It was pure, yet sweet coincidence that the new Richardson International farm was in Richardson, southeast of Regina.
That is the site of the Bennett farm, a new $15 million 444-acre research and demonstration farm.
Similar to its operation in Kelburn, Man., Richardson will put the latest seed varieties, crop input products and equipment to the test in real growing conditions.
It allows Richardson and its customers to gather more accurate information on how crops and products perform in different growing environments.
President and CEO Curt Vossen, says it is important to undertake this work.
“It is a long way from a research bench to a farmer’s field and we can be part of the connection in between at a facility like this,” Vossen explained. “We want these products to be pragmatic, practical, usable for the farm customer.”
Initial site work began last fall and is almost complete with the addition of a machine shop, shed, storage bins and initial landscaping. The first crop was planted this spring and Bennett Farm will host tours throughout the growing season.
Phase two will begin in 2017 with the construction of a new regional office for Richardson Pioneer.
In 2018, phase three will add a large training and events centre, which will provide space for meetings and events for Richardson and its suppliers and partners.
The Bennett farm, like the one in Manitoba, will also host school students so they can learn more about how food gets to their plates.
Vossen believes Richardson has a role to play in bridging the gap between those living and working a rural life and those in urban centres.
“Demystify or debunk some of the conceptions about modern agriculture that exist today and are based more on opinion and thought process rather than on fact and science.”