Innovation and development
The Innovation and Development Service at La Coop fédérée has as its principle mandate to identify, anticipate, and develop, and this right through to commercialization, new and promising economic activities for La Coop’s network, principally in the areas of bio-products and renewable energy.
Some achievements and initiatives to date:
- In 2012, La Coop partnered with a Manitoba company now known as “Biovalco & Biovalco Innovative Products”, a leader in the development, handling, treatment and densification of agricultural biomass in Canada.
- The development and marketing of a combustion and heat producing system using multi-combustible materials (agricultural and forestry biomass) under the brand Blue Flame Stoker™. This system, including various business solutions, is now distributed by Sonic Energy inc.
- In collaboration with 13 other Quebec organizations from different activity sectors, La Coop fédérée contributed to the development of the “2025 Biomass Vision: A collective vision for a greener and more prosperous Quebec”, an initiative that aims to develop the residual biomass (forestry and agricultural) heating industry in Quebec.
- Investing in a packaging and densification factory for agricultural biomass in Manitoba, with the main objective of developing super-absorbent bedding for livestock, marketed under the Super Straw TM brand.
- Participating at research and demonstration sites evaluating different kinds of dedicated crops for the bio-products market, especially switch grass, Reed Canary grass, fast-growing willows, sorghum, sugar beets, etc., as well as in two rural laboratories in Quebec linked to agricultural and forestry biomass. These trials allow us to identify the dedicated crops best suited for different regions in Quebec and various market segments.
- In collaboration with the Ontario Federation of Agriculture and Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, La Coop fédérée will complete, as of autumn 2014, its demonstration of corn stalk harvesting in southern Ontario for the bio-products market. These demonstrations will help raise awareness among farmers of new opportunities and to collect data on harvesting in real conditions with the latest equipment developed by AGCO and Stinger.
- Participation in a project near Winnipeg targeting the harvesting and development of cattails as bio-filters as a reduction strategy for phosphorus run-off into Lake Winnipeg. The objective at this stage is to evaluate the feasibility of developing a biological filter ecosystem that would incorporate the use of cattails in conjunction with other agricultural residues available in the region.