Green solutions for a blooming business

Green solutions for a blooming business

Research on soil fungi at Université de Montréal helps Canada’s top horticultural company prosper in Rivière-du-Loup, Que.
May 11, 2012

Premier Tech, based in Rivière-du-Loup, Que., is Canada’s leading supplier of horticultural products, including biofertilizers that enhance plant growth without harming the environment. As the largest private employer in Rivière-du-Loup, Premier Tech has a total international workforce of about 2,300, including more than 800 in this city of 19,000 residents.

To improve its range of gardening products and expand its market to the agricultural sector, Premier Tech has called on the expertise of Mohamed Hijri, a plant biologist at Université de Montréal who specializes in the genetics and genomics of mycorrhizal fungi, soil micro-organisms that help plants absorb nutrients and develop disease resistance. Premier Tech’s eco-friendly product line containing the fungi improves crop yield and reduces the need for phosphate-based fertilizers.

The collaboration will lead to the development of a diagnostic tool to help farmers and growers analyze their soil and the efficacy of mycorrhizal products, as well as make informed decisions on crop fertilization. Ongoing research on new strains of the fungi promises to diversify the company’s mycorrhizal products line, helping Premier Tech remain competitive and keep jobs in the region.