awareness of agriculture education programming. A total of 2001 students, 114 staff members and 53 community members participated in the Oats for Breakfast events. View the PDF below for final report.
View Results

Research Topic: Variety/Trials

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Principal Investigators: Dr. Chris Willenborg, Dr. Nancy Ames, Eric Johnson, Moria Kurtenbach, Sid Darras
  • Project Dates: May 1, 2016 to December 1, 2019
  • Abstract/Summary: Applying glyphosate or swathing at or above 50% SMC has negative effects on seed quality and therefore end use capabilities. When treatments were swathed at or above 60%, there is a risk that beta-glucan levels can drop below 3%, the percentage groat will decline, which ultimately impacts milling yield and increases the amount of wastage during the milling process. Compared to direct combining without glyphosate, there appears to be no effect on oat quality when glyphosate is applied ≤40% SMC. Across all site years, oat cultivar did not have as much of an impact as the other two factors (i.e. seeding rate and harvest method) did. Increasing seeding rates resulted in a reduction in SMC at harvest, lower TKWs, and softer groats. Overall Pinnacle was less affected by changes in harvest method in regards to percent plump and thin kernels. CDC Dancer had an increase in thin kernels and a decrease in plump kernels when plots were swathed. Using glyphosate as a harvest method has no more of a negative impact than swathing on oat yield or seed quality, regardless of seeding rate or cultivar used. It is plausible that pre-harvest glyphosate had a greater impact on perennial weed control than in-season herbicides used. Dandelion populations were generally higher when a post-emergent herbicide was used alone. View the PDF below for final report.
View Results

Research Topic: Variety/Trials

  • Project Status: In Progress
  • Principal Investigators: Government of Alberta
  • Project Dates: 2018 - ongoing
  • Abstract/Summary: This Alberta Regional Variety trial is lead by the Government of Alberta. For any additional information please contact the Government of Alberta.
View Results

Research Topic: Variety/Trials

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Principal Investigators: Xiao Qiu
  • Abstract/Summary: Avenanthramides are a group of N-cinnamolyanthranilic acids comprising anthranilic acid and cinnamic acid connected by an amide linkage with health-promoting properties mainly found in oat (Avena sativa L.). In this research, avenanthramide A, B and C (Avn-A, B and C), the three most abundant avenanthramides (Avns) in oat, were identified and quantified from oat varieties. Subsequently, in vitro antioxidant activities of oat extracts and Avn-A, B and C were evaluated, and Avn-C had the highest in vitro antioxidant activity among the three avenanthramides. To investigate the cytoprotective activity of Avns, normal human skin fibroblasts (2DD) were treated with Avn C followed by exposure to extracellular stress and its ability to reduce cellular damage was determined. Pre-treatment of cells with Avn-C reduced hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-induced oxidative stress significantly as demonstrated by decreased intracellular free radical levels and antioxidant gene transcripts. Avn-C pre-treatment also resulted in decreased levels of gene transcripts encoding pro-inflammatory cytokines in response to H2O2 or tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) stimulation. This reduction in cytokine gene transcription occurred concomitantly with reduced phosphorylated nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) p65, indicating reduced pro-inflammatory response. To better understand the mechanisms of actions, the impact of Avn-C on cellular signaling pathways was investigated on Avn C-treated 2DD cells without exposure to stress. Avn-C was found to induce heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) expression through increased DNA-Nrf2 binding activity. Also, it reduced basal levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines through decreased DNA-NF-κB binding activity. Moreover, anti-proliferative effect of Avn C on 2DD cells was observed via mechanisms independent of autophagy activation. Collectively, our findings suggest that Avn-C protects normal human skin fibroblasts against oxidative stress and inflammatory response through Nrf2/HO-1 activation and NF-κB inhibition.
View Results

Research Topic: Insect/Disease/Weeds

  • Project Status: Completed
  • Abstract/Summary: Over the four years (2014-2017) that field surveys were conducted in commercial oat fields to evaluate the prevalence of oat leaf blotch pathogens P. avenae was the most often identified, being present in 59% of the 160 fields surveyed. Cochliobolus sativus was present in 23% of surveyed fields while S. avenae was only identified in 3% of fields. The ranking prevalence of these pathogens was consistent across all four years and differs from prior surveys conducted where S. avenae was observed in all years and with greater prevalence than C. sativus in most years (2011-2013).
View Results
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