The Government of Canada is investing in grain research to increase yields for Canadian producers. Parliamentary Secretary Pierre Lemieux and Member of Parliament Bev Shipley (Lambton-Kent-Middlesex), on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, announced.
The Canadian Field Crops Research Alliance will receive up to $4 million to develop new grain and oilseed varieties that are tailored to meet the needs of the marketplace and increase profitability for farmers.
Vital to livestock and food
“The eastern Canadian grains and oilseeds industry is a vital part of our food industry, livestock sector and economy,” said Parliamentary Secretary Lemieux. “Today's investment will drive innovation, helping farmers harvest better crops and higher profits so they can continue to compete and succeed in the global marketplace.”
“A healthy agriculture industry depends on a strong, viable farm gate here at home, thanks to our growers' high-quality products,” said MP Shipley. “This type of research will ensure the grains and oilseed industry continues to play an important role in the Canadian and Ontario economy by creating exports and jobs.”
Research will focus on six field crops, including winter wheat, grain corn, soybeans, spring wheat, oats and barley, and work to develop new varieties with increased yields and more resistance to drought and disease. Variety development will also target new markets in the food, industrial and feed markets both here in Canada and around the world. Developing new varieties is vital to maintaining a strong grain and oil seed industry, as diseases and pests are constantly adapting. The knowledge and results from this project will allow researchers to shorten the cycle time for varietal development in the future.
“The research is vital to the future of our industry. It will ensure that farmers have access to varieties that will obtain higher yields with lower production costs and higher quality,” says Crosby Devitt, chair of Canadian Field Crop Research Alliance. “These projects will lead to new varieties of grains and oilseeds grown with the end user in mind.”
The grain industry is a key contributor to the eastern Canadian economy. The six field crops included in this project accounted for over three million hectares of grains and oilseeds in Eastern Canada, generating $2.9 billion in farm gate receipts in 2009.
Funding for this project comes from the Developing Innovative Agri-Products initiative, which is delivered by the Growing Forward framework under the Agri-Innovations program, a $158 million five-year program announced to support industry-led science and technology projects.