Call for Expressions of Interest: Canadian AgriScience Cluster for Horticulture - National Research & Innovation Priorities for Potatoes

The Canadian Horticultural Council (CHC) is an Ottawa-based voluntary, not-for-profit, national association that represents fruit and vegetable growers across Canada involved in the production of over 120 different types of crops on over 14,237 farms, with farm cash receipts of $5.4 billion in 2019. Since 1922, CHC has advocated on important issues that impact Canada’s horticultural sector, promoting healthy, safe and sustainable food, and ensuring the continued success and growth of our industry.

CHC is actively preparing for the opportunity to establish a fourth Canadian AgriScience Cluster for Horticulture under Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) next agricultural policy framework for 2023-2028.

AgriScience Clusters are intended to mobilize industry, government and academia through partnerships, and address priority themes and horizontal issues that are national in scope.

In recent months, CHC has consulted with industry members through our commodity working groups to update National Research and Innovation Priorities.


At this time, we are seeking Expressions of Interest from Canadian researchers who would like the opportunity to participate in the Canadian AgriScience Cluster for Horticulture 4 in the following Research and Innovation priority areas (including but not limited to) for the potato industry:


Key Priority Area

Strategic Outcome

Strategic Objectives


Statement of the desired outcome (or end state)

Statement of objective(s) required to achieve the desired state

Soil Health and Regenerative Agriculture

High priority

A systems approach that optimizes productivity while maintaining or enhancing soil health.


Improve soil health, marketable yield, and quality by integration of alternative crops, cover crops, tillage, and/ or other innovative or regenerative practices into potato production systems.


Irrigation Management and Water Use Efficiency

High priority

Regional best management practices for the sustainable  use of water that supports the production of high-quality potatoes, while mitigating production risks due to climate change.

Develop water management BMPs to increase water use efficiency such as the use of new technology to monitor and manage irrigation programs, including variable rate..  Research on irrigation management needs to focus on availability, measurement, and management.


Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Environmental Performance, and On-farm Adaptations

High priority

Enhanced agronomic practices that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and strengthens the environmental performance of potato production in Canada. 


To conduct research in agronomic practices leading to the optimal use of inputs with specific emphasis on 4R Nitrogen management and N2O reductions; soil and nutrient conservation; carbon sequestration.


Variety Development

High priority



A comprehensive variety development program is in place responding to environmental pressures, resource scarcity and customer preferences.


To coordinate an ongoing variety development research program including a national evaluation program which can lead to varieties that have increased resistance characteristics to disease and pests, and /or; require reduced inputs (nutrients, water, etc.), and/or; provide improvement in taste, appearance, ease of storage and processing characteristics.


Communication and Research Extension

High priority

Research priorities and results are communicated to Canadian Growers


The application of research results is facilitated through a variety of programs and support.

To ensure all research proposals have extension mechanisms in place to facilitate transfer of knowledge and technologies to industry members;

To develop and implement communication tools and mechanisms to inform industry members on the research priorities, progress made on the priorities and results of the research efforts;

To embed a research extension capacity within all national potato research and innovation projects. 

 Please complete the attached Expressions of Interest Form and return it to CHC by end of business February 28, 2022, via email to: with the subject line: POTATO – EOI – YOUR NAME.



Additional calls for Expressions of Interest have been sent out for Apple, Berry, Field Vegetable and Greenhouse Vegetable in December 2021 (deadline: January 30 ,2022)

Please visit the CHC website for more details:

All Expressions of Interest will be reviewed by the CHC’s Canadian Potato Council in early March 2022. Activities selected to move forward to the Request for Proposal stage will be contacted mid-March.

It is important to note that funding will be pending AAFC’s announcement of the next AgriScience Cluster program, expected in late 2022. There is no guarantee of funding at this point.

In the interests of improved coordination, collaboration and funding efficiency, CHC reserves the right to share LOIs with other research funders and/or Clusters.

Please feel free to forward this email on to other interested researchers and industry contacts.

If you require any assistance in preparing your EOI or have any questions regarding the Cluster application process, please do not hesitate to contact me at

Thank you for your interest in the Canadian AgriScience Cluster for Horticulture.



Agency Name: 
Canadian Horticulture Council
Contact Name: 
Brandie Lea
Grant Amount: 
Grant Location: 
External Deadline: 
Monday, February 28, 2022
Internal Deadline: 
Thursday, February 17, 2022
Grant Type: 
Grant Area: 
Grant Eligibility: