This week, Upper Canada Growers announced the opening of a new tissue culture laboratory in Harrow, Ontario, that aims to provide Canadian growers with clean fruit trees and rootstocks — faster than the current certification process for new varieties.

The new lab is a partnership with the University of Guelph and the National Research Council of Canada’s Industrial Research Assistance Program.

According to a company news release, this process of micropropagation will allow Upper Canada Growers to react to rising demand for affordable apple trees and Canadian tissue cultured plants will open export markets and position Canada as a leader in the production of clean plant material for the world’s orchards.”

Robert Haynes, the longtime manager of Mori Essex Nursery in Harrow, founded Upper Canada Growers in 2016 with his children. The company, based in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, provides pome and stone fruit to both commercial and home growers and has embraced tissue culture production to increase the region’s tree supply.

—by Kate Prengaman