Dave MacTaggart is a household name in 4-H in the Lacombe area, and a lot more are going to know more about his achievements and visions come Friday, when the Top 30 Under 30 magazine launches in Edmonton.
MacTaggart was named to the 2018 list following a competitive nomination process, judged by leaders in the field of international development.
The 19 year old has spent 10 years with the Central Lacombe 4-H Beef Club as a member and leader; he's worked the past two summers at Ag Canada's Lacombe Research Centre and is currently into his 2nd year of studies at the University of Saskatchewan.
He's passionate about food production, engaged in agronomy research both in Lacombe and the U of S; he feels Alberta needs to be a leader in developing sustainable farming practices.
“You know Alberta has a role to feed the world through direct production, obviously we grow food here but I think we also as we go move on into the future we’re going to have an even bigger role of exporting our knowledge too and the know how to teach innovative and sustainable practices for successfully growing food in areas that are going to be most affected by big problems like climate change”.
At the age of 17 through 4-H public speaking, he finished first in the Canadian Young Speakers for Agriculture competition at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto, he presented on how Canadian agriculture is adapting to climate change.
MacTaggart explains some of the research work he’s currently involved in.
“It’s really an amazing opportunity to work with some world class researchers here at the University, and I’m a part of some projects looking at how to make crops like some of our major crops like wheat more hardy to the stresses that they face when they are grown in western Canada. So one of our big projects is looking at trying to find the genetic backing behind drought tolerance in wheat”.
In terms of what the future holds for MacTaggart who turns 20 next week, he sees himself technically involved with crop sciences, developing new crop varieties and continuing his work with youth, saying food production and working with youth are his two biggest passions in life.
The Top 30 Under 30 magazine is in its 7th year, produced by the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation.