Seed World

Why Barley is a Labour of Love for Ana Badea

Some researchers are driven not just by academic interest, but by a deep-rooted connection to their subject matter. Ana Badea, the new chair of the Prairie Grain Development Committee (PGDC) and a barley breeder at AAFC Brandon, exemplifies this sentiment. With a familial history intertwined with barley cultivation, her journey in the field has been nothing short of a labour of love.

“I always had a soft spot for barley,” Badea says. “So when I was asked what crop I would like to work on for my PhD, and barley was one option, that was not a very difficult decision for me to make.”

One of the platforms through which Badea contributes to the discourse in plant breeding is the PGDC forum. For her, PGDC serves as more than just a space for discussion; it’s a cornerstone for industry growth and collaboration.

However, like any endeavour, PGDC faces its share of challenges. Badea acknowledges the need to streamline meetings and address capacity issues to ensure efficiency and inclusivity within the organization.

Despite the challenges, Badea’s passion for science remains undiminished. Whether it’s discussing innovative approaches to barley processing or exploring cutting-edge gene editing techniques, she finds inspiration in the diverse facets of agricultural research.

“I get very excited when it comes to science,” Badea says. “I love both the applicable side of science as well as the upstream research. Whether it’s making agriculture more sustainable or delving into the intricacies of gene editing, there’s always something new to learn and explore.”