The Mackenzie Applied Research Association [MARA] is a not for profit producer-driven applied research association. MARA serves producers in Mackenzie County, the largest County in Alberta and the northernmost commercial agriculture region in Canada. MARA conducts applied agricultural and environmental research from its Fort Vermilion, Alberta location. MARA is proud to serve the largest number of organic producers (over 40%) in Alberta.
The central aims of MARA are to:
• Conduct relevant crop, livestock, and environmental research and demonstration trials.
• Develop nutrient strategies and innovative means to manage soils and lands to enhance production while protecting the environment.
• Deliver relevant extension services to producers with the ultimate aim of providing best crop and livestock management tips to producers, reducing production costs, improving crop and livestock marketing while enhancing greater environmental sustainability.
In delivering our programs, MARA recognizes the unique climate, soil and seasonality of northern Alberta and our role to provide producers with the best extension service based on sound, verified science applied to this region.
Following the purchase of the Fort Vermilion Experimental Farm by the Mackenzie County from the federal government, MARA now has the land base and resources to conduct short and long term conventional and organic research. MARA also owns the equipment to conduct field and plot scale research trials on short and long term basis.
MARA partners with individual producers, government and private organizations to deliver its programs, including Mackenzie County, local Agriculture Service Board, Alberta Agriculture, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, the commodity commissions, local agri-businesses, Organic Alberta, ARECA, seed and chemical companies.