It is still too early to tell but researchers are looking at whether rice could soon become a crop in Southern Alberta. An irrigated crop scientist out of the University of Lethbridge along with Galaxy Ag Ventures are looking at ways to potentially add rice as a crop to this region as it has been known to grow in other parts of the country.
“The Galaxy AG Ventures is very interested in exploring waste production here because they have markets for rice by-products. So the value-added ingredients from rice production like starch, oil, and protein can be extracted from rice that is inherently gluten-free. So I think the company has an idea, the big picture idea of where they want to go with this. Obviously, they could import rice to use for this purpose that if they can grow it here they would reduce transportation costs and they contribute to our agricultural economy in a different way,” said Michele Konschuh, Irrigated Crop Scientist from the University of Lethbridge.
A pilot project is currently taking place out in the field which will be wrapping up at the end of the year.