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Ontario Grain Farmer Magazine is the flagship publication of Grain Farmers of Ontario and a source of information for our province’s grain farmers. 

Research roundup


Rebecca Hannam
Some diets urge limiting carbohydrates, but researchers at the University of Guelph say the opposite – bread contains nutrients essential to everyone, they claim, and don’t advocate cutting back.


Dr. Terry Graham, Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences, says some kinds of bread have added health benefits.

He’s found sourdough white bread has the most health benefits for controlling blood sugar and insulin responses, compared to white, whole wheat and whole wheat-barley breads.

Graham says producers may benefit from an expected market growth for artisan breads.

“With this research, farmers can be reassured that there is a good news story associated with wheat products and health,” says Graham. 

He’s now studying wheat products as part of a five-year project examining the health benefits of various breads.  He’s studying whole grain and sprouted grain bread products, to compare health findings.

This research is funded by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. •

Alycia Moore
Waterhemp, an aggressive annual weed in corn and soybeans, can devastate a crop. It infests less than one percent of the land in production in Ontario, but yield losses of up to 72 percent in corn and up to 56 percent in soybeans have been reported where waterhemp was  not controlled. 

Unfortunately, it’s expected to spread in Ontario, similar to the midwest United States where it’s a problem.

Research conducted by personnel from the University of Guelph Ridgetown Campus has identified control strategies for waterhemp in Ontario.

“Waterhemp has a late and extended emergence pattern, and a high level of seed production compared to other weeds,” says Dr. Peter Sikkema from the Department of Plant Agriculture. “Additionally, prior studies in the United States have concluded that waterhemp is resistant to several herbicides.”

University of Guelph researchers conducted several trials between 2003 and 2006, in Ontario fields with biotypes that were resistant to Group 2 and 5 herbicides. 

In the best-case scenarios, waterhemp control was as high as 90 to 99 percent. In corn, Converge or a tankmix Primextra + Callisto applied pre emergence and Marksman or tankmix Callisto + Atrazine applied post emergence all provided greater than 90 percent control.

In soybeans, a two-pass program of  either Boundary or Frontier applied pre emergence followed by either Blazer or Reflex provided the best full season control. Glyphosate provides excellent control in Roundup Ready crops.

This research has been funded by the Ontario Soybean Growers and the  Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. •

Research Roundup is provided by members of SPARK (Students Promoting Awareness of Research Knowledge) at the University of Guelph’s Office of Research.  For more information, contact a SPARK writer at 519-824-4120, ext. 52667.


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