Three Albertans Picked as Nuffield Scholars

by | Nov 30, 2022 | News

Three Albertans, Kirk Zembal, Craig Lester and Emily Ford, have been chosen as this year’s Nuffield Canada scholars, a Nov. 17 news release says.

Zembal is a co-founder and co-owner of Blindman Brewing which is a craft brewery located in Lacombe, Alta.  He plans to study how to create value for grain and oilseed growers in the rapidly changing

Kirk Zembal

Kirk Zembal, co-founder and co-owner of Blindman Brewing

sustainability and carbon pricing landscape, the release said. Zembal’s sponsor is the Canadian Canola Growers Association (CCGA).

“From farm to table, sustainability is an evolving conversation within Canada’s food system and CCGA is pleased to support Kirk Zembal in his research that explores various aspects of this important topic,” Mike Ammeter, chair of the CCGA, said in the release.

Lester is the owner and producer of Rural Roots Canada, a Calgary, Alta.-based multi-media platform serving agricultural producers, businesses and organizations throughout the Prairies. Lester’s will look into the media’s role in agriculture and the influence it has on consumers’ perspective of the industry. He is being sponsored by the Alberta Wheat Commission (AWC).

Craig Lester

Craig Lester, owner and producer of Rural Roots Canada

“The Alberta Wheat Commission is excited to see the work Craig Lester, Rural Roots owner, will complete in the coming years on agriculture’s place in mainstream media and explore how the industry can take a proactive role on changing the consumer narrative,” Greg Sears, AWC chair, said in the release.

Ford is a senior agronomist with Quattro Ventures in Bow Island, Alta. Her Nuffield studies will focus on regenerative agriculture in potato production systems. The release noted her sponsor is McCain Foods Ltd.

“There is an urgent need to push forward the future of agriculture innovation in Canada. The Nuffield scholarship unlocks potential for future leaders who will help transform the landscape of agri-food and ensure the food system is sustainable for generations to come,” Charlie Angelakos, vice-president of global external affairs and sustainability for McCain Foods, said in the release.

In Ford’s daily work she works on crop production through real-time field monitoring and providing solutions for top crop performance on a 23,000-acre farm, the release said.

Emily Ford

Emily Ford, senior agronomist with Quattro Ventures

“This unique scholarship opportunity develops new influencers who will reshape our Canadian agricultural sector with innovation, global perspectives and leadership,” Blake Vince, Nuffield Canada chair and 2013 Scholar, says in the release. “Nuffield Canada is part of the global network of Nuffield alumni which supports fellow scholars and travel studies necessary to see agriculture from a global perspective.”

The release notes recipients can come from any capacity of primary production, industry, or governance of agriculture and must do a minimum of 10 weeks of travel study within 24 months to examine and research an agriculturally relevant issue. They then write a report on their research findings and make a presentation to the Nuffield board.

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