Peace Region Living Lab strengthens its on-farm innovation and research activities and knowledge, sharing events in the Peace Region with the support of a financial contribution from food and agriculture company, Cargill.
As a key connector of the food system, Cargill has the unique ability to drive sustainable impact at scale - from farm to fork, working with farmers and partners each step of the way. To feed a growing global population, partnership with farmers is critical and programs like Peace Region Living Lab does just that, providing farmers the opportunity to pilot sustainable agriculture practices, share insights on soil health measurements, and a forum to discuss with others.
The Peace Region Living Lab (PRLL) is part of a federal initiative and network of living labs across Canada, which uses a producer centred approach to agricultural innovation. The program brings together farmers and ranchers with scientists and commodity groups to co-develop and test innovative practices and technologies focused on mitigating and adapting to climate change by sequestering carbon and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Other environmental co-benefits include protecting soil and water quality and maximizing biodiversity in agricultural landscapes. Funding for this project has been provided in part by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) through the Agricultural Climate Solutions – Living Labs program.
The PRLL is unique in that it encompasses the BC and Alberta Peace region, making it the only interprovincial living lab in AAFC’s network. The Peace Region Forage Seed Association is the lead organization of the PRLL, which also includes eight other Peace Region producer groups: Peace River Forage Association of BC, BC Grain Producers Association, Fourth Sister Farm, North Peace Applied Research Association, Mackenzie Applied Research Association, SARDA Ag Research, the Peace Country Beef & Forage Association, and the Peace Region Food Action Hub & Agricultural Extension Institute.
Cargill and PRLL believe that farmers are at the heart of the food supply chain, and their experiences and learnings are critical. This is why peer-to-peer sharing of sustainable and regenerative agricultural practices is a large part of this program. Farmers and ranchers need to know that new practices can work on their land given their unique climate and ecosystems. On-farm experimentation carries risks, and agricultural earning margins are narrow with little room for error. Being able to see practices applied is a key step in supporting farmers and ranchers who wish to adopt proven practices. The 57 farmers and ranchers partnering with the PRLL have made a commitment to sharing their experience of applying, testing and improving beneficial management practices on their operations through on-farm