b'A NEW TOOL HELPING YOU IN THE REALM OF RETAIL SEED SALES.REGIONAL VARIETY TRIALS: HOW DO WE ADAPT TO CHANGE AND CHART A COURSE FORWARD?Marc ZienkiewiczPROVINCE BY PROVINCE, theEllen, you have a lot of experience with some of the changes that have national framework for con- happened in Ontario with regards to how the variety trials are con-ducting variety trials is chang- ducted, whats worked, whats been a challenge, etc. Can you give us a ing. These trials remain anlittle bit of a history on how the variety trial framework in Ontario has important tool for the seedEllen Sparry changed, and how you got involved and how it works exactly?industry and its farmer custom- Coordinator,I have been a participant and a member of the Ontario Cereal ers. We learned a lot from ourOntarioCrop Committee going back to the mid 1980s. Around that time, webinar, including: Performancein the East, in particular, the AAFC stations had some fundingHow funding changesTrials for Cereals cuts that resulted in them no longer being able to look after that have led to changes in varietyGeneral Manager,coordination. trial frameworks in Ontario,C&M Seeds Around 1999 or 2000, there was a review of the commit-Alberta and Saskatchewan tees changing role and their mandate, and how they could moveWhy producer groups likeforward to ensure Ontario farmers had access to the best possible SaskBarley are looking at waysvarieties, and also the best data on the performance of those vari-of offering enhanced data toeties. There was an increasing role by the private sector in breed-producers that go beyond whating and variety evaluation, too. is currently offered in seed guides What have been some big benefits to this new way of doing things? Who owns the data cre- Weve been able to adapt and respond to the needs of producers ated during regional varietyover time, incorporate feedback and implement changes to better trials and how its disseminated serve the industry. Its important to have access to this kind of information to make informed decisions about which varieties to plant and how to manage crops. What are some hurdles youve had to get over?POLLS Funding can be a challenge at times, but the trials are able to sus-tain themselves through sponsor fees and support from organiza-Is data accessibility in regard to variety trialtions like Grain Farmers of Ontario, BASF, Bayer and Syngenta. results a concern for you? Despite the challenges that can arise from weather and workload for trial cooperators, the team works cooperatively to overcome obstacles and maintain valuable data for producers. Inspection of 57% 43% the trials provides an opportunity for learning and problem-solv-ing among trial cooperators.Yes NoWho owns the trial data and how is it distributed?The data is owned by the committee, and we have publica-tion guidelines. Data from the performance trials is accessible to This article has been shortened for length. Watchanyone and those guidelines ensure that the data is presented in a the on-demand version of our recent webinar atconsistent way. The Ontario Seed Guide is a valuable resource for germination.ca/rvts for the whole story! producers to have all the information they need in one place.48GERMINATION.CAMARCH 2023'