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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 3, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta Tuesday, September 3, 1974 LETHBRIDGE HERALD Canadian scientists combat India drought Stabilization of crop yields in drought-stricken parts of India is the aim of Canada's participation in a five-year research project. says a local scientist who spent three years on the study. Tracy Anderson, agricultural engineer at the Lethbridge Research Station, said Canadians have been able to help establish a viable research program for dryland farming in India Mr Anderson, who first started work in India late in 1970. was a member of the Canadian team in charge of co-ordinating agricultural engineering research The work involves active research by Canadians to make the Indian people aware of the possibilities of carrying out crop-saving research, he said Mr. Anderson was directly responsible for research involving the use of major pieces of farm and laboratory equipment, much of it imported from Canada. Machines The equipment is being used on 23 co-operating farms in all parts of India. Eleven farms are fully equipped with Canadian machines Another Lethbridge businessman, Russ Lunney of General Farm Supplies, worked with Mr Anderson and shared responsibility of teaching Indian farmers and technicians to use the equipment Mr. Lunney returned in October, 1973. The active research centred on tillage work, seeding practices, soil moisture conservation. weed control and stubble Lots of rain Mr Anderson said because many parts of India get large amounts of rainfall in a short period of time, research was also done on collection, storage and reuse of water runoff for dryland farms Indicative of the problem, said Mr. Anderson, is the vastness of Indian agriculture. About 380 million acres of farmland is used for agricultural production But of this total, only 80 million acres are under irrigation projects and aren't hampered by drought Another 25 million acres receives adequate rainfall to grow abundant crops but 275 million acres are considered dryland problem areas. Stable yield The research by the Canadian crew, directed by Ed Andrews, director of the Lethbridge Research Station, is aimed at stabilizing the yields on the drought-stricken dryland farms, said Mr. Anderson. It is hoped farmers will be able to harvest some form of crop in all years, regardless of the moisture situation. Use and application of fertilizer is another research topic. Researchers are trying to define the benefits of a low rate of fertilizer application on dryland to get maximum use from a unit of fertilizer It was feared that all India's fertilizer stocks might be shifted to irrigated land because increased production has been proved But the research, aided by the Canadian team, shows that yields can be improved efficiently on dryland farms in India through the use of fertilizer if the time and rate of application are carefully controlled. Timing Mr. Anderson said seeding methods to establish better crop stands was part of the engineering work. Timing the seeding operation to optimum moisture levels was a key. Now the search is on for suitable seeding drills to allow the Indians to follow through on the seeding research. Mr. Anderson said the seeding equipment must be usable with both tractors WHEN A QUEENS DEN CANADIAN EXHIBIT from the houn BELMORE'S MUSEUM COUTTS, ALBERTA and the more common bullock. With at least one co- operating farm in all but one Indian province, travel was a big part of Mr Anderson's job. especially since he had to visit each farm at least two times each year. He travelled mainly by air with some trips via car and train. Because of the successes of the program, negotiations between Canadian and Indian authorities are being carried on to extend the research Specialists in all types of ENGINE REBUILDING CYLINDER BORING AND RESLEEVING CRANKSHAFT REGRINDING Ask about our Guarantee ENGINES WISCONSIN ENGINE Sales and Service Centre Custom Engine Parts Ltd. 1605 3rd Avenue South Phone 329-8181 Tire stone STORES Corner 3rd Ave. 8th St. S. Phone 327-8548 USE OUR ftrestone CREDIT PLAN OR. pssr PICK n PAIR of 500's fircstonc POLYESTER '500' 30 SIZE PlCK-A-PftlR OF WIDE SS 100 RETREADS! 232 00 TRUCK TIRE ENDURANCE for your camper or light truck FRONT END OPECIAI 1. Wheel Alignment 2. Static Pront Wheel Balance 3. Outer Front Wheel Bearing Repack ;