What inspires farmers and why is their job so important? Andrea De Roo explains:
Why did you want to be a farmer?
I was born and raised on the same family farm that I farm today with my dad and brother; you could say it’s in my blood! At a young age, I fell in love with the animals, plants, and science around growing safe and healthy food. This led me to university where I completed a Bachelor’s degree in Agronomy and a Masters in Plant Science. My desire to farm is now driven by my passion to help feed a growing world population, but to also better our farming practices for the next generation.
What crops do you grow?
My family and I grow a wide variety of crops, but predominantly wheat, canola, and soybeans. Other crops included from year to year are peas, faba beans, oats, barley, and flax.
What impact do pests and disease have on your crops?
Pests and disease often impact the crop through the reduction in yield or loss of crop quality. Wheat crops in our area saw a lot of pest and disease challenges in the 2016 growing season. High populations of wheat midge, a tiny insect that lays eggs in the wheat head so its larvae can feed on the developing kernel, lead to the potential to reduce yield. Shortly after midge, fusarium (a disease that also attacks the heads) caused significant reduction in grain quality through the production of toxins and also reduced yield by shrinking the infected kernels.
In general, how important is it to have access to crop protection products?
I believe it is very important to have access to crop protection products for cases where pest pressure incidences cannot be managed with sound agronomy and management practices. It’s important to have access to all the tools in the toolbox when farming, including crop protection products.
Why is your profession important in the challenge to feed the world?
We grow the primary products used to produce a variety of food products all over the world. The practices and decisions made on the farm level directly influence how much food could be potentially made every year!
— Andrea De Roo (@AgKnowledge06) February 25, 2017
What inspires you about your job?
Being able to farm with my family to provide safe and healthy food for everyone!
Andrea is a mixed grain and cattle farmer from Saskatchewan, Canada. She has a Bachelors degree in agronomy and Masters in plant science.