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Olds College taking its Smart Farm to Saskatchewan

Olds College partnering with Saskatchewan Polytechnic in venture
Autonomous farm equipment on the Olds College’s Smart Farm (Photo contributed)

Olds College is expanding its Smart Farm operations into Saskatchewan.

“Olds College is strategically focused on supporting the sustainable growth and development of Canada’s agri-food sector, and our Smart Farm ecosystem is a fundamental asset for industry, researchers, faculty and students to develop and integrate technology and best practice,” said Olds College president Stuart Cullum in a statement.

The Smart Farm will be set up on 800 acres of donated land near Craik, Sask.

The expansion of the Olds College Smart Farm into Saskatchewan will provide a platform for the college to partner with post-secondary institutions, industry, and local producers by providing ag-tech training and research opportunities that align and support the needs of Saskatchewan learners, producers and agriculture industry.

Saskatchewan Polytechnic president and CEO Larry Rosia, sees the collaboration with Olds College as a key opportunity to enhance the learning and applied research environment for students and industry partners.

“Sask Polytech’s Digital Integration Centre of Excellence (DICE) provides the expertise and facilities required to move smart farm technology forward,” said Rosia. “Our applied research experience and industry connections in the tech and agriculture sectors will benefit all involved in this innovative new project, including students and industry partners.”

The Olds College Saskatchewan Smart Farm will focus on using technology and practices to improve the overall productivity, profitability, and sustainability of food production.

By incorporating the land in Saskatchewan as a part of the Olds College Smart Farm, Olds College and its partners will be able to leverage 3,600 acres, including a 140 head cow/calf herd, feedlot and sheep flock, all of which is managed as closely as possible to a commercial farm operation, while also being a living lab space to provide infrastructure for innovation, development, validation, demonstration, and scaling of ag technologies and practices.