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Technology Evaluation and Development (TED)
Sub-Program


Centered at Agriculture Canada's Harrow, Ontario, Research Station, this project provided funding for the development, adaption, evaluation and the opportunity for validation of new or untested technology related to soil productivity and to phosphorus and chemical movement from cropland to water systems. The areas covered under soil productivity included soil and water conservation cropping, conservation planting, conservation tillage equipment, and soil drainage. Where possible, it was conducted with the co-operation of farmers under commercial farm conditions.

 

List of TED Research Reports - The majority of the SWEEP reports are in this group.

Original Sub-Program Description

Overview and Synthesis:

SWEEP Report #61 presented an overview of the TED sub-program and a synthesis of the research conducted. Extracts of this report are provided as follows:

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Responsibility: Federal Government

Budget: $6.8 Million (TED + FLEA) - $6,139,700 spent

Original Sub-Program Description:

  1. To develop, test and evaluate new technologies that might be used to address water quality and soil productivity issues and phosphorus movement cropland to water systems.
  2. To determine suitability, adoptability and economic viability of new technologies for commercial farmers that have high probability for success on commercial farms.
  3. Activities to address:
    • Conservation cropping, planting and tillage equipment.
    • Soil drainage and integrated pest management related to chemical movement to water systems, under commercial farm conditions with commercial farmers.
  4. Funding will support development and implementation of individual projects, compensation for co-operating farmers, preparation of reports and communication of results.

Contractor: Ecological Services For Planning, Guelph, Ontario

 

Background:

The Technology Evaluation and Development (TED) Subprogram of the Soil and Water Environmental Enhancement Program (SWEEP) ran from February of 1987 until September of 1992. This final report presents a summary of the subprogram.

The TED program was successful in responding to the research priorities identified during a detailed planning process. The planned research was implemented and completed on budget and on schedule making efficient use of a range of research capabilities throughout the province. The available research funds were equitably distributed between research institutions, such as the University of Guelph and the private sector. A number of productive joint ventures between research institutions, private sector contractors and active farmers were encouraged and supported Regular review of the program progress with the Technical Advisory Panel resulted in modifications and research enhancements which improved the focus and overall achievement of the program objectives. Communication of research results and opportunity for input was provided to a wide range of interest through the use of Progress Summary Bulletins and research conferences.

The TED subprogram of SWEEP was conceived, developed and delivered as a cooperative venture between farmers, research scientists and administrative personnel. Any success which the TED subprogram achieved was due to the tremendous cooperation of individuals within these different groups.

Of the 53 research projects funded by TED, 21 (40%) were awarded in response to the formal Request for Proposal procedure, while 32 (60%) were awarded as a result of unsolicited proposals. Work conducted as a result of unsolicited proposals had to be justified by a demonstrated need for the knowledge which the work would provide.

The TED subprogram was given a mandate to focus on research conducted at the farm scale. Nearly 78% of all the research money spent during the TED subprogram was spent on projects which were conducted on viable commercial farms. In addition, an additional 5.5% of the research money was spent on studies which used a combination of farm and research station resources. Two hundred and thirty-five farmers were directly contacted through the TED program. Of these 235 individuals, 148 were directly involved in some component of the TED research. One of the first projects awarded under TED was a survey of conservation practices being tested, revised and adopted by leading farmers in Ontario. This study was valuable to TED in refining the farmer position on research priorities and identifying a resource group of advisors and research cooperators.

In addition to supporting, strengthening and enlarging the network of farmer-to-farmer communication about conservation practices, the TED program assisted in the training and professional development of a number of technicians, researchers and research groups.

TED identified a need for tools which would assist farmers in reducing the risks associated with the transition from conventional to conservation farming. Means of providing these tools were explored to some extent at the TED Modelling Workshop held on November, 1988. An existing approach which showed the greatest promise was developed by ROBBERT ASSOCIATES, and derived from a five year program in Statistics Canada to develop a socioeconomic resource framework. The promise shown by the first phase of the project conducted under TED clearly indicates a potential for meeting the established guidelines outlined above.

 

 

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Created: 04-10-1996
Last Updated: Thursday, May 19, 2011 11:09:35 AM