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Virtual Tours

From the comfort of your own home!

City of Medicine Hat
Medicine Hat, Alberta

Convertus Group
Surrey, British Columbia

Eco360
Moncton, New Brunswick

Hamlet of Tulita
Northwest Territories

Highfield Regenerative Farm
Calgary, Alberta

Toilet Tech
including the EcoWashroom in Utopia

Utopia Farmland
Utopia, Ontario

Walker Environmental
Thorold and Arthur, Ontario

Speakers

Tuesday November 1, 2022

Government of Canada Initiatives to Advance Organics Recycling and Soil Health

Certified Compostable Packaging Developments and Marketplace Conditions

Chris McKillop, Club Coffee

Chris McKillop joined Club Coffee LP as Vice President, Communications and Government Relations in 2014. In that role, Chris oversees the company’s public relations and government relations strategies and actions. His work centres on government and stakeholder engagement as well as media outreach for Club Coffee’s sustainable packaging innovations such as its certified compostable PurPod100® single serve coffee pod and AromaPak™ packaging.

He brings to this role 30+ years of experience in government and his own successful communications consulting practice. That work included onsite communications at the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development and the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development. It also includes management consulting experience with governments and the UN’s International Labour Organization.

Rhodes Yepsen, Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI)

Rhodes Yepsen is Executive Director of the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI), a non-profit advocating for the value of certified compostable packaging in diverting organic waste to composting. Yepsen’s expertise is on systems-based solutions, specifically the synergy in solving for food waste and packaging at the same time – to address climate change, ecosystem impacts, and regenerative agriculture. He has served on the Board of USCC, on the Advisory Council for the US Plastics Pact, and was an editor and writer at BioCycle magazine.

Wednesday November 2, 2022

Advances to Accelerate Organics Recycling and Soil Health Sustainability

Cedric MacLeod, MacLeod Agronomics

Cedric MacLeod has over nine years of entrepreneurial experience, having served as president of MacLeod Agronomics, an agri-environmental consulting firm specializing in the analysis and integration of sustainable agricultural practices for the Canadian ag-sector. As well, he and his wife own and operate Local Valley Beef, a grass-fed beef ranch in western New Brunswick. As such, he has considerable knowledge and experience in extended grazing seasons, rotational grazing and integrated forage production systems.

Cedric also has considerable experience working with national and provincial not-for-profit boards and has served on both sides — as a board member on some organizations and as Executive Director for both the Canadian and New Brunswick Young Farmers’ Forums.

Lisa DeVetter, Washington State University

Lisa Wasko DeVetter is an Associate Professor of Small Fruit Horticulture at Washington State University. Her diverse research and extension program focuses on exploring alternative practices designed to promote plant productivity, fruit quality, and on-farm efficiencies, while ensuring the health of adjacent natural resources within the Pacific Northwest. Primary research areas include soil-biodegradable plastic mulches and improved end-of-life management of agricultural plastics used in small fruit crop production, optimizing pollination services in small fruit crops, and nutrient management.

PART I
PART II

Shuresh Ghimire, Washington State University

Shuresh obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degree in agricultural science from Tribhuvan University in Nepal. He completed his Ph.D. in Horticulture (2015-2018) from Washington State University where he studied biodegradable plastic mulches for vegetable production. Prior to working in Washington, Shuresh was a Horticultural Development Officer for the Department of Agriculture in Nepal (2010-2015), where worked extensively with farmers conducting training and plant clinics and created extension publications. Shuresh also served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Horticulture at the Himalayan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology in Nepal. 

In addition to working as a vegetable specialist at UConn (since 2018), when hemp became a regulated agricultural crop in CT, he started working with hemp growers to create and disseminate information regarding hemp production practices and IPM.

Research Discoveries to Support Organics Recycling I

Tom Forge, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada

Tom is an applied research soil ecologist at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Summerland Research and Development Centre in the Okanagan Valley of BC. His research program addresses the cultural and biological management of soil-borne pests and diseases of horticultural crops, with a particular emphasis on the utilization of composts for suppressing replant disease complexes of perennial fruit crops and enhancing overall soil health.

Tom grew up in small town Kansas where he began working in agriculture from an early age. Hie obtained his B.Sc. in Biology from Kansas State University, and Ph.D. from the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Wisconsin. He then conducted post-doctoral research in Scotland, Victoria, BC, and then at Oregon State University. In 2001 Tom assumed his position with AAFC at the Agassiz Research and Development Centre in the Fraser Valley of BC, and then in 2013 he moved to the Summerland Research and Development Centre. In his spare time, Tom helps his partner Andrea produce organic vegetables for the local market, and is enthusiastic about any outdoor sports but especially mountain biking, cross-country skiing and hiking.

Louis-Pierre Comeau, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada

Dr. Louis-Pierre Comeau is a research scientist with the Federal Government of Canada. His research focuses on landscape and soil carbon. Specifically, he is investigating ways to replenish soil organic matter from agricultural and forest lands.

Dr. Louis-Pierre Comeau started his Research Scientist appointment with AAFC after his postdoctoral fellowship at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Dr. Comeau previously completed a B.Sc. in Biology at the National Autonomous University of Mexico; a M.Sc. in Soil Science at the University of Saskatchewan; and a PhD. in soil Science at the University of Aberdeen UK (with the field work done in Indonesian forests).

Dr. Comeau currently leads national projects that investigate the relationship between soil biodiversity and carbon storage. Dr. Comeau also participates in projects on compost mineralization dynamic. His long term scientific goal is to contribute to knowledge about why some carbon molecules can remain stable in the soil for thousands of years.

Lord Abbey, Dalhousie University

Dr. Lord Abbey has a background in Horticulture and Crop Science with a research focus on sustainable horticultural production systems for human health and well-being. Having completed his BSc (Hons) Agriculture from the University of Ghana, Dr. Abbey continued his studies in the UK, The Netherlands and Canada. He is currently an Associate Professor (tenured) at Dalhousie University Faculty of Agriculture where he teaches and supervises undergraduate and graduate students. His research program is Plant Nutrition and Physiology. He holds several federal and provincial governments awards and other grants and supervised about 40 highly qualified personnel. Some of his current research activities include exploration of natural amendments and pyrolytic products, tropical ethnic crops production in NS; haskap fertility; apple and pear health; aromatic and medicinal plants; integrated nutrient management systems under field and greenhouse production systems; and value-addition and alternative uses of compost and vermicompost. He has over 80 publications and in press articles to his credit. He is the Secretary for the Executive Board of the Canadian Society for Horticultural Science (CSHS), a former Board member of the Nova Scotia Institute of Agrologists (NSIA) Council, and member of the International Society for Horticultural Science (ISHS).

Shanwei Xu, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada

Dr. Shanwei Xu is a Research Scientist in Ecological Water Management at the Morden Research and Development Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Previously he worked as a Water and Soil Research Chemist at the Alberta Agriculture and Forestry in Lethbridge, Alberta. Dr. Xu received his Ph.D. in Bioresource Engineering from the Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science at the University of Alberta. His recent and past research mainly involved establishing best management practices to reduce nutrients and contaminants in agricultural water, using composting for disposal of feedlot manure, specified risk materials, and animal mortalities with soil application, and characterizing the complexity and diversity of microbial communities in ensiled silage. Specified aspects of his work have included monitoring water quantity and quality, analyzing soil, manure and compost nutritive values, measuring greenhouse gas emissions, profiling the microbial communities present, and determining the inactivation of pathogens. Currently he has authored and co-authored 25 scientific papers and 1 book chapter.

Thursday November 3, 2022

Research Discoveries to Support Organics Recycling II

Grant Clark, McGill University

Dr. Grant Clark grew up on a mixed farm in Central Alberta, Canada. He leads the Ecological Engineering Research Group at Mcgill University, studying material and energy flows through natural ecosystems to inspire the design of improved technology, and enhancing services that are beneficial to society. He has a background in agricultural engineering, compost engineering, solid waste management systems for agricultural and municipal applications, and greenhouse gas quantification. Grant teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in organic waste management, ecological engineering, and systems modelling. Grant’s group recently led a multi-institutional project funded by Agricultural and Agri-Food Canada to study greenhouse gases emissions from land-applied municipal biosolids at different research sites across the country.

Brandon Gilroyed, University of Guelph

Dr. Brandon Gilroyed is an Associate Professor from the School of Environmental Sciences and serves as the Director for the Centre for Agricultural Renewable Energy and Sustainability at the University of Guelph Ridgetown Campus. Having received a BSc in Molecular Genetics and a BSc in Plant Biology from the University of Alberta, Dr. Gilroyed went on to complete a PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Calgary, and a Postdoc with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Dr. Gilroyed’s interdisciplinary research focuses on the connections between renewable energy production, agricultural biproducts and wastes, and the environment.

Christine Brown, OMAFRA

Chris has been involved with agricultural use of manure and other organic amendments for the past 20 years looking at the nutrient and organic matter benefits to crops.  She has been involved with numerous on-farm studies looking at economics and environmental impact of manure and compost on various crops including corn, soybeans and forages.  She is the editor of Publication 811, Agronomy Guide for Field Crops and has been part of the team involved in the development of NMAN; the nutrient management software used to determine manure application and commercial fertilizer rates for Ontario crops.  She lives on a farm, just outside of London.

Friday November 4, 2022

Composting & Anaerobic Digestion Facilities & Processing Initiatives

Tom Ferencevic, FITEC

Tom has over 25 years of experience in agriculture, serving as an agronomist for a variety of different commodities. When he learned about the science of biogas 17 years ago, he resolved to bring anaerobic digestion to Canada. He immersed himself in all aspects of the field, from sampling and performing waste audits, to participating in the construction and installation of new facilities and the operation of existing systems. Paired with an enthusiasm for problem-solving, this experience has led him to become a leading expert in biogas in North America. Through Fitec, Tom offers systems that are robust, reliable and energy efficient. He prides himself on building and designing systems that are customized to his clients’ needs and resources, helping them to fine-tune their operations and optimize their output. He has supervised the building of 4 food waste powered facilities in Canada, 1 in Mexico and improved the operation of 3 other existing facilities in Canada. He currently supports the operation of 7 facilities.

Brian Fuchs, W.L. Gore

Brian is the North American Business Director at W. L. Gore & Associates for GORE® Cover technology and has been serving the environmental field for 30 years. Brian’s experience includes project management, contracting, regulatory affairs and field testing, including pilot studies and full scale facility operations. Before joining Gore, Brian spent his time as a chemical application specialist in the drinking water and wastewater treatment industry. Brian did his undergraduate study at the New York Institute of Technology and received an MBA from the University of Delaware.

Paul Larouche, BROME Compost

BROME Compost Inc. has been involved in composter development and has acted as a consultant since 2005, when the company decided to take over composter sales and testing for a variety of customers.  At the end of 2014, BROME Compost inc. became a manufacturer of industrial composters.

BROME Compost Inc. focuses its energy on developing industrial composting for businesses of all sizes. We also promote composting as an eco-responsible solution to waste management. Our activities range from the conception of BROME Composting Systems to their manufacturing, their on-site installation and operator training and support.

In my opinion, and the same goes for the whole BROME Compost team, building an efficient and user-friendly system is only a part of the mission. The true challenge resides in optimizing the composter and the composting process so that each composting system is perfectly adapted to our customer’s specific needs and goals. In order to take full advantage of the virtues of composting, every system should be tailored to the client. By having their needs analysed by our experts from the outset of a project, BROME Compost inc.’s clients can make significant strides towards redesigning their business’ waste management plan.

In my advisory role and with extensive expertise in management, I am fully committed to providing you with a service of unrivaled quality that is both friendly and competent. Our outstanding team will deliver customized service to help assess your needs, install your made-to-measure industrial composting system and help resolve any on-site issues. I make sure that all our clients get the best solution for their composting needs by making a point of being personally involved in the development of every project.

I founded Brome Compost Inc. from a desire to make composting both simple and accessible, and I accomplish this by actively working towards making composting accessible to thousands of people across North America.

Jocelyn Molyneux, WasteNot Farms

She holds a Master’s degree in Applied Environmental Science and Management. Jocelyn has more than a decade of experience in waste management, sustainability, and regenerative growing and is truly passionate about finding and implementing solutions to the planet’s most pressing environmental issues.

Dale Overton, Overton Environmental

Dale’s interest and experience is with applied ecology and sustainable landscape management. Overton Environmental develops, manufactures and markets various biological soil amendments and organic fertility products (Eco-Tea and Essential Organics). They are currently involved in many innovative research projects both in Canada and Internationally, which focus on organics waste management, sustainable agri-systems, soil ecology and revegetation.

Baraka Poulin, ECS (Engineered Compost Systems)

Baraka has a Master of Business Administration Georgia College and State University BS Mechanical Engineering Gonzaga University. He provides sales engineering and early stage technical support for project development. Prior to joining ECS in 2019, Baraka developed industrial scale biomass renewable energy projects with both pyrolysis and gasification technology. He also brings an extensive background developing energy efficiency projects with public sector clients through energy service performance contracting.

Updates from the Members of the International Compost Alliance
and the International Network on Fertilizer Analysis

Vinisa Saynes-Santillan, FAO – Food and Agriculture Organization of The United Nations Vinisa Saynes Santillán is a biologist specialized in carbon and nitrogen cycling in the plant-soil-atmosphere system of agricultural lands and forestry systems. She joined the FAO Global Soil Partnership to support the sustainable soil management activities associated with CO2 and non-CO2 greenhouse gas emissions and their mitigation in agriculture. She is also supporting the implementation of The International Code of Conduct for the Sustainable Use and Management of Fertilizers and she is the coordinator of the International Network on Fertilizer Analysis

Members of the International Compost Alliance:

Percy Foster, Cré: Composting & Anaerobic Digestion Association of Ireland

Percy Foster has been working the last twenty years in the organic waste sector in Ireland, Europe and the United Arab Emirates. As CEO for Cré: Composting and Anaerobic Digestion Association of Ireland from 2006 to the present, Percy has coordinated and managed the activities of the association, representing the composting and anaerobic digestion industry at Government and European levels.

Jane Gilbert, International Solid Waste Association

Dr Jane Gilbert is a chartered environmentalist and waste management professional and has been involved in the organics recycling sector for over twenty-five years. She is the former chief executive of the UK Composting Association, co-founder of the European Compost Network and vice chair of the International Solid Waste Association’s Biological Treatment Working Group. Jane trades as Carbon Clarity, providing consultancy, training and writing services. Jane has authored a number of technical publications and is an associate editor of the upcoming Composting Handbook, due to be published by Elsevier in 2021. She is also the principal author of two ISWA reports summarising the benefits of applying digestate and compost to soil.

Jenny Grant, REA – The Association for Renewable Energy & Clean Technology

Jenny has been involved with the organics recycling industry for over 17 years. She is Head of Organics and Natural Capital for the REA – a UK not-for-profit trade association representing organics recycling operators (amongst others). Jenny carries out a range of activities to promote the sustainable management of biodegradable resources on behalf of members. She also provides technical advice to compost producers and AD operators, delivers training and specializes in assisting operators with achieving the UK standards for producing composts and digestates.

John McKew, Australian Organics Recycling Association (AORA)

John, currently residing in Launceston Australia, and is the National Executive Officer for the Australian Organics Recycling Association.  Previously John was in the role of CEO of the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association where his achievements include the development of a new strategic plan, significant work around improving employee satisfaction and company culture and improvement in financial performance.   Prior to this, he also held CEO roles with the Australian Fodder Industry Association and Herefords Australia Ltd.    

Stefanie Siebert, European Compost Network

Executive Director of the European Compost Network ECN e.V.

Since 2012, Stefanie serves as Executive Director of the European Compost Network ECN e.V. She is responsible for the day-to-day work as well as for developing and implementing the ECN strategy and policies. She coordinates the ECN’s representation and lobbying activities in Europe. As ECN’s Quality Manager she is responsible for managing the European Quality Assurance Scheme for compost and digestate (ECN-QAS). Stefanie is a soil scientist and has a PhD degree in natural science. Since 2000, she has been working in the biological waste management sector. She was technical officer of the German Humus and Substrate Industry (VHE), Quality Manager and European policy advisor of the German Quality Assurance Organization (BGK).

The Compost Council of Canada is the national non-profit, member-driven organization dedicated to advocating and advancing organics residuals recycling and compost use.
The Council serves as the central resource and network for the compost and organics recycling industry in Canada and, through its members,
contributes to the environmental sustainability of the communities in which they operate.