Deadline Extended to Nov 5: Calling All Ontario Hop Growers – We Need Your Help!

As reported during the September ONHoppenings webinar, OMAFRA is currently developing a Brewers Guide to Ontario-Grown Hop Varieties in collaboration with the Ontario Hop Growers’ Association (OHGA) and the Ontario Craft Brewers (OCB) to assist with marketing Ontario-grown hops.

Background: Feedback we’ve received over the past year has suggested that brewers do not know about the diversity of hop varieties grown in Ontario or where to source them. The intent of the guide is to provide a current list of Ontario-grown hop varieties and basic brewing values to assist brewers in planning their recipes and sourcing more Ontario-grown hops. The guide will be updated biennially to capture any new varieties being grown in the province and to expand the brewing values information as it becomes available after each harvest year.

We need your help!

In order to have the most up to date information for the guide, we are asking for your input.

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Job Posting: Summer Research Assistants for OMAFRA in Simcoe

Organization:                        Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

Division/Branch:                   Economic Development Division / Agriculture Development Branch

Position Title:                        Student – Summer Research Assistant

Job Term:                              Temporary (6 positions) up to 14 weeks

Location:                                OMAFRA Simcoe Resource Centre, Simcoe, Ontario (Norfolk County, on the north shore of Lake Erie, 2 hours southwest of Toronto)

Salary:                                    $15.20 / hour based on a 36.25 hour work week

Are you serious about making your mark, getting hands-on work experience and learning more about careers in the Ontario Public Service?  These positions at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs’ Simcoe Resource Centre will provide an excellent opportunity for those interested in a career in horticulture production, research or the agricultural service sector. These positions will provide the opportunity to learn about diseases, insects, and agronomy of the major field horticulture crops and specialty crops grown in the province.

Duties:

  • Assist with summer research and demonstration projects conducted by Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) Horticulture and Specialty Crops Staff.
  • Activities will include the set-up and maintenance (weeding, planting, etc.) of research plots focused on production practices, soil health, weed control, pest management, and fertility etc., collection/entering of data and preparation of written reports. Training will be provided on research methods, technology transfer, and working in the public sector
  • Collecting, archiving and organizing digital photos of key growth stages and major pests of horticultural and specialty crops such as strawberries, tree fruit, hops, lavender, ginseng, sweet potatoes and industrial crops
  • Field work may include farm tours, field scouting, identification and monitoring of insects, weeds and crop diseases.
  • Assist staff with the collection and analysis of on-farm samples and data for research projects.
  • Assist staff to conduct literature reviews and develop written reports and presentation materials on key initiatives and industry issues.
  • Assist in the coordination of events and programs (e.g. workshops, demonstrations, field days etc.) working with key stakeholders and clients in delivery of programs and information.
  • Office work may include assisting with the production of technical information such as newsletters, updating web pages, blogs, scanning images, etc.

Please review the qualifications for this position. What we are looking for: 

  • You apply your interpersonal skills to work within a multi-disciplinary team
  • You apply your observational skills and attention to detail to conduct research, field monitoring and data entry
  • You apply your written communication skills to prepare a variety of documents (e.g. reports, factsheets, and articles).
  • You are familiar with computer based software applications including MS Word, MS Excel and database management software to perform data entry, conduct analysis, prepare reports, track and compile information
  • You can work in an outdoor environment with physical activity involved
  • You work independently or as part of a team; you plan, organize and prioritize your work to meet competing deadlines
  • You are familiar with farming and crop production
  • You are willing to travel to rural locations (frequently not accessible by public transportation)
  • You must have a minimum Ontario G2 Driver’s Licence

Effective October 1, 2021, the OPS COVID-19 Safe Workplace Directive will require all Ontario Public Service employees to provide proof they are fully vaccinated, meaning they are fully vaccinated as defined by the Ministry of Health (refer to: COVID-19 Fully Vaccinated Status in Ontario), including 14 calendar days have passed since receiving their final dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Employees who do not provide proof of full vaccination will be deemed ‘not vaccinated` under the Directive and will be required to attend a vaccine education program and undergo regular rapid antigen testing. Employees who are not vaccinated under the policy with a valid medical exemption will not be required to attend a vaccine education program.

How to Apply:

  • You must demonstrate how you meet the eligibility criteria, skills and experience we are looking for clearly, completely and concisely. We rely on the information you provide to us.
  • You must be a resident of Ontario on the first day of employment.
  • You must be legally entitled to work in Canada.
  • You must be between 15-24 years of age (up to 29 with disability) on the first day of employment.
  • You must be currently enrolled in a secondary or post-secondary school, or have completed all academic requirements for graduation within 6 months of first day of employment.
  • You must provide your cover letter and resume electronically in one file to jacquie.defields@ontario.ca in any of the following formats: PDF, WORD, plain or rich-text format (.pdf, .doc, .docx, .txt and .rtf).  Or you could provide your cover letter and resume on paper to:

Jacquie DeFields
OMAFRA
Simcoe Resource Centre
1283 Blueline Road,
Box 587 Simcoe, Ontario N3Y 4N5
Tel: 226-992-9403

You should receive confirmation within 2 business days if your application was received. If you do not receive a confirmation in that time, please call Jacquie DeFields.

If you have a disability and require accommodation to apply please contact Jacquie.defields@ontario.ca.

Posting Date: November 22, 2021

Closing Date: December 13, 2021

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Ginseng Pesticide and Research Prioritization Meeting – Dec. 2

The Ginseng Pesticide and Research Prioritization Meeting will continue this year as a Zoom meeting. This is an opportunity to discuss the production issues over the past year, establish research priorities for the coming year and to prioritize products for the minor use system. An update will be provided on products currently in the minor use system and any research applicable to the discussion. Please note, we recognize that some growers are still busy at that time of year, but this is the latest the meeting can be held to meet the deadlines of the minor use system.

When: Thurs., Dec. 2, 2021

Time: 9:00 to approx. 11:00 am

Where: Online via Zoom conferencing

Pre-registration is required to get the link to the meeting. OGGA members have received the Zoom link in an email from OGGA. Anyone else interested in participating can email Sean Westerveld at sean.westerveld@ontario.ca or Michelle Murphy at info@ginsengontario.com and the Zoom link will be sent to you.

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Late Fall Disease Management for Ginseng – Ginseng Crop Update October 27, 2021

It should come as no surprise to ginseng growers that it has been exceptionally wet this year since the beginning of June and especially this fall. Don’t take my word for it. Figure 1 shows a map of precipitation relative to normal for the past 90 days. The entire ginseng production area is indicated at “exceptionally high” and falls within the 98th to 100th percentile. This means that precipitation this far above normal for that period of time would only be expected to occur in a maximum of 2 in every 100 years. Most of the ginseng production area is also in the exceptionally wet zone for the past 180 days (Figure 2).

Map of Central Canada showing the ginseng production area of southern Ontario within the 98th to 100th percentile compared to normal for the 90 day period ending on October 25
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Control of Scentless Chamomile in Ginseng

Growers are reporting increasing issues dealing with scentless chamomile in ginseng, which has become a problem weed in many crops. Scentless chamomile (Matricaria perforata), also known as scentless mayweed, is a short-lived perennial or sometimes annual, closely resembling stinking mayweed, with its large yellow-centered flower heads with white ray florets, but it is usually taller (up to 75 cm, 30 in.) and more branched (Figure 1). It also resembles pineappleweed. Its stems below the flower heads are smooth and hairless, and the whole plant is virtually without odour (unlike pineappleweed or stinking mayweed). Scentless chamomile can grow effectively at very low temperatures, so plants that are small at this time of year can be very large by the time the snow is gone in the spring.

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Canadian Haskap Symposium – Oct 20 and 27, 2021

The Quebec Reference Center for Agriculture and Agri-food (CRAAQ) will be hosting the first Canadian Haskap Symposium in a series of online speaker sessions over two dates, October 20 and 27, 2021.

The symposium will cover topics such as the development of new varieties, production requirements, post-harvest storage, and marketing.

Registration is $75 + tax for the entire symposium.

For complete details, speaker biographies, and registration, please visit the symposium website at: Canadian Haskap Symposium (craaq.qc.ca)

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