What do asparagus, cannabis, apples and wheat have in common? All of these and more will be major themes of this year’s National Association of Plant Breeders (NAPB) and Plant Breeding Coordinating Committee (PBCC) annual meetings scheduled for Aug. 7-10 at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada.

Don’t miss your chance to hear a variety of speakers who will talk about:

  • The main components of an asparagus breeding program and highlight the important considerations that distinguish this vegetable from annual field crops. Presentation by David Wolyn of the University of Guelph
  • How we can bring genomics and modern breeding tools to the cannabis industry. With recreational cannabis set to be legalized in Canada this year and with the product already legal in a number of U.S. states, Greg Baute of the British Columbia-based Anandia Labs will discuss how we can enable access to high-quality varieties that are optimized for large-scale production.
  • How we can harness diversity for genetic improvement in apples. Susan K. Brown, professor of agriculture and life science at Cornell University, will show how the sequenced genome and many multi-disciplinary, cooperative research projects, such as RosBREED and FruitBreedomics, further our resources to effectively harness this diversity for genetic improvement of one of our favourite fruits.
  • Challenges and successes associated with breeding winter wheat for Western Canada. Anita Brûlé-Babel of the Department of Plant Science at the University of Manitoba will talk about how cultivar development has been a key factor in improving the viability of winter wheat production in Western Canada.

The event will feature a variety of other highlights including:

  • Reception and banquet featuring local bands
  • Pre-conference tour of the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre. A highly-skilled research team will demonstrate some leading-edge projects and breeding programs including sweet potatoes, apples, tomatoes and roses.  You will hear about Vineland’s consumer insights & tomato flavour research, which assists to help guide the development of new tomato varieties.
  • Field tours at the Elora Research Station. Tour stops will include soybean, cereals, dry bean, corn, and Russian dandelion breeding programs, the recently completed “big data” dairy barn, and the DNA Barcoding Biobus.
  • Poster sessions and one-minute poster introductions
  • Award talks and 2018 awards

Although the early bird registration deadline has passed, registrations are accepted until July 27, 2018. Visit https://www.plant.uoguelph.ca/napb2018 for info and to register!

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