Processing Carrot Research Program

Our mission

To establish, coordinate, liaise, research, develop, demonstrate, and constantly upgrade processing carrot production techniques and technologies, toward enhancing yield and quality, increasing and sustaining productivity and profitability to the producers and processors. We also aim to use environmentally friendly, resource-thrifty technologies, and to be the world leader in processing carrot research and development.

The "C" team

  • Rajasekaran Lada, program director
  • Azure Adams, scientific officer
  • Phillip Joy, research associate
  • Arumugam Thiagarajan, research associate
  • Paul McNeil, research assistant
  • James Burke, research assistant
  • Alan Harrison Wright, graduate research assistant
  • Samantha Feltmate, graduate research assistant
  • Usha P. Rayirath, graduate research assistant
  • Mason McDonald, graduate research assistant
  • Kathy R. Pickle, graduate research assistant
  • Andrea L. Munroe, summer research assistant


Faculty of Agriculture

Drs. C. Caldwell, A. Madani, R. Gordon, P. Havard, T. Astakie, D. Percival; Profs. C. Miller , G. Sampson

NSDAF (1998–2001)

D. Sangster, P. Swinkels, R. Whitman, L. Crozier


F. MacRae, P. Burgess, V. Zvalo


P. Hicklenton (AAFC, Kentville); K. Sanderson (AAFC, Charlettetown); Dr. G. Bourgeois (Horticultural Research and Development Centre, Saint-Jean, Quebec); J. Owen (AAFC, Bouctouche)

PEI Department of Agriculture

Dr. T. Sturtz

Seed companies

Bejo, Seminis, Harris Moran, Stokes, Vesey’s

Fertilizer companies

Truro Agro Mart, NS; Phosyn, UK

Growers and grower organizations

Bragg Lumber Company, T. Meredith, T. Bowers, D. Congdon, T. Meredith Sr.; PEI Horticultural Association; Hort Nova

Universities (Canada)

  • Dr. T.J. Blake, University of Toronto
  • Dr. D. Hooper, Dalhousie University
  • Dr. F. Shahidi, Memorial University
  • Dr. Robert Drobovitch, Dalhousie University

Universities/organizations (international)

  • Dr. P. Simon, University of Wisconsin, Madison
  • Dr. I. Goldman, University of Wisconsin, Madison and University of Iowa, USDA-ARS
  • Dr. Usha Palaniswamy, University of Connecticut, USA
  • Asian Vegetable Research and Development Centre, Taiwan
  • Dr. B.P. Naidu, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Advisory Board

  • Angus Ells (Bragg Lumber Company) - chair
  • Rajasekaran Lada (program director, PCRP)
  • Cameron Fullerton (Oxford Frozen Foods)
  • Tom Meredith Jr. (producer - NS)
  • Greg Whitney (producer - NS)
  • Allen Balderston (producer - PEI)
  • Findlay MacRae (operations director, AgraPoint)
  • Micheal Johnson (NSDAF - Programs and Risk Management)
  • Derek Anderson (head, Department of Plant and Animal Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture)
  • Azure Stiles (scientific officer, PCRP) - recording secretary


The Carrot Processing Research Program makes available various publications that provide more information on its research  findings. See the complete list of publications.


The Carrot Processing Research Program also has a variety of fact sheets on its research projects. See the complete list of factsheets.


A variety of newsletters, dating from 2000 to 2005, are available to download as PDFs. See the complete list of newsletters.


  • commercial carrot seeders
  • small-scale push seeder
  • harvester
  • bicycle sprayer
  • TDR soil moisture meter
  • chlorophyll meter
  • manual grader

Research themes

  • Varietal introduction and evaluation
  • Resource optimization and modeling
  • Crop competition and yield and quality monitoring
  • Stand establishment and seed physiology
  • Physiology disorders
  • Stress physiology and acclimation
  • Bulking physiology
  • Eco-physiology
  • Pest and disease forecasting – CIPRA calibration
  • Ecologically, environmentally, economically sustainable (EEES) Carrot-based cropping systems
  • Good agricultural practices (GAP)
  • Maturity, yield, and quality modeling


Current research projects


Bulking physiology (an NSERC project)

Project Title

Bulking Physiology: Carrot Bulking, Quality and Harvest Synchronization through Uncovering Genotype, Agronomic and Agroclimatological Interactions

Goals and Objectives

The goal of this project was to develop crop production systematics (CPS) and harvest decision models (HDM) for the processing carrot industry.

The objectives are to: 1) understand carrot bulking physiology and dynamics, yield and quality as influenced by genetic, agronomic, and agro-climatological factors; 2) investigate the influence of these factors on the interrelationship between root bulking, canopy growth, canopy photosynthesis and sink activity; 3) to develop integrated CPS and HDMs.


Project director: Dr. Rajasekaran Lada
Project collaborator: Dr. C. Forney, AAFC
Scientific office: Azure Adams


1. Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Coucil (NSERC)
2. Oxford Frozen Foods, Nova Scotia


Project title

Agro-informatics: Developing "in silico" solutions for knowledge discovery, knowledge management and providing decision-making tools and systems for carrot industry.


The goal of this project was to develop agro-informatics through the development of new, innovative digital information and decision systems, technologies and solutions for the carrot industry, researchers, and decision makers, by integrating agronomy, crop physiology, computer science, software engineering and information technology. The project will build on Oxford's fresh product database and use agronomic and meteorological data sets to develop a comprehensive database that can be used as a management and decision making tool for field planning, auditing, budgeting, on-farm food safety, and production, process and market planning providing virtual solutions to on-farm food safety and environmental stewardship


Project leader: Dr. Rajasekaran Lada
Agro-informatics specialist: to be hired
Research biologist: to be hired


1. Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food Program
2. Oxford Frozen Food Limited


Project title

Eco-physiology, Dynamics and Bulking Modeling of Cut and Peel Carrots

Goals and objectives

The long-term goal of this project is to develop harvest decision models (HDMs) for carrots.

The short-term objectives are to
i) understand the root bulking dynamics as influenced by seeding rates, seeding dates and harvesting dates;
ii) identify the link between root bulking and weather parameters;
iii) elucidate the eco-physiological changes;
iv) model root bulking.


Project director: Dr. Rajasekaran Lada
Project collaborator: Mr. A. Ells, Bragg Lumber Company


1. Technology Development 2000 Program, Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture
2. Oxford Frozen Foods, Nova Scotia


Contact us

Physical address

Processing Carrot Research Program
Department of Plant and Animal Sciences
Faculty of Agriculture, Dalhousie University
Room 151 Cox Institute
50 Pictou Road, Truro, NS
B2N 5E3

Mailing address

Processing Carrot Research Program
Department of Plant and Animal Sciences
Faculty of Agriculture, Dalhousie University
PO Box 550
Truro, NS
B2N 5E3


Dr. R. Lada -

Tel.: (902) 893-2309
Fax: (902) 897-9762