Alta. research funded on straw, chaff processing

Research in Alberta on ways in which farmers can convert their straw and chaff into other saleable products will get over $116,000 in federal funds.

The Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food program, run by the federal agriculture department, will put up $116,375 for work by Olds AgTech Industries, researching how farmers can process straw and chaff into “standardized materials.”

Those materials could then be put to work in oilsands soil remediation, erosion control, hydroponic mulch, and solid fuels such as fire logs, the government said in a release Tuesday.

“The results of this study will benefit not only the bio-industry, but also the producers who will have a market for their crop residue,” Olds AgTech president Blair Wright said in the government’s release. “New fibre feedstock plants could also lead to permanent employment in rural Alberta.”

“The bio-products industry offers a unique opportunity for producers to create and participate in related and supporting business ventures,” said Dee Ann Benard, chair of Agriculture and Food Council of Alberta, which delivers ACAAF funds in the province.

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