Crop Development and Management

Latest News

  • Hemp ties strengthen Alberta-China relationship

    InnoTech Alberta and the Heilongjiang Academy of Sciences (HAS) have entered into a partnership for the development of hemp as a crop and bioproduct. HAS scoured the globe for a hemp partner and settled on InnoTech as its top choice for achieving the joint Albertan and Chinese goals...

  • Industrial hemp acres on the rise, especially in southern Alberta

    Industrial hemp has a huge variety of uses, and is gaining new markets for both seeds and fibre. Alberta is at the forefront, says Jan Slaski, researcher at InnoTech Alberta, who has been helping to develop the crop for more than a decade

  • Industrial hemp as new Alberta crop and fibre feedstock

    An old-world fibre crop is being resurrected as a modern-day super plant by scientists at InnoTech Alberta. Research and development at InnoTech's Vegreville facility shows the potential for industrial hemp to become a productive cash crop for Alberta farmers, as well as a sustainable raw-material for industrial products and processes...

  • Diagnostic testing for canola plants and seeds

    InnoTech Alberta scientists are leading a comprehensive Canada-wide survey gathering data on Canadian canola, in response to a request by China. The survey will establish a baseline against which future blackleg surveillance can be compared and studied. The project is part of a Canada-China cooperative studies initiative to prevent the transfer of blackleg in canola crops...

  • Hemp fashion show

  • Agriculture fibres into specialty book paper

    Residual flax straw from oilseed production was sourced from farms in east-central Alberta and processed at the Alberta Biomaterials Development Centre’s pilot-scale decortication system at the InnoTech facility in Vegreville. The resulting flax fibre was mechanically pulped and peroxide-bleached in InnoTech’s pulping facility in Edmonton and shipped to Cascades’ specialty paper mill in St-Jérôme, Québec where it was blended with imported wheat straw pulp and recycled wood fibre pulp before being formed into paper...



The Crop Development and Management team applies molecular, genetic, and microbiological tools to solve problems in abiotic stress, plant disease, and biosafety, related to maximizing grain and fibre yield.

The Crop Development and Management team operates under the Food and Fibre sector. InnoTech Alberta also performs research in Crop Pathology and Biotechnology.

The Feedstock Development program works with industry, government and others by facilitating the profitability and sustainability of Alberta’s $4.4 billion crop industry, with an emphasis on crops with industrial applications, particularly the nascent bast fibre crops (hemp and flax). We do this by identifying and developing technologies and services that exploit unique properties of microbes and plants.

An important focus is on mitigation or prevention of biotic (crop diseases) and abiotic (drought, cold) stresses. The program also supports Alberta’s fibre and nanotechnology strategies by providing microbe based biomolecules or processes that enable production of innovative products, or make production more economical or safer.

Key activities are:

  • Industrial crops development for fibres and functional foods
  • Strategies and technologies that improve water and nutrient use efficiencies to enhance the productivity of Alberta field crops and industrial feedstocks
  • Plant disease mitigation tools
  • Biopesticides development (bioherbicides, biocontrol)
  • Bio-assembled nanometals
  • Bioconversion technologies (including enzyme discovery, bench-scale fermentation products)


For more information, contact:

Jan Slaski
Team Lead
Crop Development and Management