MARA is also hosting a few small demonstration plots for testing out a diverse set of crops like fodder Galega (Goats Rue), Sunn Hemp (Crotalaria juncea), sorghum and camelina to see the performance of the crops in this region.

The diverse group of annual crops can be planted to supplement the perennial forage system to meet the dairy and livestock producers need. MARA has planted 4 blocks of annuals which consists of cereals, pulse-cereal mixes, spring-winter cereal mix and cover crop mixes (cocktail crops) to evaluate the potential of the annuals in supplementing the perennial forage systems to give the system a break for recovery as well as providing an opportunity of the land for cash crop instead of committing it for perennials for multiple years.

As a novel specialty crop for this region, Canary Seed can be used as bird feed, hay and human consumption. MARA has been able to source some seed from the University of Saskatchewan to test the production potential of 4 commercially released varieties in Northern Alberta.

For a long time, the producers in the region have shown interest in growing soft white wheat (especially for the organic industry) and MARA is excited to test out 4 varieties of soft white wheat under organic and conventional systems this year. The seed of the 4 varieties (AAC Awesome, Sadash, AAC Andrew and AAC Paramount) have been sourced from the AAFC station in Lethbridge.

ATG offers agricultural technologies and products based on the latest research, meeting the needs of the producers across the province and country. MARA is testing out the effect of ATG foliar sprays and supplements in canola yield this year.

MARA is collaborating with HumaTerra to test out the long term impact of their microbial bio-inoculants commonly known as H-Start products on the soil and crop comparison to conventional fertility regimes. We are testing their products on cereals (wheat and barley) and canola. The project will run for three years and will include benchmark soil sampling in the first and third year, as well as regular soil sampling for nutrient and microbial evaluations each year.

Polysulphate Premium is a slow releasing, natural multi nutrient Sulfur fertilizer and is also composed of K, Mg, and Ca which can be used for both organic and conventional systems of production. It  provides balanced nutrients uniformly over the season for consistent crop development. MARA is testing out Polysulphate Premium on Morgan Oats and 4 varieties of Soft White Wheat under both conventional and organic systems.

UreaMST is a co-granulated fertilizer containing Micronized Sulfur Technology (MST) from Sulvaris. MARA is hosting a site to evaluate the nutrient efficiency of Sulfur and Nitrogen in scenarios related to Western Canadian growers (with respect to variable soil conditions like high pH, low sulfur and organic matter). We are testing a few other products with Sulvaris along with UreaMST in canola this year.

AWC is funding another trial to evaluate the yield and quality (protein) of 4 varieties of wheat which will be seeded at different seeding rates in the Peace Region. This project builds up on the previous similar projects conducted in previous years (2019-2021) in the region with only two varieties (AAC Brandon and AAC Connery) and is including two more varieties (AAC Viewfield and AAC Redberry). AAC Viewfield is slightly higher yielding than AAC Brandon while Redberry is an early maturing variety (three days earlier than AAC Brandon). MARA is partnering with NPARA and SARDA to evaluate this trial at three sites across the Peace region.

Alberta Wheat Commission (AWC) is partnering with Applied Research Associations for evaluating the Impact of different nitrogen release fertilizers on wheat yield and protein. NPARA, SARDA and MARA are hosting sites for this trial where the N- Enhanced efficiency fertilizers (EEF) like ESN and Super U will be tested against Urea. It focuses on exploring the effects of different EEF set at different rate and placed banded at different developmental stages. MARA is evaluating the effects EEF side banded at seeding stage at  70% and 100% recommended rate.